Currently, there are over 1.5 billion websites and that number is constantly growing.
So many websites, we hear you exclaim.
It’s understandably hard to stand out from the competition if you’re not applying the right practices to make your website distinctive.
But what makes a good website that stands out and converts traffic to actual sales?
In this article, we’ll explore why having a website is essential for your business in the modern economy and the factors that contribute to an effective and thriving website.
Features of a great website
It’s hard to stay relevant with thousands of competitors and beautiful websites out there. Make your website truly stand out by:
• Having a clear site hierarchy
• Keeping your navigation simple
• Boasting appealing visuals
• Making your site mobile-friendly
• Paying attention to fast load time
• Optimising on and off-page SEO
Having a clear site hierarchy
Good website design and site hierarchy are the top things that make a good website. Search engines, as well as users, find a site that’s easy to use a real treat.
These are called parent and child pages, and their structure is called a site hierarchy.
Visiting a site with a confusing web design can lead to frustration and dissatisfaction. You should aim to have an intuitive site that can be navigated through without much, if any, thinking.
Poor structuring will increase your bounce rate, negatively affecting your brand. The bounce rate is the percentage of people that leave your website after only viewing a single page.Put your customer first and ensure that this does not happen.
Keeping your navigation simple
A well-designed website should be easy to navigate. After all, your main job is to guide visitors down your sales funnel and get them to take a desired action.
Sounds complicated? It’s really not – basically, the menu, CTA buttons, and onsite search bars need to be easily found and relevant to the content around it.
Most sites have their menu buttons on the upper or bottom sections. Following a predictable structure will improve your user experience and sets the groundwork for a great website.
There’s no shame in borrowing good ideas from others, as long as you’re not blatantly copying anyone.
One of the common solutions many businesses love is to have a responsive, multi-level menu bar, well-structured content with a clear style, white space, and pictures, rather than a single wall of text.
Focus on simple site navigation: your users should not have to think twice when checking out your site. Don’t make them guess what will happen if they click on a particular menu item.
Boasting appealing visuals
It doesn’t take long for users to form an opinion about a website, so having an attractive web design is a top priority.
Considering the colour scheme and overall look and feel of your brand will help to make a good website a great one, type fonts are also massively important.
Consider setting aside a substantial budget to create a visual striking website by a professional.
Making your site mobile-friendly - this is a BIG one!
It’s also important to make sure your website is compatible with all browsers and devices.
Keep in mind, that the average website takes 87% longer to load on mobile. Have you ever closed a tab because the website took too long to load? If you’ve done it, chances are that people visiting your website will do so too.
Use tools like Google Analytics to check how much of your overall site traffic is coming from mobile devices.
Knowing more about your audience and their preferences helps you to provide your visitors with a seamless customer experience.
Plus, having a mobile-friendly website design makes it easier for you to make use of mobile-specific marketing strategies, like push notifications or text messages in retaining visitors on your site for longer.
In other words, making your site aesthetically pleasing for mobile users is an essential part of inclusive and consistent branding.
Paying attention to fast load time
If you’ve ever visited a slow-loading website, you are most likely familiar with the feeling of frustration that comes with it.
The truth is that 40% of visitors would rather leave than wait for a site to load for longer than 3 seconds. So, an unresponsive and slow website means a loss of revenue.
Luckily, there are precautions you can take to prevent page load time issues from happening to your site.
Picking an optimised, fast website template, compressing images, fixing any broken links – that’s just some of the few actions you can take.
Slow-loading pages adversely affect your SEO. Apply the best practices and use a tool like PageSpeed Insights to check your website’s performance.
Optimising on and off-page SEO
The importance of search engine optimization for a website’s ranking in SERPs (the search results pages) is well known to most website owners.
To fully utilise off-page SEO, focus on understanding what these external optimization practices are and how website owners employ them outside of their websites.
Back-linking is one of the best examples. It builds your brand reputation and lets the search engines know you have a quality site.
You can improve your backlink percentage with guest posts, or simply create relevant content people want to link too.
You could also consider using affiliate marketing to boost your off-page SEO. Partnering up with affiliate partners who create rankings for particular products or review products in a particular niche can be a great way to boost the reputation of your website.
On-page or local SEO is the practice of optimising your website from the web page itself.
Nowadays, many websites use different tools and services to help them maximise their on-page SEO.
What is more, the clearer your website’s structure is, the better your chance of optimising your website’s on-page SEO.
Crawling bots are attracted to websites with a clear structure, as it’s easier to crawl and index your content for search engines.
Keep your site structure tidy and ensure that each page has a true purpose on your site.
Why is having a website important?
Owning a website as a brand or an individual brings advantages such as the potential to reach a wider audience, ease of engagement, more opportunities for marketing and sales, and increased brand recognition.
It’s reported that less than two-thirds of small businesses have websites.
If you’re running a store for selling products or services, not having a website can limit your chances to expand your business, enjoy increased conversions, and generate sales.
Having a site for your business makes sense for various reasons:
• Establishing an online presence. It gives your brand more exposure, increasing its chance to compete.
• It’s cost-effective. Running and maintaining a site is affordable, especially when you consider the financially beneficial opportunities you gain.
• Reach a wider audience through advertising. Advertising products and services online expose you to a much wider audience. Plus, you can collect data and benefit from data-driven decision-making in your marketing.
• Accessibility by eliminating geographical and time zone boundaries. A site allows you to be accessible worldwide, as your success is not limited by geography.
• Building a community. A website allows simple communication through forums and message boards, which establishes trust between the customer and the brand.
• Opening new opportunities. Having a site opens you up to new opportunities such as partnerships, sponsorships, job offers, and online marketing opportunities.
• Medium for your own creativity. On your own site, you design and write each article. So, if you’re a creative person, you can put your passion to use when it comes to your content.
Ready to create something special? Let's go!
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