Look, there are few things I love more than beautifully designed websites… but if your website isn’t converting leads to clients, you might as well trash it. And I *definitely* don’t recommend that!
A website is your online home; it’s a place your business can live even if Instagram disappears.. and while you’re using Instagram to build your community, your website can compliment your efforts and work for you by providing your audience with more context around your services.
Through my 7+ years in the marketing/advertising field, I’ve touched websites big and small. From nationally recognized e-commerce sites to your favorite bar down the street, all of the sites I’ve built have hit the mark on each of the following2 ten items. I’ve included a checklist for you to save at the end of the post so you can be sure you’re marking your way through on your own website build!
A website, even a barebones one, is a necessity for businesses today! So let’s make sure yours works.
1. Consider usage goals
This is how the site will actually be used by the user. Usage goals are metrics you’ll need to track to determine the success of a website. They include consideration around how the website will be used and what you want the user to accomplish.
2. Write short, compelling copy
Don’t make your audience work too hard to learn about you. Copy should be brief and encourage action. Share what you do, why you do it, and how your audience benefits.
3. Make sure your images are high-resolution
Pixelated, blurry images are the first sign of a DIY website experience. Make those images crisp and bright! When saving out, 1920px for a full width image is a good rule of thumb. Compress larger images for web using imagecompressor.com.
4. Be sure you’re mobile responsive
This means you should have an easy to use mobile version of your site. 51% of web usage comes from mobile devices. You need to customize your mobile experience to make it super friendly with legible font sizes, no hover effects, and thumb-sized buttons.
5. Utilize SEO optimization
Help Google find your corner of the internet through keyword rich page titles, site copy, image descriptions, and clean links to and through your site. Get those keywords all over your site.
6. Use legible font sizes
Don’t make your audience squint! 16px is best practice, don’t push it much smaller than that. You might even consider making your mobile fonts even larger…
7. Have clear CTAs
Cheeky call-to-action statements are cute and speak to your brand tone… but if they are too hard to understand, the user won’t click them. Clearly tell the user what you want them to do.
8. Have you thought about ADA compliant colors?
Make sure your site is friendly for those with disabilities. You can check your color contrast at webaim.org and adjust if you need to.
9. Consider a simplified navigation
Let me repeat: do not make your audience work too hard. Condense the links in your top-navigation (aka menu) to only the most necessary pages. You don’t have to put every page in your nav.
10. It all boils down to a clear user experience
Your site is for your user, consider them, not just what you like. A beautiful website means nothing if its unusable. High-converting websites are those built for the user and consider their path + how they will interact with the site.
Did you learn something new today? Leave a comment below!