All too often, many entrepreneurs fall into the trap of thinking a basic website is enough to embody and sustain a robust and online presence. However, it is quite the opposite. That presence must be cultivated and periodically reshaped to stay abreast of the times.
In today’s online world, optimization, functionality, and interactivity are all critical musts for creating interest and conversions. There are already too many existing websites that are not built to meet the needs of modern users. As a result, these websites do not perform well, and they do not see the traffic or conversion of other sites that are adapting and sticking with the times.
In this guide, you’ll find a few handy tips for designing a better website, as well as advice for catering more effectively to today’s online audience. Your site does not have to be another failed initiative among the rest; these are four things to bear in mind while you craft and fine-tune your website.
Design for Quick Loading Times
Today, more than ever before, people are on the go and need information as quickly as possible. Nothing will make a user mash the “back” button faster on your website than slow loading times and incomplete information.
The idea is to design with speed and simplicity in mind. As a rule of thumb, you should ensure your website loads in just a few seconds on all platforms (and yes, you should be considering slower connections). To get an idea of how quickly your website loads for new users, consider using tools such as Pingdoms Website Speed Test. Once your analysis is complete, you’ll get a quick rating on how well your website loads on both desktop and mobile platforms, as well as tips for improving this rating.
Likewise, it’s a good idea to keep in mind that a good chunk of your traffic will be visiting from mobile devices. Keep your design as mobile-friendly and responsive as possible, and ensure your website can easily be navigated by tapping rather than clicking.
Closely Track Your Performance
One of the most popular tips for designing a website has always been keeping up with your analytics, and this still rings true today. There’s no better way to get an idea for how users are interacting with your website than back-end statistical tools.
Simply put, using analytics is the most effective method for ensuring your website is performing the way it should. You should place strong consideration on gauging many metrics about your site including traffic information, user behavior, and conversions.
Mold Your Customer Service to Fit the Times
When you envision contacting a customer service portal for help or inquiries about a product/service, you likely picture calling a support hotline or engaging in live chat with an agent. These days, users are showing growing interest in an entirely new customer service method, and that is texting. In fact, research has shown that consumers prefer texting six times more than traditional live chat, so if you can integrate your customer service to a mobile format, you will find more responses coming your way.
If your planned approach to customer service thus far has been the traditional email form or live chat feature, you may want to reshape your strategy. Besides, wouldn’t you want to add texting as a possible customer communication tool if it meant an increased potential for conversions and customer retention?
Two excellent texting options to integrate into your website are:
Optimize Your Website for Conversions
The most fundamental goal of almost any business-oriented website is to create conversions. You probably know enough about web design to know what a “call to action” is, but did you know that they can be strategically placed all over your website in natural, non-invasive ways?
As a rule of thumb, you should look at every element or section of your website as a potential turning point for your visitor to become a customer. This is why it’s necessary for a CTA to be visible from practically any spot on your site. After all, you do not want to lose out on a potential conversion simply because a user has trouble locating your appointment or order page(s).
It’s generally good practice to audit the relevance and efficiency of your website at least once every six months. Moving with the times does not typically boil down to complete site overhauls, but instead adaptation and modification to better fit the current demands of users.
As 2018 presses on, we will see a continuing movement towards user-oriented, simple, and interactive design standards. It’s imperative that you stay in touch with this movement to improve your odds for online success and conversions.