Wearing Your Website
In the business world, even in this era of casual chic, when you present yourself in front of others, you always insure that you look your best. If you were going to a job interview, and your website was your attire, would you be proud to wear your website?
Not face to face with an interviewer? Your website still performs one of the first steps in the decision making process of making the cut, so that you become one of the finalist. You should shine here. You own the discussion about
yourself in your unique digital space. No one can cut you off, change your direction, or take you down another road. Pure and simple the discussion is yours, and you can win or lose right here.
So it makes no sense to not have the windows washed, and the floor polished at all times. It is remarkable that owners do not dust the shelves or clean the carpets for months at a time. Have you checked to make sure that every single link on your site is not broken? Does an outbound link connect the user with a video, photo, YouTube or Vimeo image or video that is not there anymore?
Don’t make visitors “hunt down” information on your site. It should be easy for a visitor to get to your information within a couple of clicks. If not, they’re gone. Period. End of the ride. Keep your brand strong by making sure your website works as intended. Here are some items to consider when you now, re-look at your website.
1. Place your logo on every page in your website.
By this I mean not just in the header, but directly on the pages of your site. The goal here is to make “branding” a visual verb, not a noun. Instant recognition of your product/ services will not happen overnight. And this is part of a strategy making sure your logo gets in front of the recognition curve. This will take some time, but your website is a good place to start.
2. Make sure your phone number can be seen on every page, and is “clickable” for mobile users.
This is especially important if you sell a product. You want to capture every opportunity for that “impulse sale”.
3. Have two sections under your “About” heading.
I did a survey on Google Analytics of several of my clients to see which pages were the most visited on their sites. The About page was far and away the winner. But get this. The page about them was the most popular; the one about the Business was further down the list. People want to know a little about you personally, before they engage with the business.
4. Hire a professional web designer to do the work.
I know, self aggrandizing, right? I have seen numerous small business startups, and especially not for profit startups say they have family, friend, whomever who can manage the site. The problem is that you cannot FIRE those folks when things go south. You don’t have a professional relationship with them, so in the end, things don’t get done. Look at a prospective developer’s portfolio of work, which should be represented on her/ his website. Make sure that their design sensibilities are in line with yours.
5. Is there consistency of design across any potential web developers work.
This includes looking not only at their website, but at their social media accounts and printed materials. This will give you an idea of how well they can implement some of the common design skills and concepts.
6. Make sure that you are the owner of your domain.
This will help insure that when something is amiss with the domain name or services, that you will get informed. Many people have the web developer and or the designer do this for them. Usually this means that the developer/ designer will get the notifications of when the bill is due, and may forget to inform you timely before the service is cut off. It also lessens the chances of someone looking up the actual owner of the domain and not seeing your name.
So, this is just a sample of the articles and accoutrements that are necessary to make sure that your website is dressed for success. So don’t mix plaids with stripes. Make sure that you can wear your website to your next interview with style!