There is no arguing that a website is a must for your business.
But if your website is not engaging visitors, you’re wasting your efforts.
Creating and maintaining a site that is pleasing to your visitors will greatly enhance your business by appealing to your existing clients and attracting more business prospects, eventually enhancing your bottom line.
Follow these 3 steps and you should be well on your way to providing a website that is attractive and engaging for your visitors.
1. Keep your content concise, paying close attention to it’s readability.
Content is the biggest influence on visitors to your website. By providing content on a regular basis that is current and easy to read, you are not only making your site more user friendly, but you are also more likely to have your visitors return and share information.
Make sure that your content is easy to peruse. Most internet users scan content rather than reading all of it. Formatting your content by keeping the paragraphs short, using tables or columns will assist in the readability factor. Breaking up text through the use of bullet points, headings and sub-headings will also make it easier for your visitors to find the key points of your message.
Ensuring that your content is provided in a visually pleasing manner will also improve the visitors’ engagement. Watch for things like finding the right contrast between your site and the content. Don’t let the background color overpower the content.
Also pay close attention to white space. Too little, and you risk ‘tiring’ your visitor and they will simply leave your site without reading your message.
Improper font usage is another error that can cause subliminal fatigue in your visitors. Keep your fonts clean and easy to read, and note that san serif fonts are easier to read online, while serif fonts are more appropriate for printed materials. Avoid using more than 2 or 3 fonts per design, using highlighted or bold keywords or links instead.
While we are on the subject of links, be sure to test all your links to ensure that they are working. Broken links are not only confusing but are also unprofessional, making a negative impression and lowering the credibility of the content you worked so hard to provide. Review your links from time to time to make sure that they have not broken and continue to point to the appropriate pages.
2. Make navigating your site simple.
This simple step is one of the easiest and best things you can do to improve the appeal of your site. Creating navigation that is clear and clutter-free makes it easier for your visitors to find information and they are therefore more likely to dig deeper into your site. Limit the number of menu items as much as you can, while still ensuring that visitors can find salient information.
When looking to improve navigation, check your layout first. If the layout is cluttered or confusing, you will lose visitors. You can highlight specific pages to make them more visible, or include a call-to-action at the top of the site.
Also, the placement of the navigation menus are very important, so be strategic. The best place for the menu is either at the top or the left-hand side of your site. Regardless of which of these 2 choices you use, be sure that the navigation is above the fold – keeping in mind the use of mobile devices as well.
3. Be sure your site loads quickly.
The online experience has impacted our attention spans. More and more, visitors are looking to get information quickly, and are impatient with websites with long load times. Don’t risk losing potential business simply because your site takes too long to come up! Your site should ideally load within 4 – 6 seconds. Besides that, long load times also negatively impact search rankings.
Some of the things that slow down your site’s speed are large videos, photos, and flash files. Although multimedia elements can certainly engage a visitor, they take a long time to load, and you risk losing the visitor before they ever get to it. Consider minimizing the use of these elements on your site, and opt to link to them externally from within your site.
When you do use images on your site (and, of course, you should have some visual elements!) compress them for web use and be sure to use the right file type.
Following these pointers will help you keep your site user-friendly and ensure that people come back – as well as share your site with their friends. Your attention to your website is the difference between a ‘so what’ experience for you visitors and a ‘what’s next’ reaction. By taking the time and a little effort, you can achieve great results from your site, turning it into a powerful promoter of your business.
Until next time…
Are you ready to grow your business now? If you’re ready to take the next step and make your business more profitable, call me directly at 403-879-4297 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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