Is your website modern and relatable to today’s visitors– or is it out-of-date and out of touch with today’s visitors? If it’s been a while since you updated your site, there’s a good chance that it needs some updating.Here are 6 simple things that are essential to your website effectiveness and relevance.
As a website owner you want to make sure your website visitors are happy. Happy visitors stay on your website longer, come back for repeat visits, and of course buy from your website. When it comes to a website’s structure, there are two elements that can make or break your user experience.
1. Quick load times
There is nothing that squashes a visitor’s happiness faster than not being able to load a website page. If the page doesn’t come up quickly, your visitor is gone. We’ve grown accustomed to instant gratification online, so if your web page takes longer than a few seconds to load, you may miss out on valuable prospects and visitors.
So what can you do to ensure quick load times?
- Reduce and minimize your graphics. Make sure a graphic takes up no more than 10k on any given page.
- Don’t use flash. Many website designers still turn to flash to add interest, but it takes too long to load. If you do use it, make sure you give your visitors the opportunity to click through and skip the show.
- Use plug-ins sparingly. There are a number of really useful plug-ins, however, they’re bulky and can slow down your load time. Also, they can distract from your web page’s purpose and make it look cluttered. If you’re going to use a plug-in, make sure it supports your goals for that page and enhances the visitor experience.
2. Easy navigation
Another factor that makes happy website visitors is that they can easily navigate. Straightforward and intuitive website navigation can be difficult to accomplish, but the following tips can help you get the job done.
- Eliminate clutter – Many times a web page has so much going on that the visitor isn’t sure what the purpose of the page is. Are they supposed to look at ads? Fill out a form? Read an article? Make sure your web pages have a PURPOSE. Then, make sure that page is designed to support that purpose with its formatting and add-ons.
- Intuitive buttons – The buttons on your page are there to guide your reader deeper into your website. Therefore, they must make sense to the visitor. One of the best ways to ensure your buttons are easy to understand is to make them keywords. Keywords are likely what drew your visitor to your website in the first place. They’re what the person is using to search for and find information. Create categories and subcategories with your keywords that allow users to easily find the information they’re looking for.
When your visitors are able to navigate your website with ease, they’ll stay longer. If they’re able to find the information they’re looking for without struggle and frustration, they’ll return again and again.
When you combine a straightforward layout with quick loading times, you’re well on your way to giving visitors a very pleasant experience. We all know that happy visitors turn into happy customers, so take a look at your website today and ask yourself, “Does it make my visitors happy?”
This is a question I get asked all the time – isn’t WordPress all the same? And the answer is no, definitely not. So what’s the difference you ask? Take a look at this video so you can see what the difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org is.
Your business website is often the first impression that your audience will have about your business. It’s their first peek into what you have to offer, so it’s important to include specific information that everyone will be looking for on your website.
A business website is there to give information about your business to your audience in very specific detail. You want to ensure that it’s laser-directed to your audience in such a way as to make the audience feel understood and safe at the same time.
Essentials to include on your business website:
Unique Content – Content consists of all information you put on your website, from blog posts to the home page. Images, forms, contextual information, the words on a submit button, and lots more are all content, which means that each one offers a unique opportunity to appeal to your ideal client. The more you can direct everything toward that ideal client, the better results you will have.
Overview of Benefits – A list of benefits of your offerings someplace or in many places on your website is a great thing to include. Your audience should leave your site fully understanding the benefits of your offerings, without question.
Contact Information – Some people seem to want to hide their contact information. That’s the opposite of what you really want to do. Instead, make it easy. Use your CONTACT ME page to offer multiple ways that your audience can contact you, including a phone number, email form, social media pages, and more. Don’t hide; be open about who you are and what you can offer.
Simple Navigation – Nothing is worse than not being able to figure out how to get around a website. If you want your audience to not only stick to your website but also to use it to its full potential, make the navigation easy to understand and intuitive to your audience. Today attention spans are getting shorter and shorter. If someone has too spend too much time trying to get around your website, they will likely click off of it and you will have missed your opportunity.
Comments Section – Make it easy for your audience to comment as well as read comments from others. You want your audience to be engaged so that they feel a connection to your site. This is a powerful use of website space, especially because user-generated content is loved by search engines.
Clear CTAs (Calls to Action) – Don’t be shy when it comes to calls to action. Your audience has no idea what to do unless you tell them. Make your CTAs super clear. Try to limit them to one or two per page of your website so that they don’t get confused about what to do.
Special Offers – A great way to draw people in to reading more information on your website is to include some sort of special offer to new visitors. You can use plugins to make time-sensitive offers to your regulars, as well as to make special offers to new visitors. This is a great way to increase customer loyalty.
Email Newsletter Subscription – Don’t let your visitors leave without offering them the ability to get updated about your offerings in the form of a newsletter or email. Make sure you give your audience a reason to share their email address with you. Pop-unders and sliders are very common today, because they work. Consider adding them to your business website for maximum impact.
Adding these elements to your website will allow it to be a key element in your marketing and sales strategy. It is essential to create your content with your audience and ideal client in mind and is focused in terms of how your audience thinks and feels rather than how you think and feel. When you do, you will start to realize the full potential and benefits of a great business website.
There are many reasons you should adopt WordPress as your content management system, at the top of that list of reasons would be having access to thousands of plugins that can be cost-effective solutions for your business. Plugins can enhance your site’s functionality and enhance your visitors experience on it. Hopefully this infographic can quickly help you identify the best solutions for your site and shortcut your time invested in finding a solution.