We know marketing takes up a large component of many people’s budget, split among print marketing and collateral, trade shows, general advertisements, campaigns, web design, and more. But if you think all you need in terms of a website and its design is a one-time expense, you might want to rethink your strategy. Having a well-designed website goes a long way in building your business and your web presence. Here’s why you should look at your website as a long-term investment, versus a short-term priority.
Why It’s Important
No matter what size your business is, most will expect some form of web presence. Having a well-designed website speaks a lot about your company, and gives people a certain impression about your work. In sum, your website:
- Acts as a storefront: A website really lends itself as a first impression for many. If your store or offices were chaotic, would customers walk-in, or clients feel comfortable? You can apply the same to website design: if it looks outdated, empty, or too chaotic, people might instead turn to a competitor’s site.
- Extends your accessibility: If you want your business to grow, having a strong and updated website design will help you become more successful and reach audiences around the world.
- Creates the foundation of your web presence: Your website serves as the center of your company online. Having a professionally built site for your social media outlets to link-back to adds credibility to your work and your company. Without it, some web users might feel your content or business is untrustworthy, which can cost you sales over time.
Key Website Design Tips
Maybe you know how important it is to have a great design, yet don’t know where to start or what to change. Here are two key aspects to consider when redesigning or creating a website:
Keep it Simple and Responsive
A simple structure for your website design will go a long way in ensuring the best performance. Having a clear layout is more appealing to new visitors, since it will be easier to navigate and find the right resources on your site. Consider implementing these elements on your website:
- Prominent top navigation for important pages (Contact, Shopping Page, Blog/Announcements).
- A featured graphic to add personality without overwhelming the site design.
- A grid for photos, especially if you want to present a portfolio of work in a concise, clear way.
- A simple color palette, to keep things visibly appealing yet clean.
- Social media links in a neat bar or section to help clients locate and follow you outside your main webpage.
- Responsive design elements; this allows for your site to be viewed on multiple devices.
Simplicity keeps a cleaner back-end to your entire site’s structure. That simplicity goes a long way to making your website load faster and respond to clicks or submissions.
Make Sure to Update Regularly
Unlike a billboard that’s designed to be up for a long period of time without updates, a website needs constant maintenance. As the Internet becomes the go-to place for information on businesses, you’ll want to stay updated and connected.
Many people rely on websites to have updated information. For example, if you are a local restaurant, people will look up your website to find out what your holiday hours are, or if you take reservations on the weekends. An outdated webpage that lists your old hours, a broken link to a reservation page, or a disconnected phone number, creates more hassle for the customer, and leads to less sales for you. Even if you announce these changes on your social media pages–Facebook, Twitter, or more–many people might not get those announcements, and they don’t want to spend time searching feeds.
By keeping your website updated, visitors and clients know they can rely on your business. Having regular updates and announcements also encourages people to follow you, leading to better results. Remembering to make those changes to your website is important, and saves you time in the long run.