As a business, you probably have some sort of website (hopefully), if not you are really missing out on reaching potential customers. If you do have a website, you most likely fall into one of these three categories: your website working for you (yay!) , you working for your website (that’s no fun) , or your website working against all of your hard work (saboteur!). In this blog, I’ll tell you the five signs of a good website that converts users and works for you, and tell you if your website needs some updating.
Before we really get started, we need to define what a “good” website is. A good website is one that works as an extension of yourself when you aren’t there to talk to customers. In essence, it should be the best employee that you have on your team. It should represent your brand perfectly, give customers the information they desire/need, and ultimately lead to new clients/ customers to help grow your business. It should be intentional and well thought out from beginning to end. It should grow as your business grows and never become a stagnant page living somewhere in the depths of the internet. A good website works for you, not against you. Let’s take a look at 5 easy ways to tell if your website is getting the job done.
Branding is key to a well functioning website. Without proper branding, your customer honestly might not even know where they are and if they can really trust the information on your website. When you think of branding, your mind probably goes straight to logo, but branding is way more than that. Branding is who you are as a business. Sure, it is your logo, color scheme, and fonts, but it is also your tone of voice, how your photographs look, the quality of your service, and how you interact with your customers. Does your website look like your business? Does it sound like you and portray the quality of service you provide? Or is it just a stagnant landing page with your operating hours and address? Again, your website is your best employee, would you want your employees to come in wearing the competitors colors and talking about their service? Or would you want them to live and breathe your product/service in every way possible?
- Dedicated Landing Pages
Many self-made websites are just one page with all of the businesses products/services listed, the hours of operation, and an address. While this is an easy way to get your information out there, it probably isn’t the best way to advertise your services to the internet. In order to show up better in search results, you should have individual pages for your products/services. So if your business offers three primary services: accounting services, clerical services, and office organization – then you should have separate pages for each of these services. This way if someone searches for one, it shows up instead of being lost underneath an unrelated page. This also helps customers navigate your website once they are there and find exactly what they are looking for.
- Clear Call To Action
A clear call to action helps your customers know what action they should take on your website in order to get what they need, or what action you want them to take. Example: “Call Now” or “Get a Quote Today” In order to set a call to action, you need to know the overall goal of your website. Some examples of goals are: to sell a product or service online, to lead individuals to your brick and mortar, or to provide information.
Let’s say you run a roof repair company called Ready Roof Repair and the main goal of your website is to get customers to schedule a free roof inspection. Your call to action should probably be more than just “get a quote” because everyone does that and you want to stand out from the crowd. A better call to action might be “Call us to get your free Ready Roof inspection today!” or “Fill out our Ready Repair questionnaire for your free quote!” Feel free to have some fun with it. The less generic, the better.
You also don’t want confusing call to actions or call to actions living in the wrong place. For example, Ready Roof Repair may also sell roofing materials and do attic repairs, too. So it would be really confusing if you had a Roof Inspection call to action on the page that talks about attic repairs and vice versa. Your Call to Actions need to be intentional and well placed as they are a driving force of conversions for your website.
- Load Time & Functionality
How fast your website loads and how well it works is pivotal in order to keep customers on your website. If a website takes longer than 1 second to load, many people give up and leave the website. 1 second! Which is why you need to make sure your website is optimized for the best speed. The easiest way you can do this by making sure your images are no larger than 1920×1080 pixels. You can check your site speed and run some diagnostics by going to Google Page Speed. If your website loads quickly, great!
Now you have to make sure it has good functionality. Can people access all of your pages without having to search around your website like a maze? It is answering the most commonly asked questions about your business? Do all of the links and buttons work? Is it helping you accomplish your business goals? These are just a few things that can make a huge difference in the functionality of your website.
- SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
SEO ( or search engine optimization) is the behind the scenes part of your website that makes sure you are showing up in search engine results, like Google. Setting up good SEO helps your website show up more, and show up better than it would without taking any action. Many people will go through an agency to set up a professional SEO, but there are a few easy steps you can take yourself to enhance your website’s SEO. First, make sure you have content that is easy to read. If a person has trouble understanding your website’s content, a robot certainly will too. Set up some main keywords that you think people will use when they search for you on the internet. Once you have a list of keywords, go through your content and make sure those words are sprinkled throughout in the right places. You can also set up a Google Search Console account for your website to help show you what you are doing well, and where you need to improve your SEO. It is free and a very powerful tool for your business!
How To Tell If You Need A New Website
A new website may seem like a daunting task, but a poorly set up site does more harm than good to your business. It not only makes you hard to find on the internet, it also harms your business reputation. It only takes users about 50 milliseconds to determine if they want to stay on your website, so a good site just might be the deciding factor between you and your competitors for your customers. Here are a few signs you need a new or improved website: (You can also take our free website audit quiz below)
- Your website doesn’t have any branding
- Your branding is there, but it’s outdated or weak
- You aren’t getting any traffic on your website (try out Google Analytics to see if you are getting traffic)
- There are no clear calls to action on your website or your calls to action are confusing
- You have poorly written content
- Your website has no goal
- All of your products/services are listed on one page and have no dedicated landing pages
- Your website runs slow
- Your website does not function smoothly
- Your website isn’t a proper representation of your business
To sum it all up, if you don’t have a good website, you are hurting your business. Your website should be the best employee you have and be there to guide customers and answer questions when you can’t be. You should have the same trust in your website as you do in yourself, and if you don’t, then it’s time to get a new website that works for you and not against you.
Ryan is a web and graphic designer from Knoxville, TN. He holds a BFA in Graphic Design from The University of Tennessee. Ryan loves coffee, photography, and designing interactive experiences (and dogs but who doesn’t?).
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