Sometimes knowing what NOT to do can help you make better decisions on what to do. Whether working with a provider or building a website yourself, it is important to understand the design and formatting best practices. To help you along the way, we’ve compiled a list of five things to avoid as you develop your website.
- Website…what website?
The biggest mistake a small business can make when optimizing their online presence is to not have a website at all. A recent GoDaddy study found that 59% of small businesses with five or less employees do not have a website. Your website is your digital storefront and gives customers and potential customers a chance to understand who you are and what you have to offer. While customers may have found you on Yelp or Facebook, a website makes your business more credible and trustworthy.
- Your website doesn’t have a clear call-to-action or contact info.
When people visit your website, you want one of the first things they see to be a clear call to action or contact information. As they navigate your website and review your products and services, make it easy for them to engage with you directly. What do you want them to do when they visit your website? Call, email, subscribe, buy? Whatever it is, make sure this is clear and prominent on your website.
- Your website isn’t optimized for mobile devices.
Since many customers are conducting searches on mobile devices for local businesses, they will simply overlook a business that doesn’t have a mobile-friendly website. As a result of this behavior, mobile-readiness of a website is now a major ranking factor on Google.
What this means is if your website is not mobile friendly, you will show up farther down in search results than a competitor’s website that is mobile friendly. In other words, a mobile-friendly website gives your customers and potential customers a good mobile experience with your business and also helps you rank higher in related mobile searches.
Use Google or Bing’s mobile friendly testing tools to check if your website is mobile friendly.
- Your website doesn’t have reviews or testimonials prominently featured.
Word-of-mouth continues to be the most trusted form of marketing that exists among your potential customers. Today, much of these discussions are taking place on ratings and review sites like Yelp. In addition to having a presence on these review sites, you should collect a mixture of positive reviews and post them prominently on your website. This will help build trust between your company and potential customers.
- You don’t track the amount of traffic to your website.
After you’ve built a website, it is also important to track how that website is performing. A website that no one visits isn’t useful to your business, so make sure to track page views using a website analytics tool like Google Analytics. Spikes and declines that coincide with the beginning and ending of a marketing campaign you executed can help you see how these efforts impacted site traffic.
In addition, it is crucial to understand how people are using your website. A useful website analytics tool will help you answer the following questions:
- How long do people stay on your website?
- What pages do they visit most when they are there?
- What time of day do people look at your content?
- What websites are driving the most traffic to your website?
Finding the answer to these questions should help give you an idea of when to post content, where people are finding you and much more.
Your website is an important part of your business identity. As more and more people go online to find local business information, especially on mobile devices, it is important for you to have a website that effectively represents your business. Your website should work to drive new business, so make sure to avoid the mistakes listed above.
For more information on how to build an effective web presence, click here.