Basic Elements Every Small Business Website Needs
There are plenty of horrendous sites on the web, we are not just talking about bad design. There are plenty of other things besides design that will help you to make your site’s customers friendly. Not to mention something that inspires them to actually do business with you.
Here are some of the basic things that all small business websites need to make their website Customer-friendly and effectively help the business.
Clear Description Who you are:
As soon as People visit your website they should be clear about your service or product or what exactly you do. John Zhuang, of Web-design and SEO-optimization firm Winning Interactive, says “Tell people this is the right website that they have been searching for,” he says. “[A clear description] will attract the visitor’s attention immediately within 2-3 seconds, and encourage them to stay on your website longer.”
A Simple Web Address:
Don’t make your web address too complicated to remember. Make it as simple as it gets.
“Your domain name is like your brand. It should be easy for a user to type it into a Web browser or an e-mail address,” says Ron Wright, the founder of business Web design and online marketing firm Accentix.
He adds: “I always recommend the .com domain as users are conditioned to type that extension when they enter a web address. For non-profits or organizations, I usually recommend using a .org domain for branding purposes, but also recommend having a .com version of the domain in case a user accidentally types the .com address.”
Wright also suggests avoiding dashes (which can cause SEO headaches) and numbers (which can cause confusion for customers).
An easy Simple Navigated Map:
A sites map and clear links to the important page’s are crucial for guiding visitors to the information they are looking for. Wright Suggested “Be sure your navigation is clearly laid out. I always recommend using dropdowns in the navigation menu so the visitor can see the content under every heading from virtually any page. You want to make it very easy for your visitors to find what they are looking for, or what you want them to know”.
Easy To find Contact information:
Don’t make your contact information very difficult to find by the visitors. You wouldn’t want to lose a customer to a competitor just because you made it difficult for them to get in touch with you.
“Not every online visitor has the patience to click through every page on your website to find the contact information,” says Zhuang.
“The best place for the contact information is the top left or top right corner of the home page,” he recommends. “It is also a good practice to include contact information on every page of the website in the footer or sidebar or even in the top right corner, which helps the visitors to find it more easily.”
You should also be sure to include several ways for them to contact you — phone, e-mail, and a standard contact form are all good options. Forbes also suggests including your address and even a link to your location in Google maps.
“One of the biggest mistakes business owners make is to force only one way to reach them,” says Wright. “The point is to make it very easy for users to communicate with you on their terms.”
People do love to hear what people say about your Products or Services. Honest words from others help make your products or services more tangible to customers who are visiting you online.
“They help your potential customers to build trust in you, especially if you are new,” Zhuang says. “And they help shoppers to confirm whether the product or services meets their needs.”
“People love to hear stories from real people,” he adds. “They help people find out other things you haven’t said on your website.”
Basic of SEO:
SEO is one of the important elements for your website. SEO helps your website to be more accessible by search engines like Google.
“You don’t need to employ mysterious, ninja, black hat SEO types to rank well on the search engines. Simply make sure your website is coded correctly,” Wright says. That means using the correct keywords in Content, Putting plenty of links, naming your page titles and URLs correctly, and employing the magic of images and videos.
Wright says, “The user is looking for something. Make sure you give it to them and be sure your content is original, well written and valuable.”
“It is imperative that you have a secure, trustworthy hosting company to keep the bad guys out and your content up and running,” says Wright. “It is also very important to keep your content management system updated in order to stay one step ahead of the hackers.”
Design and Style:
Zhuang describes it in more detail: “Online visitors often scan through a Web page to sample the content first when they open a new Web page. If they feel like they are on the right page, they will slow down to read the full story. To enhance user’s experience on your small business website, you need to organize the content for scanning.”
He recommends three style points for online writing to keep in mind:
Break things down into short paragraphs, with headers if necessary
Use bullet points
Highlight important words or phrases.
Wright adds, “In the end, simplicity and basic colours are the best bet. Again, the content is the focus, not dancing clowns at the top of the page.”