It is a well-known truth that every business necessitates a website to be victorious in this digital age. For many, this is difficult to handle because most people frankly don’t possess the ability to create one themselves. Yes, you can hire a website developer and freelance content writer. However, the cost of these services is unattainable for a lot of new start-ups and small businesses.
There is a lot that goes into building an influential website, making yourself accustomed to the method and what to expect gives you more determination to move through the process without faltering along the way, to ensure that you’re making the utmost of your online presence.
If you aren’t tech-savvy, it’s normal to feel lost or perplexed when figuring it all out. A bunch of complex elements that conform to building a website and these processes takes place behind a screen. These 13 things you might not know about your website will better paint a picture of what it’s truly like to an effective website.
MOBILE-FRIENDLY WEBSITE IS NOT NEGOTIABLE
A study made in October 2016 shows that mobile traffic officially exceeded desktop traffic on the internet. People are more likely to view websites from their mobile devices versus their desktops simply because it's fast and easy. This trend is growing stronger and it’s becoming a standard habit today. By making your website mobile-friendly you can reach more and more customers around the globe.
To be competitive in today's online market, having a mobile-responsive website becomes a necessity. No matter how remarkable, valuable and unique your products or services are if it’s not readily accessible from a mobile device your business is as if non-existent. People will regard a website they have a great mobile experience with credible. In business, reputation is everything and most businesses can’t bear to deliver customers a bad experience whether digital or otherwise.
Google says 61% of users are unlikely to return to a mobile site they had trouble accessing and 40% visit a competitor’s site instead. Mobile usability is regarded as the third most valuable of all the factors looked at by Google. Having a mobile-responsive website not only paves the way for sales and lead generation, but it also ensures your business is ahead of the competition.
WEBSITE LOAD TIME IS STILL A THING
Website speed plays a pivotal role in the success of your business. Clicking on a website link may look like a simple thing but behind the scenes, hundreds of requests are spontaneously pinged throughout in short seconds and a lot can go wrong.
When your website takes longer than anticipated to load, it negatively affects the user experience instantaneously, any time your UX takes a hit so does your conversion rate. You’ll apparently see higher page abandonment and bounce rates as well. Studies show that an extra two seconds of loading time can increase your website’s bounce rate by 103% and can cause a 7% drop in conversion rates, even fractions of a second matter. Additionally, your website speed impacts its visibility and searchability. Website speed is now a Google ranking factor. If you don’t have a decent website performance, your website’s visibility on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) may drop which could result in lower traffic levels.
With your business success at risk, website speed can’t be disregarded. Optimizing your website’s performance as fully as you can is vital. A clever way to start is by testing the load time to recognize how delayed your website populates then work on minimizing it. We’ve listed some of the common factors for slow website speed.
- Advertisement on the website is over-sized and too many, and visitor’s browser doesn’t support the advertisement format such as Flash content which is not supported by Google Chrome.
- Large and wrong format images expectedly take a great time to load up and unoptimized high-resolution images can use heaps of bandwidth while loading.
- Uncompressed codes, unnecessary white spaces, large and dense elements can make your website’s stylesheet grow larger in size.
- Your web host provider is giving you a shared server, which means you’re sharing space, resources and in a queue with many other websites.
A slowdown in website loading speed can decline visitor engagement and reduces business revenue.
USE IMAGES FROM YOUR ACTUAL BUSINESS (NOT TERRIBLE, STOCK IMAGES)
When it comes to online imagery, it’s not so much about having images, it is concerning on the sense of texture, size, scale, detail, context & brand. Stock photos are everywhere. It’s easy to click around and get photos online, and if that doesn’t work, it’s even more convenient to pay a small fee to utilize a licensed photo on your website. This is excellent, right? Well, from visual content experts it’s not so much.
According to MDG Advertising, 67% of online shoppers rated high-quality images as being “very important” to their purchase decision, which was slightly more than “product specific information”, “long descriptions”, and “reviews & ratings” Joann Peck & Suzanne B. Shu of UCLA published a study called “The Effect of Mere Touch on Perceived Ownership”. They found that explicit ownership of the product came from strong and thorough imagery. Furthermore, psychologists Kirsten Ruys & Diedrick Stapel of the Tilburg Institute for Behavioral Economics Research found that imagery has the ability to influence a person’s mood.
