Let’s have a look at how to create a great website and some of the aspects you should keep in mind when designing or re-ordering your website.
Businesses can be made or be reinvented by their website! Your website can take your business to high new levels of success, if you follow the right model for the website’s design and marketing. Once you have a successful design, you can harness the power of the Internet to market the website through Google Ads, Facebook Ads, other social media channels. No one marketing tactic is suited to all businesses. The 10 strategies below are some examples of how you can create a great website.
Creating a great website requires attention to detail, always remembering that it not just represents your business, but that your visitors will expect certain things from your organisation through your website.
1. Understand Your Brand and Create A Strategy For Your Website
A website can be as beautiful as you want it, but what if it does not fit with your business’s or brand’s image? A great website will always mirror the brand it is promoting. You must understand your brand and translate it into your website so a uniform message is dealt out to your audience.
What is the aim of your website? Are you looking at making online sales, selling a concept to your visitors, providing information, or simply promoting brand-awareness? It may even be a combination of one or more of these strategies. Creating a great website takes time in planning — and a vision.
2. Design Errors Can Cost You Success
An all singing and dancing website, designed to within an inch of its life may look great, but how is it received by your visitors? A successful website does not rely upon impacting colours or fonts. A great website will look good, but will give the intended impression of your brand or business.
Information will be freely available on a great website and visitors will be kept up-to-date with the latest information on a given topic. There is nothing worse than a website with stale or out-of-date information to send visitors for the back button. You need to find a balance between looks and content — both of which must still fit with your brand’s image.
3. Should A Great Website Offer Content For Free?
The topic of free or chargeable information and products is one which is not always easy to get right. Should you offer a product for free in the hope that visitors will choose to buy other paid-for products? Or should you value your products for the quality they are and expect website visitors to pay without a “taster”?
In our experience, a great website will offer a “taster” in the form of free downloads of anything from an eBook to some sort of useful information. The download will naturally include the upsell to the full-price and other premium products. However, once the website visitor has chosen to add their email address to your mailing list to get a copy of your free download, you are at least half-way to a sale.
The middle ground is a so-called Freemium product. Freemium products are often the full-blown product, but with certain features turned-off. In other words, you are granted access to the main product for free, but some vital features are not available unless the upgrade to the paid-for version is made! The Freemium model can be very successful in converting visitors to clients.
The model which will work for your business will need to be analysed carefully, but get it right and you will have created a great website.
4. Bring Visitors To Your Website
Generating website traffic takes long, hard work. Just because you love the look of your website and regularly browse it does not mean the rest of the world does! A traffic-generating website takes time and effort to achieve. You will need excellent content which grabs the attention of your visitors and you will need to keep this information both up-to-date and for new content to be regularly be added to your website.
A good start to generating website traffic is to carefully and naturally target keywords in your content. Optimise everything from your titles, headings, descriptions and links with a specific keyword phrase for each single web page. Keywords are what the search engines will pick up on and will slowly help your website rise in the rankings for each keyword — if done well. A great website will also see a steady stream of traffic arriving thanks to good keyword optimisation.
5. How Does A Great Website Keep Visitors on Its Pages?
How to keep visitors on your website is a question we are often asked. There are many different techniques to achieve visitor retention, but the best way to achieve this will depend upon your own business and what your visitors expect of your brand.
Your aim will be to encourage the visitor to click further into your website until they eventually either buy from your online store or contact you with a view to a quotation. But how do you achieve this?
Great content is the primary method of keeping visitors on your website. Good photographs, useful information, and terrific product offerings are just some of the ways you can keep visitors interested and active on your website. Another method is a great and regularly released set of blog posts on topics appropriate to your business. If successfully done, you will build up a strong resource of free information, which will drive visitors to click on links in the posts and so land on your premium products.
6. Spectacular SEO To Surmount The Competition
Search Engine Optimisation, or SEO, is the most important technique to get your website’s pages to the top of the search engine rankings. It is the “free” way of getting to the top of Google. “Free” in these terms means organic growth, as opposed to paid advertising.
Good SEO takes much time and effort to get right and is not an instant solution. Even Google states that it can take up to twelve months for SEO results to be reflected in their search results. In reality, you will generally see positive SEO results within one to four months — especially if your website was previously poorly search engine optimised. Unless you are an SEO ninja, it is always advisable to get SEO help from specialists.
7. How To Unobtrusively Generate Additional Revenue
In the bad old days of the Internet, you were (and still can be!) faced with incredibly annoying banner advertisements, which often flashed and bounced to try and attract your attention — generally bouncing you straight to the browser’s back button.
A far cleverer method that a great website earns passive income from is through affiliate marketing. In short, affiliate marketing means the website promotes a product which is inline with the business’s brand and ideals, but which is not directly produced by the business. Marketing affiliate products can bring your business significant passive income using affiliate links. Be careful though, as the method does not suit all business models and should only be used where it is appropriate to your visitors’ expectations.
8. Advertising On Your Website For a Passive Income
Offering advertising on your website is not for all business models. However, it is a method of earning a passive income. This sort of advertising may work well for a blog or influencer who can help drive traffic through carefully chosen advertisers. Influencers command attention from advertisers who know that the right influencer can bring new business from the advertisements they host on their website.
The influencer will specify strict terms for the style and type of advertising so that they fit with the website’s brand, look and feel. However, competition is high and, if this is your model, your website must be better than your competitors to get top price advertisers choosing your website. Advertising space is competitive. A great website will attract only top-notch advertisers.
9. Use Social Media To Drive Traffic
In this day and age, it is impossible to ignore the importance of social media in driving traffic to your website. In many cases, you will find visitors primarily see the brand or business through social media. This, of course, implies that the business has a good and successful social media exposure.
Every successful business should develop a solid social media strategy. Concentrate on two to three social media channels at most. Not every social media platform is suited to every business. It should be relatively easy to analyse which social media platform is best for your business. Find the correct social media channels and your should see your website’s traffic grow.
10. How To Determine Whether Your Website Is A Great Website?
How on earth do you know if your website is truly a great website? Well, you need to know who your visitors are and how they behave on your website. Thankfully, this is perfectly possible thanks to Google Analytics (GA). GA allows you to see exactly how your visitors interact with your website. It is not a simple tool to use and you will benefit from a specialist in managing GA for you. However, the information gained from GA can make the difference between a great website and a poorly performing one as it allows you to make changes to your website where necessary to improve click through rates to under-performing pages.
How do I create a great website? The short answer is that you need a to combine a number of different strategies to create a great website. There is no golden formula to suit all businesses, but by carefully choosing the strategies which fit your brand or business, you can achieve Internet success and have a great website which provides you an active and passive income. The 10 steps above are just a few of the strategies you can implement in your business to make your website earn its keep.
To discover more about how to create a great website, contact Cotswold Websites to get started!
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
With a background in international logistics and business analysis, Christopher uses his business experience to advise organisations how their website can and should work for them, along with helping them implement business strategies to use Digital Marketing techniques to boost their public exposure.