Initial impressions are always the most memorable. Upon first seeing your website, what do you hope visitors will think? To begin the process of making your website professional and optimized for your unique KPIs, you need to answer this question as honestly as possible.
Because of how short of a window you have to make an impact, less than 8 seconds to be exact, it is crucial that your website be in tip-top form.
When a person goes to your website, the first thing they’ll notice is the aesthetics (design and feel) (UX). Is your point being through clearly? Would you say it’s simple to figure out what to click on? Do you hear the CTAs clearly?
Not only does a professionally designed website appear nice, but it also functions very well, allowing visitors to easily locate the information they want via interesting content, relevant connections, and user-friendly navigation.
Your content marketing will be useless if visitors leave your site instantly because of its poor design or navigation. Your website’s popularity (or lack thereof) might explode overnight.
So, to assist you to create the website you’ve always wanted and that your viewers would like, here are nine suggestions:
- Focusing on Mobile First in Design
Increasingly, those who visit your website will do it on their smartphones or tablets. Web traffic from mobile devices has already surpassed that from desktop computers, and it’s continuing to rise. Mobile optimization is a must for every website owner.
In order to make your site mobile-friendly, you must code it such that it responds to the user’s device screen size and orientation, making it simple to read and navigate even on a tiny portable device. The responsiveness of your site to mobile devices should be a primary design goal.
You should build your desktop site in a manner that it can be readily and conveniently modified for mobile so that your mobile site has the same brand identity and personality as the desktop version.
- Decide Between a Custom Design and a Premade Template
You’ll need to choose between starting from scratch with your website’s design and using a template when you develop or rebuild it. The abundance of website templates and do-it-yourself tools available today makes it possible for even the most unskilled designer to produce a site that seems like it was designed by an expert.
However, the possibilities are endless when developing a unique website. In terms of design, layout, picture placement, amount of pages, usage of unique components like bespoke video and animations, and the website’s general operation, a custom site will provide you much more leeway than a template-based design.
However, developing a custom website takes a lot more effort, time, and money. Custom design vs. template design is a topic that every company owner must investigate for himself. And if you need assistance in further developing your website, Website X5 is an easy-to-use software to create a mobile-friendly website.
- Minimize Page Load Times to Improve User Experience and Retention
You may have the most polished website in the world and yet fail. If your page takes more than 10 seconds to load, you’ve already lost the reader’s interest. Kissmetrics’ data shows that the longer it takes for a web page to load, the greater the page abandonment rate.
If your site takes too long to load, Google will punish you by placing you lower in search results. Page design and programming may influence both SEO and loading speed.
There are a variety of things you can do to increase page performance, like optimizing the code, decreasing the amount of redirects, optimizing pictures, and more.
- Implement Robotic Chat to Increase Sales.
Six of the top ten most popular mobile applications are messaging apps, and this trend is expected to continue. It’s only logical that businesses would take note, and start using chat apps to improve their online support for customers.
There is a solution, and it’s called bots; more precisely, it’s called chatbots, and it’s an automated, artificial intelligence-based tool for chatting online that is already responsible for more sales. A chat box will pop up on the page when you visit a website that employs chatbots, asking you questions or starting a discussion to help you find what you’re looking for.
However, it’s not a human customer service representative; rather, it’s a computer software designed to make you happy.
Business enterprises aren’t the only ones who can benefit from using chatbots. You may find several chatbot services that make it simple to design and deploy your own chatbot on your website. Have a look at them as a starting point for your own work.
- Follow SEO Guidelines and Make It Simple for Customers to Locate Your Business
We get it, SEO is invisible, yet it is essential for a successful website. How simple (or difficult) it is for prospective clients to locate your website via a search depends depend on the SEO approach you choose.
Don’t make the typical marketing error of neglecting search engine optimization in favor of concentrating just on aesthetics while creating your website. What good is a sleek and well-designed website if no one can discover it?
The titles and meta descriptions of your web pages should be written with search engine optimization in mind.
Plan your SEO strategy before you worry about typefaces and photos, since it will have a direct influence on the content and layout of your website.
