Websites need to be effective and engaging given it is often the first impression a customer will get of a business
(PRWEB UK) 16 November 2012
Having an online presence is obvious for most business owners as not having one can result in loosing valuable business to competitors. However a website needs to be effective and engaging given it is often the first impression a customer will get of a business.
When SMEs are designing their website, Add People recommend incorporating the following key points to ensure potential customers have a positive online experience
Keeping customers on a website should be the utmost important function for SMEs; to do this a website must interact and engage the customer. Business owners should remember the 5 second rule of web design - a visitor should be aware of the website message within 5 seconds. Websites that are distracting and busy will deflect from the overall appeal, simplicity is key. Having an aesthetically pleasing website can give SMEs the edge over their competitors.
User friendly navigation
A first-class website should have great design but it is equally important for it to be functional. Having a website that customers can navigate easily is fundamental to the success of a website. User friendly websites keep prospects on longer and reduce the chances of them visiting competitors. If a user is finding it difficult to navigate or spending a long time searching then they are more likely to leave. It is important to remember that a website with good structure will also have positive SEO benefits.
SMEs should provide high quality content to keep visitors returning to their website. Consumers search the internet for answers and solutions to problems, provide them and they are more likely to return. SMEs should include items on their website such as blogs, tutorials and infographics as this will retain the visitor’s interest and keep them browsing for a longer time. It is also important that content is unique and original to a website as if not, it will have negative SEO effects whilst also disappointing visitors.
Social media integration
There have been no signs of the rapid growth of social media decelerating so it is important SMEs integrate social media with their website, placing social media buttons on landing pages and share buttons on a blog being standard procedure. Business owners should utilize Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+ as exertions of their website and use these platforms to bring personality to their brand. It is important to note that customers are now more inclined to reach out to businesses on Facebook or Twitter than they are by phone or email.
Cross browser compatibility
SMEs need to make sure that their websites are compatible with all browsers whether visitors are using Chrome, IE or Firefox as they may lose out on sales or enquires if visitors can’t access the website properly.
By 2014, more internet users will browsing through a mobile or tablet, so having a mobile friendly website is increasingly critical and a solid business reason for re-development. With the availability of cheaper tablets and the recent launch of even faster browsing with mobile networks now offering 4G mobile broadband this growth is only set to continue unabated.
Don’t let SEO be an afterthought...
Search engine optimisation can often be an afterthought when designing a website but it is crucial that it is incorporated in the early stages. Websites need to be optimised properly from the start, from keyword selection to on-page optimisation, content and usability in order to give SMEs the best chance of getting strong page rankings within search engines after the website is launched.
Add People, the positive online marketing specialist have been building fully optimised mobile friendly websites for customers across the world and have recently been included in New Media Ages top 100 interactive agencies in the UK. For more information on their services, visit their website on http://www.addpeople.co.uk or follow them on twitter http://www.twitter.com/add_people