As it turns out, cheesy stock photos can be an immense turnoff to your visitors because they’re impersonal. Just put, most stock photos don’t do a genuine job on their own of portraying your brand. In visual content, always choose to go with natural, consistent, and genuine images. If a stock photo meets those criteria, it could be a good option except if it’s also outmoded and overused. When using stock photography, always step with care and if you’re in doubt, get a photographer.
YOUR WEBSITE NEEDS TO BE SEO FRIENDLY
The essence of developing an SEO-friendly website is indisputable. Blending SEO optimizations into your website enhance your presence on search engines, and more remarkably on Google SERPs. As Google accounts for more than 90% of global organic search traffic, it is essential to ease the bot’s job in order to be placed quickly and easily. Here are some pointers to make your website more SEO-friendly.
- Create your URLs user-friendly so that you have different ones for every page. Don’t dismiss the more distinct features.
- Dodge duplicate Content as it will penalize your rankings particularly when it befalls to internal duplicates.
- Build an XML sitemap that helps search engines perceive your website’s composition when they are crawling it.
- Optimize it for all devices so your visitors can enjoy a good user experience.
- Concentrate on internal linking that helps to build page authority and enables your visitors to navigate easily within your website.
- Optimize your photographs as this is crucial when it comes to SEO
- Response to remarks as it allows you to have a thriving community.
- Evade keyword stuffing strategies as it can possibly hurt your rankings.
YOU NEED TO KNOW WHO YOUR AUDIENCE IS AND DEVELOP A CUSTOMER OR BUYER PERSONA IS A GREAT WAY TO START
In business, it's rarely the case where “Everyone” is the target customer. A target audience is a group of people to whom you'll focus your marketing efforts because they're most likely to convert into customers. To be successful in audience targeting, narrow down “everyone” to a smaller group of people to easily manage them.
One of the most effective ways to know your audience is to develop a buyer persona. A buyer persona is a model that defines your objective customer, based on thorough audience research. The approach is to devise a profile of your target customer to craft targeted marketing communications to them. This makes it simpler for you to tailor-fit your content, messaging, product development, and services to the specific needs, behaviors, and concerns of different groups. To gain a comprehensive understanding of what makes your best customers tick, it's crucial to form specific personas for your business. We’ve listed easy steps to create a buyer persona for your business.
- Do thorough research about your current customer by gathering all of the information you can like, location, age, interest, data from analytics tools and even your competitor's customers.
- Determine customer pain points by setting up search streams to monitor mentions of your brand, products, and competitors, questions asked of your customers.
- Recognize customer goals that might be undeviatingly relevant to resolutions you can provide.
- Know how your brand can help your customer's pain points and goals.
Understanding your target audience weighs more than you might think. Don’t assume that everyone is a possible client. Instead, narrow down the precise people who will not only want your product or service but also have the way and urge to acquire it.
PEOPLE ONLY SPEND A FEW SECONDS ON YOUR WEBSITE BEFORE DECIDING
Most visitors don't have the time to dig through your website and figure out how it works, all they ever care about is finding the relevant information that they need. Navigation is crucial for the overall user experience throughout the website, it can make or break your website’s overall performance in terms of visitors retention, engagement, and shifting them through the conversion funnel
Good navigation can speed up search and allows visitors to search with ease and confidence before a call to action can be made. Having simple and consistency in navigation ensures consistency in user experience. On the other hand, bad navigation can appear unstructured and disorganized.
The navigation tools help break content into a logical and coherent group. Your visitors will have a clear understanding of your brand and business. Additionally, good navigation improves your website's usability and can place your website on higher ranks because it works well with SEO. Therefore, code the navigation in an accessible and usable way ensuring great user experience.
To optimize your website’s navigation, we’ve listed some essential best practices.
- Keep it consistent in both how and where it appears on your website in that way, your visitors will have a good experience, ease of use, and increases their ability to find relevant information they are interested in.
- Separate categories distinctly and noticeably. The category headings must be segregated visually from the sub-categories, even if the categories are related.
- Build all navigation elements clickable links even with drop-down options where clicking a sub-category section.
- Employ precise navigation titles to represent the linked page so visitors grasp what they’re going to perceive and make sure all link verbiage, whether textual or in an image, perfectly represents the equal pages.
- Make each clickable image has ALT text to ensure that visitors know what the link is, regardless of how they are viewing your website.
- Assure the search functionality works it must always provide results, related search and offset misspellings.
Avoid using counter-productive design patterns because they are often missed by many visitors. Design your website for better user interface and user experience, this will allow your visitors easy navigation and quickly find the information they are looking for.
