A good website can be a great tool for boosting your sales. On the other hand, a poorly made website can turn customers off to current and even future products. Here are some tips to creating a website that will help you, rather than hurt you.
1. Consistent look. Have you ever noticed, while every page of a magazine looks slightly different, there’s generally a consistent organization, color scheme, and overall look to the whole magazine? This helps users who read the magazine find exactly what they’re looking for quickly and easily. In the same way, if you keep your web pages consistent, your customers will have an easier time finding things.
2. Test different browsers. So, you’ve set up your website and it looks exactly how you want it. Then your customers start getting upset because they can’t find items, figure out how to order, or even see simple parts of your page. The likely problem? Their browser. Contrary to popular belief, not everyone uses the same program to surf the web. It’s recommended that you design your page so it can be seen well on most, if not all Internet browsers.
3. Support. While it’s great to have an awesome website, if it goes down or has other technical issues, you’re not going to be making any money off of it. Plus, it will probably upset your customers as well. Once you get your website up and going, be sure to keep it going and get issues and bugs worked out as quickly as possible.
4. Keep it simple. Your site should look good, and can have some special features, but if it’s too complicated or the colors and designs are just too much, you’re likely to lose customers. Try to keep it simple with just a few special touches. Keep it appealing without being overwhelming.
5. Keep it coming. It’s great to get information from a website, but it’s a pain to go check for updates all the time. Keep your users updated by adding a newsletter or RSS feed. This is a great way to keep them updated and introduce new products.
6. Get feedback. Running a business is all about helping the customer, so why not improve your site by asking your users what they want. You can add a quick survey or just a suggestion box to the side of each page.
7. Make searching easy. If you have a lot of information on your website, try adding a search box so visitors can easily find what they’re looking for. A search box will help them find what they want and keep them coming back in the future.
8. Have content. If your website is mostly links and advertisements or sales pitches and products, there’s not going to be much on there to inspire people to stay at your website. You have to have quality content on your site. Plus, if done right, good content can also help you get links and go up in the SEO rankings.
9. Have discussions. Almost any website can be benefited by adding a message board. This is not only a great way to answer people’s questions and keep them coming back, it can also be a great way for your customers to get to know you and trust you as an expert.
10. Have fun. If you don’t like your website, and don’t like working on it, it’s going to show through in your work. Just because a topic might be able to make money, doesn’t mean you will find it interesting. Try to create websites that you have an interest in and want to keep going.