For businesses today, there’s nothing quite as important as a successful website. It’s your calling card, your direct line of communication with customers, your portfolio, and so much more. Without a site that connects with and retains visitors, you’re losing out on a huge part of your customer base. And, for many businesses in this post-pandemic, safely social-distanced era, having an online presence is what keeps business afloat.
Just about anyone can create a website. There are thousands of templates and free support services online that make website design and development more accessible than ever.
But, if you really want to attract customers, having a polished look on the front end, and important SEO optimization and marketing drivers on the backend, is what will give your business the support it needs and deserves.
So, how do you know if your website is up to the task? And, what are the essentials of the most successful sites? As we work with clients, we focus on seven key website solutions principles:
The best sites meet their audiences where they are at—that means having multiple ways for your site visitors to engage with you, as well as several points of contact. Be sure your phone, email, and social media are visible throughout your site. Having a prominent and easy-to-use contact form is key, as well. And a Google map for your storefront location prominently displayed on your contact page, is essential.
Additionally, make sure your images have metadata and your site is optimized for sight impaired audiences. By making your website more accessible, you’ll be reaching not only a wider customer base—you’ll also be elevating your SEO and improving your site’s organic search ratings.
- Quick, reliable, and secure
Your customers not only need to be able to find your site—they need to be able to use it, quickly and easily. If your site stalls, loads slowly, images won't render, or your overall UX doesn’t function correctly, your users are going to leave—and not come back.
Going a step further: Your site needs to be reliable and trustworthy. Having a secure https for any business is a given. But prompt and easy customer service is key, too. A chat option can be a great way for you to build trust with your clients and offer a fast and reliable way for them to reach you with questions or to make purchases.
- Optimization for multiple devices
In addition to ensuring your site looks good on a laptop or desktop machine, making sure your site is optimized for mobile and other devices is crucial to compete in today’s digital landscape.
An added bonus: Making your new website design mobile-friendly is a big win, when it comes to SEO. Google’s search algorithm prefers and prioritizes mobile-friendly websites. Which means that if your site isn’t mobile ready, you’ve already lost business to mobile savvy customers. (And, in today’s market, that’s nearly all consumers.)
- Integrated user experiences
Your site should offer users an experience that feels seamless and intuitive. Any successful site is integrated for cross-platform and cross-device usage. Your customers don’t want to feel like they’re having to sift around to find the information they need. Struggling with a clunky UX can feel a bit like reaching through an iPad or browser window to try and pull through information.
Instead, your site users should be able to interact with your site easily and fluidly, connecting readily with you across platforms (both browsers and social media platforms).
- Engaging and interactive page design
Keep your customers coming back to your website again and again with engaging and interactive features. An inviting landing page is like your home’s front door: You want it to feel comfortable, accessible, and welcoming to visitors. Additionally, your site’s navigation should be like an open window—with direct line-of-sight into the key areas on your site.
Engaging layout and design can go a long way in enticing customers, as well. Large images, helpful content, and the ability to seamlessly interact with your site’s pages and tools will reflect well on you and your business.
- Great content
As the old adage goes, “content is king.” Fresh, new, and personalized content experiences are what make good websites shine. Your readers want to be able to connect with you—and your content is what can make that happen.
Adding a blog or baking in social media updates to your website’s experience can be easy and effective ways to keep your website feeling and looking fresh and interesting. Users tend to return and visit again, if they see you’re adding new content frequently. And, those increased visits can boost your SEO, too—creating a positive snowball effect for your site.
Knowing your customers and understanding their needs can be a gamechanger for your online business. Competitive analysis, site metrics, listening to your customers, and more all contribute to your business’ success. Being able to identify customer personalities and understanding their needs will help your business solve customers’ problems and elevate your service offerings as trustworthy solutions.
Offering a personalized web experience can help drive customer connection and retention. We all know that the key to a successful business is building great relationships with your clients. Looking for ways to personalize your web visitors’ experiences—instead of providing a single, broad experience—will set your business apart and position you to provide customers with a unique experience tailored specifically to their business needs.
Providing the best experience for you and your online customers
When it comes to creating a stellar web experience, hiring a professional web designer can help you drive fast results. Partnering with a good web design agency will help you gain access to the tools and resources you may need to take your site to the next level. By auditing your existing site, marketing teams—like those here at The Branding Agency—can help you analyze your existing site and identify areas of improvement.
Give us a call at (704) 800-7413 for a free consultation or for more infro about our website solutions and how we can help you build a great online experience for your customers. And be sure to visit our portfolio page, for examples of how we’ve helped a variety of online businesses boost their customer retention and sales through updated online experiences.