There’s a shocking amount of businesses out there with a terrible website. You probably don’t believe me, as we’re at the pinnacle of the digital age and most of us live with half our head online already, but some websites are still as useless as they were back in 2000. After a short but frustrating visit to an entirely pink website with comic sans font, you’ll feel the smooth relief of clicking into a mobile-friendly and seamless website. Why can’t they all just be like this?
Use the website
Pay a visit to a brilliant site and think about what makes it so good. The way it looks is usually the first thing to come to mind – your eyes follow a natural pattern, it’s not at all cluttered, but rather neat and clean. The content flows beautifully, like an infinity pool, and the information you need is placed strategically on the page. It’s thought-through, a piece of design art, and laid out to be of as much use as possible to the reader.
Now, pay a visit to your website and see in which category it ends up. If it’s old, a bit messy, or even if the colors are a bit off, you should think about a redesign. People would want to spend a lot more time on your site, they will be proud to recommend it to their friends, and it will communicate that your business is on-point and helpful. Usability Geek has a good article on using white space.
Develop a brand strategy
As the website will represent your business, the one designing it needs to know what you stand for. The people who are already loyal to your business, your employees, everyone with a relation to the brand you’ve built will be deeply disappointed if the site communicates something differently – it may even hurt your business. Use a digital print company like 1st CS Signs and Print to market your business offline as well, making the brand of your business more reliable than it would have been by only being online.
Deliver great content
An excellent business website needs a good blog. Make plans for it, dream about the increased traffic that will bring in more money, and feed it regularly. Your competitors are just living off the same standard blog posts; they’re not even that good, and SEO has probably not even been given a thought. It’s even worse if SEO is all they’ve thought about, and the posts don’t contain one original idea.
I’m all for a good old-fashioned home-cooked blog post. By that, I mean that if you’re able with words and enjoy writing, you should try to do as much as possible yourself. If you don’t have the time or the skills to keep your blog updated, think about outsourcing it. Alright, it won’t be a home-cooked blog post, but it will be well-written, original, and useful to your readers.
Your competitor might have an alright site, but that’s because the daughter-in-law of the founder did it in her spare time – and she’s not going to keep updating it. Since not everyone got the memo from ten years back about updating their website and staying on point with the trends, your business has a significant advantage.