Maybe your current website isn’t mobile responsive. Perhaps it’s stuck in the past, designed with outdated typefaces and images. Whatever the reason, you’re ready for a new site.
There are dozens of factors to consider, like what your site map should look like or how to incorporate the right design elements. Plus, your site needs to rank well in organic search results.
It can seem overwhelming. That’s why our digital team developed six key items for creating a new website. Check them out below!
1. Evaluate your website analytics.
Chances are Google Analytics was installed on your current website at some point. Digging into these statistics reveals how people have been interacting with your website for weeks, months and even years.
For example, you may notice there are more customers coming to your website from social media than you thought. Or perhaps you’ll discover surprising keywords that led to visitors finding your website in an organic search.
Google Analytics can also show what pages people have viewed the most, the last pages they view before clicking away, what devices they’re on, and much, much more.
All this information combines to create a detailed outline of what your website needs to resonate with visitors, as well as where you’ve been missing the mark. And just like that, you have a blueprint to move forward.
2. Start with WordPress.
More than 65 million websites and blogs have been created on WordPress. That’s no surprise, really. The appeal of WordPress lies in its easy-to-use templates with built-in blogs. That means users don’t need to know HTML to update their websites.
Additionally, WordPress also offers extensive customization options, as well as plugins that can improve the functionality of your website. This provides site owners with a lot of flexibility to make the template just right for their business.
Our web design and development team has been using WordPress for years because of its content management system. It offers endless design possibilities, which allows clients to easily make smaller changes on the website.
3. Remember, customization is your friend.
While every WordPress site starts with a template, customization is what gives life to that template. The best WordPress websites contain:
- Captivating, relevant imagery
- Incorporation of brand colors and the company logo
- Helpful modules and widgets
- Engaging copy that answers customers’ questions
All of these items combine to create a cohesive brand experience for visitors.
If you’re still not sold on the benefits of customization, consider that your company’s credibility is affected by design. Not unlike experiences in your store or over the phone, negative interactions with your website could turn a customer away for good.
For example, a search bar that doesn’t work, broken links or fonts that a customer can’t read will push customers away from your website — and your business – for good.
4. Keep mobile in mind.
WordPress templates are designed to work for mobile devices. But that doesn’t mean anything goes when it comes to the imagery and design of your website.
And because more than half of all website traffic comes from mobile, it’s important to make sure you’re not alienating a large segment of your audience.
Take a look at the fonts, navigation and imagery on your site. Is the site easy to interact with, regardless of which device you’re on? If not, the design needs some tweaking.
The goal is to create the best-possible experience for users. Doing so will engender goodwill, increase the time visitors spend on your page and ultimately assist your ranking in organic search results.
5. Avoid overcrowded designs.
A website brimming with tons of images and Flash animation is more likely to be irritating than helpful, especially since every element added to the site increases loading time.
You don’t have to embrace the trending minimalist website design to capture the heart of your customer. Simply focus on using fewer, well-crafted photos or videos.
You’ll hold a viewer’s attention longer and better. Art Director Sandra touches on a few other common design mistakes in the video below.
6. Don’t launch without implementing SEO.
Even the best-designed website falls short without a well-implemented search engine optimization strategy.
Before you launch your website, make sure you’ve covered the basics. Fill out title tags and meta descriptions, write easy-to-understand copy, tighten up your load time and address the latest developments from Bing, Safari and Google.
If you’re not sure how to stay on top of it all, it may be time to enlist the assistance of an SEO professional. This can help your website increase its rankings in organic search results so you’ll attract more visitors and gain more conversions.
Start & Finish Well
Ensuring your website delivers the results you want takes an investment of time and effort into research, development, design and SEO to create a site uniquely tailored to meet your customers’ needs. It can sound like an insurmountable task, but it doesn’t have to be.
We’ve walked through this process with countless clients, and we’d love to help you. Whether you have questions about what we covered here, you only need help with SEO or you think it’s time for a full website overhaul, our team is here to help. Contact us today.