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8th Jan, 2013 We Love Design
It’s all about the web…and more importantly, a properly designed and easy to navigate website for your business.
These days every business should have a website, it goes without saying. But is your website working for you? does it convey your brand, accurately describe your services and reflect your business ethos?
Here are some classic mistakes that many business owners make and then regret once they realise that, in fact, their website is not generating the new business they expected.
Mistake Number 1: Getting Your Nephew To Do It!
Your nephew probably doesn't know a lot about marketing. A website is not just a website - it is one of your most powerful business marketing tools. Would you entrust that heavy responsibility to someone who knows how to put a website together, but knows nothing about marketing?
What you are actually doing is allowing your nephew to create the first impression of your business, and control the effect that your website will have on all those people who check you out online before they contact you?
Almost anyone can construct a static website these days, as modern software makes it very easy. But if you have a specific purpose in mind and want to actually achieve something, go to a professional. Unless you're a professional web designer and programmer, don't waste your time and money trying to create your site yourself. Maintain yes, but don't create.
Mistake Number 2: Design inconsistency
Your website should be consistent in design throughout all pages. Your website should flow seamlessly like a software programme, not like a composite of 20 different sites piled on top of one another.
Your font style and size should also be the same on every page for consistency and this should encapsulate your brand guidelines.
Mistake Number 3 - Ill-fitting Components
Beware of using “free webmaster tools” for your guest book, forum, or other site components. These tools will often steal your hits, rob your traffic, and lower your page rankings in search engines. This happens because your visitors must actually leave your site to sign into your externally hosted page - guest book, blog etc. So, when your pages are indexed by the search engines, they will not be listed with your domain but the provider of the external page you’ve inadvertently linked to. Not to mention the fact that they can be very unattractive!
A professional web design agency will be able to offer you a scalable, easy to use Content Management System, covering the components that you need for your site and offer new modules you may want to add in the future as your business grows.
Mistake Number 4 - Browser Compatibility
Don’t ignore browser compatibility. Not everyone uses the same web browser. Just because your site looks good on your computer does not mean it looks good on others. Download multiple versions of IE, Firefox, Chrome to check how your site displays and functions within them. Don’t forget users will have varying screen resolutions so make sure that you are not losing potential clients because your website looks strange in their browser.
Mistake Number 5 – Things you won’t even think about unless you’re an experienced web designer.
The list below are additional, important elements that are often ignored by someone who isn’t trained and experienced in website design/development:
- Poor overall appearance
- Bad spelling/Grammar
- No contact information/call to action
- Poor content
- Poor navigation
- Broken links and graphics
- Large slow loading graphics
- Busy, distracting backgrounds
- Large fonts/Inconsistent fonts
- Annoying Pop up messages
- Multi-coloured text
- No Meta data