We know sometimes to begin something; anything, can be the hardest thing. Where do I start? What do I need? Who should I talk to? It can often feel somewhat overwhelming and then inevitably gets left on the backburner for longer than it really needs to. Well as we have taken the step to build our new website we thought we would share some things to think about if you are building one for yourself. Hopefully this will help streamline your thinking when building a new site to help get you started.
It is essential that you place yourself in the user’s shoes when building your site. It is very important to understand how a potential customer may navigate through your site. Get people who are not in the business to test out the site. Give them challenges to find things and ask them how easy it was. There is a general “3-click” rule that says nothing should be more than 3 clicks away from the user. So constantly think about how someone using the site would find the experience. The simpler it is for them to understand the more time they will be on your site and the easier it will be for them to do what you want them to do.
2. Call to Actions
One very important feature on any business site is to remember to ask the user to actually do something. Buying, emailing, or simply sharing, whatever it may be make sure you ask them. It is much more likely a user will engage with you as a business if you ask them straight about what it is you want them to do. Without these calls to action you can hardly complain if no one contacts you. So remember ask, ask and then ask again.
3. Be concise and to the point
One of the traits in the modern world of the online user is their attention span is limited. They want to go to a site and see immediately what is there for them. If they can’t see it in a 20 second timeframe well you have more than likely lost their interest. This means the copy on your homepage needs to be short, punchy and to the point. What is it that you are offering the user? What benefits would they gain from you and your product? Why should they stay on the site? These are all questions you may want to consider when writing your copy out. Grab people’s attention in such a short time span is not easy. However get it right and your website and business will hugely benefit.
One of the key purposes of your site is to engage with the user. This can be done in a variety of ways through your copy or asking them to perform and action. However, one of the more subtle but often more effective ways is through the use of images. It is important you get images that represent what your company is about. They should be consistent with your values. Colours are also an important thing to consider. An aesthetically pleasing site that portrays who you are can have a strong influence on a user’s experience and opinion of your business.
5. Think Speed
One of the most forgotten aspects of any website is its speed. Have you considered how long it takes for a page to load? Well remember that short attention span of the user that will be severely tested if you don’t ensure your site is working as efficiently as it can. The sorts of things that can slow your site down are too many pages or too many large images. So think about streamlining files and pages to ensure your site has a good loading speed. This is something your web developer should be doing for you. Now you know though you can make sur you ask.
Finally, Don’t Forget Mobile!
In this day and age it shocks me how many sites don’t consider mobiles. When more than 50% of people open sites on their personal devices this is an absolute must to consider. You can get many responsive web designs now. These are sites that will resize when opened on a mobile. So you have no excuse. Make sure you build a site that suits your users behaviours.
There it is; a list of things to consider when building a website. I hope it helps you, even if just a little, to get you started on that new website project you have been putting off for a while.
Are there any tips you have to consider for a new site? Are there any things you think that maybe aren’t so important?