- Don’t Be Afraid to Play With Different Fonts to See What Works Best for Your Project
Sans Serif fonts don’t have any flourishes or extra characters that might be difficult to see on a screen. For a long time, Sans Serif typefaces were the go-to for website safety and readability. Web designers tended to frown upon anything that seemed overly ornate or cluttered.
But today, thanks to much increased screen resolutions, designers are eagerly embracing the opportunity to try out novel, intriguing, and arresting typefaces. There is no lack of font options, since there are over 43,000 different types of fonts accessible for use on the internet.
This includes the return of serif fonts, which were previously considered obsolete. Try with different fonts, sizes, and colors; these elements are all expected to be popular this year.
Keep in mind that the font you choose may have a significant impact on how a reader perceives the content of a page.
- Increase Interaction and Sales With Powerful Video
There’s no getting around it: video is dominating online content. By 2022, eighty-two percent of all consumer internet traffic will be video.
The popularity of video marketing is on the rise, and it’s easy to see why given the high engagement and return on investment of online video.
In today’s visually-focused, rapidly-evolving era, there’s no denying that video is a very engaging, high-conversion tool, and that any serious website should include video into its design somehow.
Moreover, if you want a short URL for your videos, you can use custom URL shortener to make your URL videos more appealing to your visitors.
- Background Pictures Attract Attention by Making Your Homepage Stand Out
The vast majority of us learn best by seeing, rather than through hearing or doing. That helps to explain why visual information is retained by the majority (80%), but written information is retained by just the minority (20%).
You must remember this information while creating your homepage. Are you going to employ a certain style for the backdrop?
What’s more likely to grab people’s attention—a unified color scheme with a big headline, or maybe an illustration? Make sure that whatsoever you choose fits nicely with the identity and goals of your company.
- The Definition of Simplicity Has to Be Rethought: Keep It Basic, but Make It Fun
Web users hate sites that are disorganized because they are unpleasant to look at and much more difficult to navigate. Maintaining an uncluttered, well-organized website that clearly and concisely directs visitors to the information they need is essential.
Cognitive fluency is key here; individuals are happier and more at ease when their expectations for how things should be are actually realized.
Websites that cater to users’ implicit expectations tend to perform better than those that don’t. Get creative and show off your company’s unique personality.
For instance, the recent “brutalism” movement encourages designers to disregard all conventional wisdom about how a website should look and instead try something completely new and radical.
However, there are standards that should be met even in a “brutal” design. As links, they remain, and they are prominently displayed for maximum visibility.
In spite of this, hamburger symbols may still be used to access secondary menus. Maintain a minimal approach, but make sure that approach is uniquely you. Provide a welcoming environment that will make your customers feel at ease.
How Do You Feel In Your Gut?
There is also the fact that the success of your website will be determined by the initial impression it gives to visitors. It’s also crucial to pay attention to the emotional response your own website elicits in you.
After spending many hours, days, weeks, even months poring over every inch of your website, it’s understandably more difficult to judge your response. That’s why it’s important to step away every once in a while, give it some time to marinate for a day or two, and then return to it with a clear head.
As a result, you’ll be more receptive to the advice of your intuition. You may also ask for opinions from people in your personal and professional networks.
Even after your site is live, you should check its analytics regularly to see how users are interacting with it and make any necessary improvements. In any case, that’s material for a different article…
This may all look quite complicated if you are not a web designer. Keep in mind, too, that there is no magic formula for creating a fantastic website.
Finding motivation and ideas to fuel the design process may be as simple as conducting some research into what others are doing. And if you know what features constitute a good website, it will be much simpler to collaborate with a designer to get the site you desire.
Paul Meñez was a freelance interior designer turned graphic artist and audio-video editor. He went into full-time NGO work for more than ten years and found his passion for outreach work, specifically for underprivileged children and youth.
He has travelled around the Philippines and Asia on different outreach efforts, even with his wife and three kids. He is currently based in the Philippines, doing freelance graphic design and video editing while writing for Softvire. He is also preparing to jumpstart his organic farm on his hometown island soon.