Whether you’re running a small consultancy selling premium services to a handful of high-end clients, or you sell baked goods to friends and neighbors in the community, having an effective website can make a big difference in your brand awareness, customer engagement, trust, authority, and sales. The only question is, what does it take to develop a website that accomplishes all of these things?
4 Tips for a Killer Website
Not all websites are created equal. Thousands of websites are launched into cyberspace every single day, yet only a fraction of them ever gain more than a few dozen unique visitors. Even fewer sites are able to convert visitors into paying customers.
How can you ensure your website finds its way into this exclusive club? By paying attention to details like these:
- Less is More
Modern web design is sleek and simple. The worst thing you can do is crowd too many elements into your design and give off a cramped, disheveled look. You’ll drive what few visitors you have away from your site — never to return!
The best websites embrace whitespace (also referred to as negative space). In other words, they’re okay with giving the design and copy space to breathe — leaving blank areas between graphics, columns, text, images, margins, and other elements.
Want to see what it looks like to do more with less? Study examples like Google and Apple. They’ve perfected the use of whitespace as a key web design element. Apply some of these lessons to your own site and you’ll have a cleaner and more sophisticated look.
- Graphics Are Everything
As the old saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words. And in web design, a compelling graphic might as well be the equivalent of 2,000 words of copy. If you can use a graphic — meaning an original photograph, immersive chart, or even a video — to replace copy, you should. It’ll give you a cleaner look and better conversion rates.
The problem is that the average person doesn’t understand all of the design principles that go into selecting graphics and creating high-converting web design layouts. So rather than attempt this feat on your own by relying on a generic, inflexible drag-and-drop builder, hire someone who knows what they’re doing. Better yet, support a Long Island web design agency like Active Web Group, which specializes in performance-focused website design. You’ll get much better results.
- Get Straight to the Point
There’s no time to beat around the bush with your website. You have a matter of seconds to elicit a positive first impression and convince the visitor they’re in the right place. Any degree of confusion or friction and you risk a high bounce rate.
The key is to get straight to the point with your copy. This looks like cutting out the filler and focusing on the meat of what you’re saying.
Consider two copy options for the top of a website banner:
Option 1: We sell BPA-free water bottles that are made from sustainably sourced materials and have less of an impact on the environment. Our water bottles are also more durable, longer-lasting, and sleeker looking than all of our competitors combined.
Option 2: Our water bottles do no harm.
Both of these options essentially say the same thing. However, the second one says it in a fraction of the words and leaves the visitor with a much clearer idea of what the business provides. That’s what website copy — and homepage copy in particular — should do.
- Grab Every Visitor’s Email
It takes a lot to convince someone to visit your website. You have to attract them in some way — via direct search, Google, social media, paid advertising, etc. — and the chances that they’ll return are slim. That’s why it’s so important that you collect their email address before they bolt. A high-converting one- or two-field opt-in form at the top of your homepage will work wonders. (Include an offer for a free lead magnet to convince people to give you their information.)
Set Your Small Biz Up for Success
Your website is going to look different from the small business down the street, however the principles of what make an effective website remain true across the board. Compelling design combined with crisp copy and a frictionless user experience will give you the results you’re looking for. And now that you know what to do, it’s time to execute!