A website can often be the first point of contact between your company and the consumer. Ensuring a first impression is positive can be the difference between losing a sale and creating a customer.
Though organizations vary widely by industry in purpose and product or service, there are some universal must-haves that any business should be sure to include in their digital marketing plan. Here are five simple ways to increase the usability, functionality, and ROI (Return On Investment) of your website.
1. Clean Layout with Clear Navigation
It is imperative your website be easy for consumers to use. A consumer having a hard time finding their way through your website will have no problem locating the back button to navigate to another site. As a general rule keep the number of “clicks” for a user to get to a page down to a minimum of two.
A clean website follows your company branding and sticks with just a few main colors that are not harsh for the user to look at. All text should be written in a clean sans-serif font which is an easy to read typeface. Images should be placed at an appropriate size, not too small to make out but not so huge that your page takes considerable time to load. In addition, images should be used only to add to understanding and create a pleasing visual effect. There should also be minimal animated or moving images that could be distracting to the user. Similarly, automatically playing music or videos should be avoided.
Having a webpage that is easy to look at is just the first step; it must also be easy to use too. Clear navigation starts with the breakup of information onto separate pages. Think about what topics go together and which ones you most want visitors to know about. After your information is organized, you will need clearly titled sections to create your menu. Make sure your visitors know where to go to find what they are looking for and ensure that each title’s information can actually be found there.
2. Necessary Information
There is some information that all organizations regardless of industry should include on their website. It’s best to have contact information on both a contact page as well as at the bottom of each web page. The last thing you want to do is make it tough for interested viewer to reach out to you! Every business should also have information about what it is they are offering and how it can be attained.
3. Social Media Integration
Including links to your social media pages gives viewers a chance to learn a little more about your culture and how other consumers interact with you. It also gives them a chance to connect with you and receive constant updates. Visiting your website is their choice, but once you are connected on social media it is your choice of what you want them to know and when. Adding these little buttons is easy to do and can increase your SEO (Search Engine Optimization) giving you another channel of communication.
A secure website not only makes a visitor feel comfortable in your digital home but creates a very professional feel for your company. However, security is not all just about perceptions. It is absolutely essential if you plan to be using any information important to your viewers. Are you asking them to submit their email address? What about a username and password? This could be useful information to spammers and hackers, and your consumers likely know this. What about ecommerce? Are you asking consumers to make a purchase on your website? Without security, you can be assured consumers will find somewhere else to do their business.
5. Mobile Responsive
40% of mobile users will select another mobile result if the first site they visit is not mobile friendly. Given that mobile traffic is increasing by 3.5% each month, it is important to be prepared for a mobile visitor on your website. A mobile responsive site adjusts itself to the screen width it is opened on. This means the website scales down to a manageable view and your visitors still get a clean layout that they can navigate.
Having these key points in place can help a consumer learn about your business and make purchase decisions. Once your website is easily usable and contains all necessary information on all platforms, the effectiveness will increase allowing your ROI to improve.
If you would like to learn more about how to enhance your marketing opportunities through your website please contact Day Three Media.