Your business may be just starting to explore the opportunities available to you through online marketing, or you consider yourself a veteran of the digital wasteland and perfectly poised on the cutting edge of online trends. No matter where you stand in the online marketing maelstrom, one thing that is vital to your company’s success is the establishment of a virtual presence in the form of a business website. Internet usage, regardless of the reason, has reached unprecedented levels in the past couple of years, and mobile gadgets have provided users with easy and immediate access to information.
Coupled with Internet accessibility that covers practically every nook and cranny of the planet, the level of usage has given business owners and marketers the ability to pitch their products from deep within the high-traffic urban sprawl to, quite literally, the completely unpopulated middle-of-nowhere. Simply having a business website, however, isn’t enough to keep your online marketing efforts moving forward. To attain the level of success you are no doubt hoping to achieve, you need to make sure your business website has five specific and essential components.
Naturally important for any website, it is even more so for business websites. Fully functional navigation for your website is critical for two primary reasons. First, it lets visitors know what they can find on your site and where to find it and, second, it provides a virtual ‘map’ of your website to search engines that examine, evaluate, and index your site and the pages it contains. If visitors and search engines are unable to successfully and easily navigate around your site, the parts they are unable to access – or that are difficult to access – might as well be invisible.
Have you ever visited a company’s website searching for a way to contact that company by phone, in person, or by mail, only to find yourself growing more and more frustrated as you continued to sift through their confusing jumble of site pages without finding what you’re looking for? If your business website doesn’t contain information on how to reach you, your visitors feel the exact same way. People who are interested in contacting a company do not want to see ‘contact us’ forms and feedback pages. They want a physical address and a telephone number that will be answered by a live person. Companies who don’t provide those details, clearly and prominently, often give the impression that they aren’t interested in their customers.
Despite what you might think, Internet users appreciate simplicity, especially when it is part of the basic design of a web page or website they are interested in viewing or visiting. Overly cluttered web pages are extremely lonely ones, with potential visitors quickly clicking away as soon as the see the mess you’ve made of your page elements and content. Keep your page design simplistic and minimal, and only include information or page elements that are essential to providing visitors with what they need to know. If the content doesn’t inform, engage, or motivate, it isn’t necessary.
Calls to Action
There has always been a debate raging about how CTAs should be designed and where they should be located on a web page, along with several other aspects of calls to action that really aren’t worth debating in the first place. The most important things to keep in mind when crafting your calls to action are that they should be clearly visible, distinct in what action you want the user to take, and specific in terms of what the result of the user’s action will be. Using ‘click here’ as a CTA is as useful as not including a CTA at all. You should avoid using multiple calls to action on the same page unless they all point to the same destination; this avoids the paradox of choice, where a user will refrain from making any choice at all when presented with what he or she considers too many.
More important now than ever before, creating a mobile-friendly business website is an absolute requirement for any company. The use of mobile devices and gadgets continues to grow by leaps and bounds, especially with the availability and affordability of those devices reaching a level where they are accessible to almost everyone. A large percentage of people do most of their online activities while they are on the go, so it’s vital that are able to provide valuable information to your users no matter when, where, or how they attempt to access it.
While these five elements of a business website may not propel your company’s online presence to overnight success, they will provide you with a solid foundation and a strong backbone for building that presence further. Making sure your visitors receive a user-focused and optimally enhanced experience is critical to online success. You can become actively involved in that online success by giving your visitors a business website that stands head and shoulders above the competition in today’s virtual marketing realm.
We are a digital marketing agency that delivers compelling marketing solutions, branding, designs, and web development to professionals in the Legal, Medical, and Business Markets. Our experience helps deliver great results across several key areas.