Don't be that small business with the shitty web design!
As a small business, your website is one of the most vital aspects of your business. It is usually at the forefront of all your marketing and branding efforts and is the first thing people see or interact with when learning about your products or services. The funny thing is, for most businesses, it is the absolute worse part of their business. Small business websites are often plagued by outdated information, less than ideal graphics, and stock photography that was bad in 2010. Chances are you or someone you know has a small business web design that doesn’t do their company justice. In fact, it is likely causing them to lose money and customers.
So what can you do to make sure your small business web design is generating leads and revenue? How can you make sure you are not losing potential clients and customers to your competitors? Below are 6 recommendations to keep in mind when you are creating a small business web design and how to get the most out of your online presence.
1. Understand your target market before you start the design process
Understanding your target market goes beyond talking to your friends and asking if they would buy your products or services. It takes research. Researching your target market can be easier than you think. By understanding your market, you can create your small business web design with those people in mind. Here’s a really easy trick for finding out who your market is.
Step 1: https://serps.com/tools/rank_checker and enter the top keyword phrase you want to rank for. This will identify who is direct competition.
Step 2: write down the top 3 results and find their facebook page links. The easiest way is by doing a Google search.
Step 3: visit http://simplymeasured.com and enter your competitor’s facebook page link.
What results is complete target market results for those following your competitors on social media. This will help determine the direction of your small business website design.
2. K.I.S.S – Keep it simple stupid
Your website does not need to have 10 images in a photo slider on the homepage. Did you know when someone ends up on your website for the first time, you have 3.2 seconds to “wow” them. That is hardly enough time to play 10 of your most amazing photographs in a slideshow. So…save the bandwidth and display the single photo that will make an impact. Most people access the internet at some point via mobile. If your small business website is weighed down with heavy graphics, flashy animations, audio files and glittery rainbows, they will leave your site before it ever has a chance to load. Focus on making your small business web design easy to navigate and follow.
3. Clear Call To Actions
Have you ever visited a website that had so many things to do it wasn’t quite clear what to do at all? This is because the designer didn’t really think about the purpose and reason for each page or section of each page. Every bit of content and element should exist for a reason. You, as the website owner decide where you want the visitor to go… not the other way around. Create clear call to actions that direct visitors to key areas or conversion points. Remember, there are multiple lead types visiting and not all will want to buy right away.
4. Out of date content
One of the worse things you can do for your website is nothing at all. A small business web design is suppose to reflect the company today, not the company 3 years ago. Make sure your site content is relevant and engaging. Make sure it is up to date and reflects your current prices and offerings.
5. One size does not fit all
Ever tried on something that said “one size fits all”? You quickly found out that it doesn’t really fit AT ALL. Sure, you could put it on, but did it work? Did it do what it was designed to do? Same thing with your website. Find out who your market is and what your market likes to see. If you sell multiple products, don’t try to market every single product individually to the target market it caters to, aim for the broader target market. An example is an electronics store. They can’t feasibly market to photographers, video game players, stereo lovers and computer geeks. They market to a broader audience and in that audience exists their niche markets.
6. Don’t DIY without help from a professional
If you simply don’t have the budget and just want to get that website online… DON’T! Unless you have a professional to mentor you through the process. Sites like Godaddy and Wix offer the ability to build a website yourself. Do you know what you really need though? Do you know what good design is? Do you know what layouts are proven to work? Chances are, probably not. It is better to simply fill out profiles on sites like Google, Merchant Circle, and Yelp, and direct people there. At least the content will be laid out concisely. Save your money for the small business web design that will represent your business fully.
Your small business web design is one of the most important parts of your business. Don’t half-ass an attempt at a website simply because you know you have to have one. If the budget doesn’t allow, look into sites like SquareSpace. They offer template powered websites that are professional and clean. Although they may not be unique to your brand, they will represent your business better than an attempted (failed) website built by you or a relative. Take your online small business web design seriously!