IF YOU AREN’T USING HEADLINES ON YOUR WEBSITE CORRECTLY, YOU MAY BE DOOMING YOUR SITE TO THE DEPTHS OF GOOGLE
When it comes to your website, capturing your target audience's attention is crucial to the success of your business. Studies and research show that just by changing your headline homepage can considerably minimize the bounce rate and raise conversion rate by up to 40%. Therefore, your headline needs to stand out from your competitors. We know that writing a great headline is not easy but there are guidelines to help improve it.
- Keep your headline brief to convey your brand effectively.
- Use catchy words for your headline and include the unique features of your brand.
- Use effective keywords in your headline to catch the attention of your target audience.
The point is, great headlines are meant to direct traffic and links to your content. With that in mind, it’s extremely beneficial to use concise, catchy, and effective keywords in your headline that will catch the attention of your target audience.
WEBSITES NEED TO BE UPDATED: NEW CONTENT, NEW FEATURES, NEW OFFERS, UPDATED SOFTWARE
Your website is usually the first impression of your company and your fundamental marketing tool as well as a resource for your clients. Are you pleased to send customers to your website? This is a critical question to consider because whatever you deem about your website, visitors probably hold the same. If your website hasn’t been updated in years, like circa 2010 graphics, flash players, and navigation that goes nowhere or the employee who designed it moved on and no one took over, you likely need a new website. Having an embarrassing website is like owning a literally rumpled house, you just don’t fancy inviting people back.
If you’ve created your website several years ago, chances are it’s behind in terms of layout and functionality. Its code is possibly outdated making it incompatible with the latest and popular browsers. Long passed the heydays when it was enough to just have a website, people have become more savvy and picky these days, with so many accessible information, different brands and businesses, competing for your customer’s attention has become wicked. Consequently, it’s imperative that you keep your website current and in line with up-to-date layout trends, technological progressions and search engine algorithms.
Your website should not only showcase your products or services but also its look and feel. It needs to display professionalism and accurately reflect your brand. Make sure it works properly and represents you the way you want to be represented in a positive light. By taking the steps to rectify any inaccuracies or problems you find, can improve your website and enhance your user experience.
A dull and difficult to navigate website can turn off your visitors. “Old school is cool” does not apply when it comes to the Internet and the digital world. Website standards continually evolve which means your potential leads preferences changes faster than a flash of lightning. What was popular in the past, will definitely not in the future. Most people are wired to like fresh, latest, and up-to-date so stay ahead of the game. If you want your business to succeed, always put your best foot forward, make your website memorable with fresh content, stunning layouts, and impressive functionalities.
YOU CAN TRACK HOW MANY PEOPLE VISIT YOUR WEBSITE USING GOOGLE ANALYTICS AND EVEN VIEW WHAT THEY ACTUALLY SEE WITH TOOLS LIKE HOTJAR
If you run your website, it’s necessary to know who’s on your website right now. That’s why you require real-time visitor tracking that gives you a means to spontaneously see what people are doing on your website in real-time like Google Analytics. It's the most well-known website visitor tracking tool. The app has several various features to monitor the usage of your website’s mobile app and see the performance of any promotions you’re running, and it's entirely free to use.
Web analytics software collects data and displays it in a composition you can use to make business decisions. This gives you access to data such as how many people visited your site for the first time, the keywords they searched for when they found you, what links they clicked on and the “bounce rate” or how long they stayed before leaving.
Hotjar, on the other hand, is behavior analytics and user feedback service that aids you to understand the behavior of your website users and get their feedback through tools such as heatmaps, session recordings, and surveys. Hotjar complements the data and insights you get from Google Analytics. It’s an industry-leading and easy-to-use service that consolidates analysis and feedback tools to help you determine what’s happening on your website, what your users care about, and what they have to say.
Web analytics tools are important to determine the effectiveness of your online marketing strategies, content, user experience as it gives you a better understanding of your audience or visitors.
SIMPLE IS GOOD. COMPLEX IS BAD. SIMPLE MEANS CLEAR. AND CLEAR IS IMPORTANT TO GET YOUR MESSAGE ACROSS FAST
We’ll prove to you that less is more. Converge on quality over quantity because it’s what both search engines and customers do look for. Your website must converse about your product or services, answer questions and offer genuine value. Usually, this includes at least:
- A Homepage
- An About page
- A Blog
- A Contact page
You may choose to include a testimonial page or past work but keep things simple and streamlined to avoid overwhelming your visitors. Also, don't turn to blogs as a way to update your website because each blog post is technically a new page.
