Building a great website is not something that happens by accident.
The good news is that with the right kind of approach to planning, a great outcome can be achieved. Common questions we hear from our clients include:
“What do we need to consider and include in our web development plan?”
“Which components are critical to the performance of our business website?”
Building a great website is not something that happens by accident, but neither is it impossible. It simply requires the right kind of approach and a mindful attitude to some of the common problems that users face when they connect with businesses online.
Common issues that affect website performance
As part of our website development agency services, we encounter many issues that affect the performance of our clients’ websites. Here are just a few of the most common problems:
Excessive page elements
We all love to dazzle our users with multimedia elements and other attractive features, but this cannot come at the cost of page performance. Web designers should find the right balance between a highly functional page and swift loading times. Lazy loading and development frameworks that prioritise code bundle transmission can help here.
Your users need to be able to find the features that really speak to them. If you are not providing these features or if they are buried deep in your web architecture, this is a problem. Approach web design from your users’ point of view, and deliver exactly what they want to see.
Overuse of CSS
Cascading style sheets, or CSS, is a relatively user-friendly coding language that web designers and developers can use to make great websites. However, the apparent simplicity of the language can be problematic, and business owners may want to look elsewhere to achieve great functionality without compromising performance.
So, what are the components of a great business website?
We’ve looked at the common issues that impact web performance, but how do you craft a great website? Which components do you need to include in your website development plan? Read on to learn more.
Reliability has to be the number one component of a great business website. Why is this? Because your customers expect to be able to find you and use your features and functionality all the time — without exception. If you experience any downtime or other unexpected mishaps, your customers won’t respond well to this.
Of course, reliability is not just about being “always on”, although this is certainly a big part of running a website. Basically, reliability is all about being there for your customers when they need you. This means when they want to connect with your apps, they can; when they want to buy a product, they can; when they need support, they can find it.
In other words, you need a website that provides all of this to your customers on a round-the-clock basis. If your website cannot offer this, your customers will move to a business website that can.
While reliability is the number one component overall, marketing delivery is your number one when it comes to generating conversions specifically. What do we mean by this? We mean putting your website in front of the right eyes so that qualified leads are connecting with what you offer.
Your website is ready and waiting for anyone who can find it, but this doesn’t mean that everyone who needs to find it is able to. Social media marketing, SEO techniques, and other promotional activities make sure that a wider audience is able to connect with what you provide.
What’s more, this will help you to make sure that qualified leads are connecting with you. Deploying the right keywords and PPC ads will ensure that leads are reaching your pages through relevant search terms. Social media is also useful here — making your website available through the right social media channels and groups will increase your chances of attracting warm leads that are easier to convert.
How is your webpage structured? This is a critical aspect of success in the digital marketing field. If your website is untidy or is not structured and organised in a logical and intuitive fashion, it is simply not going to perform in the way you want it to. Your users may not be able to find the features and functionality they need and may end up heading elsewhere in search of this.
Even if your users can find what they’re looking for, you still must consider how you can improve website structure and support better navigation. Customer experience is an important part of your strategy, so make sure that a great experience is provided at every turn.
Think about your lead magnets with regard to this. Is there a lead capture form you want to direct your users to, or a product page or piece of content you want to highlight? This needs to be swiftly accessible from your website’s landing pages. Users should be able to access these areas of your website with just a few clicks, or even fewer. Think about your landing pages, too. You can’t assume that all of your users are accessing your website via your homepage. Analytics will tell you where and how users are arriving on your site, and you should build your architecture around this knowledge.
We’ve touched on keywords and phrases earlier on, and this is still key to your SEO endeavours. However, this should not be the limit of SEO, and in fact, the discipline has evolved and expanded greatly in recent years. As well as keywords, you need to make sure that your page’s bounce rate is low, that your pages are loading without delay, and that there are no structural errors — such as orphaned pages — within your site structure.
External links are also something to consider. Make sure you are linking to high-quality sources that boost the E.A.T. — expertise, authoritativeness, trustworthiness — credentials of your content. Linking to poor quality sources may have a detrimental effect on your SEO.
Everything about your site should be user-friendly and geared towards your audience. Reach out to this audience and find out more about what they want from you, and from your page, to help raise conversions. Don’t be tempted to create self-indulgent content that you want to see, but instead draw upon quantitative and qualitative data to craft pages that meet key audience needs.
Adopt a problem/solution stance. Identify specific user problems — preferably those that are not being solved by your competitors — and then position your business as the solution.
Quality is everything in your website development plan
In website development, quality must come first. A great website really is one of the greatest assets for your business, you will be able to reach an ever-expanding array of customers, nurture those customers you already have, and grow your revenue with increased conversion rates.
Get the guide
Are you missing out on potential new leads because your website has problems that you’re not aware of? Get our free easy-to-action website audit guide: Six key areas to ensure your website delivers success to your business.
Reach out to our team of web designers and other experts, and discover more about how you can make your website work for you and your business.