There are many ideas from website designers, developers and users themselves, which may be considered in order to create a wonderful website.
So…what makes a great website? The following five steps will point you in the right direction!
Organisation and Hierarchy
To obtain a professional-looking website, it will most likely be based on a grid format of some sort.
This way of organising content and images in sections and boxes ensures that the site looks balanced, structured and accessible to website visitors.
As well as making your website look uncluttered, fresh and contemporary, your visitors are more likely to hang around to read your content and look at your images, perhaps even clicking on other pages they didn’t realise they wanted to look at before visiting your website!
Ease of Navigation
Always bear in mind the ‘three click rule’ – where website users should be able to find the information they are looking for within three mouse clicks.
Visitors need to be able to find what they are looking for quickly otherwise they’ll get fed up and leave! Usually, sub-pages are great to logically structure your information and each page should contain relevant images and content to the page title.
This creates a positive user experience, meaning visitors are more likely to come back! They may also tell their friends and then your organisation builds upon word of mouth.
Original content is of paramount importance when building and developing your website.
The most obvious reason is for search engine optimisation (SEO) purposes. Rich information (which includes your organisation’s keywords), which visitors find relevant and useful, is Google’s friend! It will mean your website ranks well on Google search results, making your website and company more visible.
This fresh and inviting content, which visitors will never have read before, will also set you aside from your competitors. It should also be engaging and dynamic – and, significantly, well written. No typos, spelling mistakes or grammatical errors should ever feature on your website, blog posts or social media. If mistakes are displayed, your website visitors may think you are uneducated or lazy, which may have huge negative implications in the provision of your services. Not a great reputation for your organisation to have!
The final point advocating original content is for your organisation to communicate a strong and clear message, building your brand identity through tone and language at the same time. Success!
Keeping information displayed neatly in sections and boxes, which create clean lines, is aesthetically appealing to your visitors. This is one method of creating an engaging website.
Other methods include:
* effective images on a full-width slider at the top of your Home page (using animated images provides a dynamic approach)
* integrating portfolios, images and galleries into your content (to break up text)
* adding client testimonials and reviews (increases your organisation’s credibility to prospective customers and clients)
* writing regular blog posts (improving your website’s search engine optimisation as well as enabling website users to see something new every time they visit your site)
* displaying social media feeds (allows users to see you keep up to date with your news, events and activities)
In addition, it is recommended that you use this opportunity to integrate your organisation’s branding identity. Your corporate logo, colours and imagery all help website users build up brand awareness and recognition, which fosters loyalty and trust, hopefully leading to more sales, turnover and profit for you!
The usability of a website includes the functionality of a website within different browsers (such as Google Chrome, Firefox, Mozilla and the dreaded Internet Explorer) and screen resolutions (how many pixels your screen can display horizontally and vertically).
Having a responsive website is also vitally important, more so now than ever before. This means web designers crafting a website which provides optimal viewing (including minimum resizing, panning and scrolling, as well as easy reading and navigation) across devices like a desktop PC, laptop, tablet and mobile.
In addition, your website must comply with RNIB guidelines to ensure usability for all, through choice and size of font, as well as best practice policies regarding page hierarchy and page structure (for example headings, accordions, tabs and so on). Remember to include a zoom function!
With more people browsing the internet on the go, you need to make your website as easy as possible to read and navigate on mobile phones, particularly.
If you would like White Space to set up, build and develop your website, please don’t hesitate to contact me (Charlotte!) by email:
firstname.lastname@example.org or for more information about the services I offer, please visit: hellowhitespace.co.uk.