Whether you manufacture airplane parts or sell ice cream near the beach, having a website is vital to succeeding in today’s online world.
For most business owners, hiring the best website designers from the best website design agencies is a high priority.
But simply having a website isn’t enough. A badly designed website can, in fact, damage the reputation of your business and even reduce sales.
Here are some questions to ask yourself to find out whether your website’s design is pulling your company up to the top or weighing it down like an anchor.
Does It Look Good?
While aesthetics are subjective, your site must look professional, beautiful, and relevant to your audience. Some elements to look out for are:
- Does the look and feel of the site align with your industry? A toy store would benefit from a colorful and cartoony website, while a law firm should be professional and serious.
- Are the looks consistent? Drastically changing designs are both jarring and confusing to visitors attempting to navigate your site.
- Is the site readable? Fonts need to be large and readable, and colors should contrast well. Make sure graphics don’t obscure any parts of your text.
- Is the content concise? Value your potential customers’ time. In fact, only 20% of online users fully read online content.
Does It Get the Job Done?
Even the most beautiful website is useless if it doesn’t do the job. The best web designers tailor their sites to their customer demographic and its needs. Visitors should understand clearly and quickly what your firm offers and be able to navigate to any information they need easily.
For instance, a restaurant’s website needs to place its contact information, opening hours, menu, and a map of locations in plain sight on the front page.
Is It Accessible?
As mentioned, how easily your customers can find what they want on your site is a huge part of its success. Some aspects to look out for are:
- How long does the page load? Internet speeds have evolved to the point that many expect pages to load instantly. Make sure your site keeps up. According to Google, 53% of mobile users leave a page if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load.
- Does the site offer tools for accessibility? A dedicated search bar in the top right is a common tactic for finding specific topics. Also, consider adding a sitemap at the bottom.
- Does the site function on other web browsers? While Chrome and Firefox are common options, don’t neglect Safari, Edge, Opera, and other browsers. They’re free to install, so test them out.
Does It Have a Mobile Site?
Marketing has become more digital and mobile than ever before. Simply working on a smartphone isn’t enough nowadays; tell your website design agency to produce a dedicated layout optimized for mobile devices.
Alexa reported in early 2017 that 4/5ths of its top sites had mobile versions, and 57% of online users won’t recommend a business with a badly designed mobile site.
Is the SEO Good?
SEO, or search engine optimization, is the practice of tweaking your website so that it ranks highly in search engine results. Since search engines can detect text much better than images, mention the bulk of your content in plain text form. In addition,
- Always provide alt text for images.
- Optimize the site’s code so it runs efficiently, facilitating search engine indexing.
- Provide a Meta description, a small blurb that will show up under the search result entry.
- Use keywords relevant to your industry so only relevant visitors are coming to your site.
What Metrics Should I Look Out For?
Website development companies always use tools like Google Analytics for data to measure success. Monitor figures like these constantly.
- Where are new visitors coming from? There are four main sources.
- Organic searching, or when a visitor finding your site through a search engine. High organic searching numbers indicate strong SEO.
- External linking, or when another website links to yours. Having plenty of backlinks indicates you’re becoming well-known in your industry.
- Direct linking, or whenever a visitor enters your site through a browser bookmark or by typing in the URL directly. This metric shows you have dedicated fans.
- Social media linking, or whenever a visitor enters the site through Facebook, Twitter, or any other social media platform.
- Is the “bounce rate” too high? In other words, are visitors leaving your website only after seeing one page? If so, this may suggest either poor site usability or poor SEO where the wrong kinds of visitors are finding your site.
- How is the conversion rate? Your website’s purpose is to turn visitors into customers. Tracking the number of downloads, email subscriptions, and sales is worth doing.
Trust the Globalgraphics Team
With over 21 years experience in website design you couldn’t be in safer hands than with Globalgraphics Web Design in Toronto. Get in touch with us if you’re interested in learning more about website design, the statistics behind it, or design in general.