Most search engines strive to deliver the most useful result of a search, therefore concentrate on quality.
If your website doesn’t seem to be drawing in leads even though your social media and email marketing campaigns are bringing in lots of traffic, but no one is taking that next step then it's time to take a hard look. Leads are the life-blood of your business. Your website is intended to work, not to simply sit there and look beautiful. It should be generating leads to help you earn sales and pull in more revenue. However, some businesses struggle with this and while there are a variety of causes for this, your website itself could be the problem. We’ve gathered reasons why leads don’t convert to help you turn the missed a goldmine.
- Inadequate follow-up, respond to messages on social media, email, and return phone calls promptly to connect with potential clients.
- You’re not mobile-friendly, recent studies show that most users prefer to use mobile devices than desktop so optimize your website otherwise, you'd lose tons of traffic and customer simply because they can't find you
- You're not consistent, make certain your content, design and PR is constant in essence, number, and sharing.
- You’re dull, nobody wants to see common landing pages, call-to-actions or web copy so convert your engaging personality into online content.
- Providing equal significance to each lead, classify your leads according to their needs and work on them respectively.
CHOOSE A WEBSITE BUILDING PLATFORM THAT HAS FEATURES THAT YOU NEED BOTH NOW AND IN THE FUTURE. MOST DIY PLATFORMS SUCH AS WIX AND WEEBLY DON’T HAVE EVERY FEATURE YOU MAY NEED. WORDPRESS IS THE MOST FLEXIBLE OPTIONS.
A website builder is an online website building platform that helps you build a website. Online website builders are intended to be easy and simple to use, empowering anyone to build a website effortlessly using drag-and-drop functionality, no coding knowledge or experience is required. Zero drama.
WordPress is distinct from the other website builder platform because it is free to use, just pay for hosting, and this tends to be a lot less steep than other website builders. You can build powerful, elegant sites without acquiring a lot of coding. It has tons of tools, Jetpack essential features built-in, including site statistics, basic SEO, and social media sharing. Its editor is speedy, instinctive, and includes HTML and Markdown support. Your work is automatically saved every few seconds, so you’ll never miss a word. You get full access to WordPress codes so you can customize any pre-made themes and designs, and with so many plugins and theme options, you can add any features or functionalities to your website whenever you want. Sky’s the limit!
WordPress also has the option of WordPress Premium, which is an upgraded version of a WordPress website with access to advanced themes, features, custom domain names, constant live support and more.
Other Features include:
- Custom domain name
- WordPress.com and ad-free
- Email & Live Chat support
- Free domain for One Year
- Jetpack Essentials Features
- Dozens to Unlimited Premium Themes
- Basic to Advanced Design Customization
- 6GB Storage space up to 200 GB
- Remove WordPress.com Ads
PROs of their FREE plan:
- Mobile Responsiveness
- SEO Ready
- RSS Feed Feature
- Social Media Integration
CONs of their FREE plan:
- Cannot upload custom themes
- Ads on all free websites
- Cannot upload plugins
- Minimal maintenance support
WordPress Self Hosted includes software files, a selection of templates in the PHP programming communication that can be altered by any user. It has a broad array of customizable templates, plugins for combined functionality, and a visual text editor, and it can be worked directly with its files and stylesheet for explicit customization. This self-host WordPress also has the option of WordPress Premium, which is an upgraded version of a WordPress website with access to advanced themes, features, custom domain names, constant live support and more.
The self-hosted version of WordPress needs to be maintained by the user himself, aside from features offered by the hosting provider and install the plugins and other components for customizing the website.
WordPress makes what you design and you can code it to create almost anything. Whatever a business’s specifications are, it has the packages plus a variety of basic and premium plugins fit for your site. Gratitude to its numerous themes and simple access to its source files. The biggest drawback is being overwhelmed and not knowing what you need to get started. Establishing a website using WordPress can take time depending on the theme and plugins you add. But, once the platform is set up and you grasp your way around, it is honestly uncomplicated. It demands time to familiarize it but the access you have surpasses the time to understand it.
We take pride in building amazing websites in just 7 days without breaking the bank because we believe that stunning websites don't need to be expensive. We've helped businesses grow for over a decade.
We build websites at a fixed price, no crazy contracts, and no lock-in maintenance cost.