That idea you had for a business late one night and all those months ago proved, against all the odds, to be a good one after all. Now, you have a solid customer base, and your product or service is popular and profitable, but you know, deep down, that your website is letting the side down.
Let’s have a look at the essential elements and ideas that you should consider employing to spruce up your website.
Fifty Shades of Colour
Fifty shades of colour are obviously far too many. Think about the message you want to convey to your site visitors; these might be returning customers or new ones. What sort of shade would work as a background and fit your company ethos? What are the other colours that would fit with your choice of background to make it easy on the eye? Unless you are operating a kiddies’ cartoon site or a fashion page aimed at young ladies who are never seen in anything but shocking pink, avoid anything too jarring. You want people to explore your website and perhaps buy something or subscribe, so be careful not to drive them away by giving them a headache.
Images, photographic content, and graphics should also be consistent with the theme you want to communicate. When it comes to adding other things to your site, such as headlines, text, and search boxes, high contrast is the way to go to prevent clashes and make things easy to read, understand, and complete. You want your potential customers to have a hassle-free time as they enter their email addresses and credit card numbers, don’t you?
It is important not to get carried away with colours and images; use white space to draw attention to the parts of the website you want to attract the attention of the reader. Remember, there is nothing like simple black and white to suggest an air of simple elegance.
After piquing visitor interest with your black and white theme and they move further into your site, you can introduce colour – but be smart about it. Utilise white space again to highlight the colours and think about which colours are happy partners and which are squabbling divorcees.
Keep it Simple
People are busy. Forever scrolling down their screens or flicking to the right or the left. Complicated website content might be fun to put together, but pages which are hard to navigate are likely to drive away potential clients who want a simple and speedy experience.
Let people choose what they want to do, while limiting the options as much as you can; three choices will always be better than ten.
It is vital you tell your site visitors who you are, what you do, and what they can do now that they’re here. If they can’t find out this information quickly, then they aren’t likely to spend much of their valuable time trying to figure it out.
Don’t crowd individual product pages at their entry point with too much extraneous detail or descriptions of other products. By limiting these pages to a single product, some photos, and its specification, you’ll make it stand out. However, as the visitor scrolls down, they might find recommendations for other products or services that are useful.
By keeping a lid on animations, pop-ups, videos, and ‘moving’ content, you will make it easier for people to find their way around the site. Making sure it all fits onto a mobile device is also crucial nowadays.
As for the homepage itself, it has to be compelling. Cast a critical eye over your website’s homepage and ask yourself, honestly, whether you would bother to choose your site over those of your competitors. Canvass honest opinions from friends and family too.
Finally, remember the hard and fast rule, to which there are no exceptions: cut out the corporate jargon.
Calls to Action
Once you have hooked a potential customer and have got them looking at your home page, your aim is to get them to explore your site further. Calls to action such as ‘Special Offer’ or ‘Take a Free Trial’ can keep them wriggling on the line and swimming deeper into your carefully crafted content. You can generate sales and leads with CTAs like ‘Buy Now’ or ‘Visit the Online Store.’
By joined-up thinking, we mean that by making sure that nothing is out of place, your website achieves a cohesiveness whereby the whole is more than the sum of its parts. This includes the use of colours, graphics, images, video, search boxes, sidebars, and text. Think carefully about text size and colour and the font you use because mixed fonts can look messy.
Don’t get so mired in details that you take your eye off the big picture; building a website with the ‘Wow’ factor.
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