Whether you’re getting a website for your business for the first time ever or you’ve decided your existing site needs an upgrade, you might be wondering just what elements you need to pay particular attention to. You can design it yourself or hire someone to do it for you, but either way, you’ll benefit from understanding some basic design principles and how to make sure you’re optimizing the website for your company.
Consider an SEO Consultant
SEO should be an integral part of your approach to designing your website or having someone design it for you. You can have a beautiful, user-friendly website with terrific content, but if people don’t know how to find you and you’re not coming up near the top of Google results, it won’t do you much good. It’s much easier to work on your SEO from the beginning to improve search engine visibility than to try to insert it after the fact, so you might want to consider hiring an SEO consultant. You can review a guide on what an SEO consultant can do for you to better understand this role.
If you’re doing the work yourself, you should learn some basics about clean design and usability. If you’re hiring someone to do it for you, they’ll appreciate that you’ve educated yourself somewhat so that the likelihood that they’ll be asked to implement an unattractive, unworkable design is lower. You might have a decent eye for what looks good, and in some cases, that might be sufficient. However, if you don’t understand why certain colors clash, why more isn’t necessarily better, why white space is good and why a jumble of fonts is a bad idea, you may want to review an article or a book on design principles.
A great user experience should always be at the core of a well-designed site for your business. This could mean letting go of something that you think looks really cool to make the site easier to use. After all, if your customers or potential customers can’t navigate the way they need to, even a beautiful site will be useless to you. Professional designers usually have a stage in their process where they check for usability. If you’re taking a DIY approach, recruit some friends, family members or employees to poke around the site, and get their feedback. Can they find the information they need? Did anything confuse them? Be sure to have them test on a variety of different devices as well, and make sure that your site is optimized for mobile usage.
Think about both how your content will be presented and what it will consist of. This ties back in part to SEO, but your content has to be about more than search optimization. You need to offer information that is of value to your visitors. In addition, think about a variety of different ways to present it. For example, many people prefer video, but there are people who are unwilling to sit through a video and will just click away if there is no transcript option.