A website is vital to the success of any business, from a photographer looking for more photoshoot orders, a flower shop finding more romantic customers to a large enterprise seeking more business contracts.
Nowadays, customers tend to start any purchase process by turning on the Internet and searching for everything relating to what. Having a professional business website with smart design and user-friendly experience, which enabling your potential customers to find you through the Google search engine and fully learn about your business, you already completed a halfway to convince customers to choose your product.
So the question now is how to build a successful website. Although building a website may cause a lot of confusion with a complicated process, there are still some core steps to follow to ensure that your website is built based on the right track.
1. Define the goals of your business website
The goals of your website will decide on how the web structure will be, how the design should look like, what function should be included, etc. The more clearer your goals are, the more successful your web will be. There are some basic goals many usually consider before starting to build a web:
- Sell products or services
- Get newsletter subscribers
- Attract visitors to your website and convert them to be your clients
- All of the above
One of the most effective models to find out good goals for your website is SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely. As clear as its name, this model will help to keep your website project on stable progress and ensure its success. Besides, don’t forget that a business website will be involving all departments of your companies from Marketing, Sales, HR to Customer Support. Remember to align with the goals of all departments to ensure that the website will be able to fulfill all their needs.
2. Plan To Build Your Website
After defining the goals, planning is the next key activity you need to do to have a successful website. You can start by writing down a list of pages you think your website will need and what will be on them. During this process, you may discover some pages that can be combined or others that need to be split apart. Then, organize the pages in a way that ensures visitors can navigate easily. Based on the page list and page organization, you already can build a wireframe planning the features of each page.
There are many levels of how much detail a wireframe can be. Ideally, your wireframe should be able to visualize your website’s structure, draw a representation of how the pages will be linked to one another, and even visual concepts. Place yourself on visitors’ shoes to understand how they can find your website, how many clicks they are willing to make to find the information they need. Commonly, it should take three or fewer clicks for a visitor to find what they’re looking for on your website.
Besides, an effective plan also should feature a clear timeline and budget. List out all the tasks and organize them in a chronic order after aligning those tasks with all team members to ensure all the deadlines will be met. The budget will decide how much you want to invest in designing, programming, or hosting services. Budget planning may require careful research about the market price and expert advice to ensure you can have a website that bangs for the buck.
3. Create a winning UX
Accordingly, your website gets only 2-3 seconds to impress visitors and make them want to learn more about you or not. In these few seconds you need to grab attention, convey your message, and make them want to stay and check your website in detail. User experience – UX is the factor that will help you to achieve that. So, creating an impressive and engaging UX is vital for any successful website. The core elements form a great UX are below:
- The loading speed of your webpages: Research proves that people abandon pages that take time to load and on an average online buyer expects a web page to load in 2 seconds or less.
- The first impression is the last impression: Make your website visually attractive using color combinations, images, and design that syncs with your overall website.
- Ensure that you have a crisp headline: A short crisp and informative headline is a must to make your audience realize that they are on the right page. Research proves that 79% of the people just skim through the page while only 16% read in detail.
- Clean and intuitive navigation: One of the first things that your visitors expect the moment they land on your web page is to have easy and clear navigation options. Your top navigation bar must have all the important links that might be of interest to your visitors like other related services, contact us options, logo link to home, etc.
- Don’t forget to optimize your web on mobile screens: Research has proven that Mobile Searches have gone up by as high as 500% in the last 2 years and it is expected to grow even further. So mobile devices and tablets are one such area that you can’t afford to ignore.
4. Content is king
Remember to take content as the center of your website plan. Visitors always start their research with a need and a list of questions in their mind. As long as your content can answer those questions, your website succeeds to deliver your brand and service to potential customers. Thus, the content plan should figure out how the content of your website answers visitors’ questions.
A website with insightful, informative content will blow a site with “content for content’s sake” out of the water. When you sit down to write your content, never think of it as an exercise in filling up a page. Instead, ask yourself what kind of value you can add right now;
- Product comparisons
- And anything else that can serve to teach your visitors and therefore all adds value.
However, try to keep your content scannable as visitors only spend a very few seconds to learn your page, even your blog post. I will be very happy if you can see and read this sentence 🙂
5. Prepare an practical knowledge of SEO
Search engine optimization (SEO) is a low cost and stable method to effectively attract web traffic and even potential customers in the long term. Thus, it’s essential to equip yourself knowledge of SEO which requires a set of skills that run from the technical to the almost artistic. On the technical side, there are elements to consider like link structure, 301 redirects, meta tags, and XML sitemaps. On the artistic side, you have valuable content, which we just covered.
Valuable content is the key to your winning SEO strategy through presenting visitors with authoritative information they’ll want to share with others, resulting in them linking to your site, which signals Google that a page is popular and should be higher in search results. Of course, there are many more technical tasks you’ll need to do to ensure your website doesn’t get lost several pages behind in searches. The good news is that you don’t always need a deep technical understanding of SEO to set it up properly. It comes down to your ability to follow instructions: your URLs, page titles, and meta tags need to follow a certain standard, for example.
Arestós is an all-in-one website partner that includes everything you need to create a comprehensive site for your business, including an eCommerce site for selling online. It’s the easiest solution by far for businesses of any size who want to build a website that follows the criteria outlined in this blog.
Of course, these five key steps to building a business website that is just too much for a single blog post, feel free to contact us for free consultancy on how to plan, build, and launch your website from beginning to end.