Do’s & Don’ts of Web Design for Small Business

At Localmize, we build great websites for our clients that increase their search engine optimization and therefore increase the number of visitors/consumers that find their business. We love the work we do and truly love helping our clients build their brands and grow their businesses. If you’re a business owner looking to build a website, we would love to hear from you and do whatever we can to help. We know though, that a lot of new businesses go this alone when they’re just getting started. Whether you’re ready to reach out to a creative team of experts (cough, cough, Localmize) or you’re attempting web design on your own, here are some do’s and don’ts that you’ll want to keep in mind when creating and building your website.

  1. Create and Affirm Your Brand and Its Identity

One of the first things we ask clients about is brand, colors, fonts, logos or decals. If your brand already has an established look or feel, you’ll want to stick to it. Rebranding is an entirely different topic for another blog post! If your business is new and we get the creative job of helping you develop your brand from the ground up, then way to go! You have an entire creative design team at your fingertips to ensure you get it right from day one. If your brand is established, your creative team should help build on that look and find ways to integrate it throughout your site.

  1. Be Visually Pleasing without Being Annoying 

While this sounds like a no-brainer, it’s really easy to figure out how to add sound or add images that slide in or pop up, or animate content, and then over utilize these tricks. While some design features are a lot of fun and can make a site look very high-end, keep in mind….nobody likes popups, sirens, flashing lights, too much movement or excessive chat boxes. Animation or movement on a website can be an integral part of telling a story or moving a consumer through a page, but overuse of any one visual trick or God forbid, using them all at the same time, is just too much! You want your site to grab interest and lead your consumer to what they are there for. Don’t lose track of how your consumer thinks and what they need. Lead them down that road without annoying them!

  1. Menu & Sitemap 

Step one: create a menu. 

Step two: make sure your menu actually leads your consumer somewhere.

Yeah, that’s about it. Menus are often overlooked by first time designers. We “fix” a lot of first time sites that are basically just a page of information. Lack of content and therefore, lack of a menu is a quick way to have a site that never shows up in a search engine. Which leads us to content….

  1. Strong Content

Content is more than just listing your inventory or showing what’s for sale. Well, it should be anyway. Content is all about keyword density. Google has algorithms that read keyword use. These algorithms are everything by the way. When you do a google search for a product or service in your area, Google’s algorithms go to work to determine which companies are listed at the top of that search. At Localmize, we audit every page of our content that we create for our clients and we don’t publish that content until our standards are met. This process increases SEO and activity for our clients. 

  1. Target Your Audience and then Speak Directly to Them

You know your target audience better than anyone else. As you create content and your sitemap, make sure you’re speaking directly to that audience. If you are an HVAC company, as a consumer, I want to know why my HVAC unit isn’t working, how you can fix it and how quickly you can be here. You talking over my head about the inner workings of a system or specific parts and distribution information of those parts isn’t going to help me much and now I’m bored and have moved on to someone else! Think of a Dr speaking to you about the mitral valve of your heart located between your left atrium and left ventricle! What?! I just want to know if it can be fixed and if you can do it! You’ve got to speak to your consumer so they can understand and make the decision right then, at that moment, to buy from you or to schedule service with you. Our digital capacity for attention and decision making is measured in seconds when it comes to online consumer decision making! Use your consumer’s time wisely. 

  1. Call To Action or Sales Conversions Often & Easily

This is a big one and it follows what we just discussed. Most online consumers spend less than 20 seconds making a decision to purchase something online. Have a call to action link or button on every page! Examples include: 

  • Shop here
  • Browse Our Products
  • View Features
  • See It Yourself
  • Contact Us
  • Book Appointment
  • Get Social
  • Keep In Touch
  • Ways To Connect
  • Never Miss A Post
  • Try It Out
  1. Stick to What Works

While you may want to create a flashy, never been done before, type of site. There is a reason and an algorithm that most sites stick to for a reason. Don’t try to recreate the wheel by assuming you can do it better or flashier. We can help you create a well developed website that leads consumers to a buying decision with your company. Stick to what works! 

  1. Desktop, Tablet & Mobile Users

If you’re creating your own website, we cannot stress this enough! About 51% of online consumers use their phone or tablet to shop or search for products and services. If your website doesn’t read easily on these devices, you’re missing out on 51% of your target audience! Test your site. Test it again on a different device. And….test it again! 

There are lots of ways to mess up a website design, but the biggest of them all, is to never start! Get your brand out there! Get noticed! Get more business. What are you waiting for? Contact us today to see what we can do for your website! Contact | Localmize (That’s a nice little call to action right there).