Importance of a website
I shouldn’t be taking any space on the internet talking about why it’s important to have a website in 2019.
If someone is interested in you or your product/service. They will look you up. Don’t make it impossible for them to look you up. The internet is growing into the kind of monster who will create a web presence for you if you fail to. If you create an instagram business profile and don’t connect it to a facebook page, it creates one for you. If anyone marks a location on google as your company’s location it will use that as your profile. Every account you deem necessary for your business leads to multiple profiles of your presence. If you have a twitter account and use hashtags, random aggregator websites will have a preview of you.
It’s best that you keep control of your web presence. But it’s easy to screw it up too. Let’s find out how to not screw up your website.
It’s the cheapest form of marketing:
Don’t have a PR team spreading tales of your heroics? Don’t have a large marketing team to make sales collateral? Well, pump your website with how you want your brand to be perceived. If that’s the only way to find you credibly on the web, it’s the only perception-builder in your arsenal. I’m not advising you to frame yourself as the embodiment of a God, just learn how to make it work for you.
Getting it wrong can cause irreparable damage:
For the above mentioned reason, be truthful. It’s not a crime to boast, but there’s a fine line between singing your own praises and misleading.
Don’t be too pushy:
I worked with a manager who wanted to put a lead generation form on every page of the website. He wanted to achieve that through a form larger than the contents of the page itself because he believed that users don’t provide their information to companies only because they’re not asked to. Sarcasm aside. Don’t be pushy. Set objectives for each page on the website. Strategise and create a journey for the user. Take them from one important page to the other to build their trust and once they’ve taken the journey, ask them to contact you. You website content needs to establish confidence, not desperation.
Use customer-speak instead of company-speak if you have to:
Again this is a grey area. You need to establish your brand tonality through what you present. If you’re full of jargon, you won’t be memorable. Focus on getting the point across without boring the visitor. If you have an annoying manager pushing jargons through your keyboard, opt for the jargons that the visitor uses instead of the ones that you’ve coined on your own to appear serious.
– talk in your customer-speak, not company-speak
Get your priorities right:
As mentioned above, you need to set objectives for your website. One common goal for the website altogether and maybe smaller strategic ones for your inner pages. Objectives can range anywhere between; lead generation, brand awareness, investor showcase, customer showcase among others. Pick one for starters and be subtle about the secondary objectives. If you’re too aggressive with multiple objectives then you’re alienating people who are actually paying attention to your website. Don’t confuse them. You don’t want to come across as a scammer.
– get priorities right: for investors, for customers, for enthusiasts
Don’t look like a dinosaur:
It’s 2019, the users and the user experiences provided by internet giants have evolv
In my observations in the web projects I’ve been a part of, I’ve seen one mistake that stands out. Imitation. It might as well be the best form of flattery, but it only benefits the ones you’re imitating. Give me this but in black is an easy brief to give, but this sort of laziness is often-times a horrible mistake. Your website is your ultimate “time-‘to-shine” asset. Be original. I can hear you say ‘nothing is original’ as I type this. But there’s a wide line between inspiration and blatant copying.
Less is perfect:
Have you heard of the term, ‘minimalism’? I’m sure you have, it’s taken over as a trend in every facet of life. It focuses on just the essentials, just like you should too with your website. One challenge I’ve faced over the years working closely with brand stakeholders is that they want to overload their platforms with information that might not be relevant. Again, we’ll circle back to the “objectives” we must set before building our website.
” If you have an objective, you have a strategy.”
You’re a blog and want people to spend extra minutes on your pages? Interlink with interesting content and fill up the page with engaging anecdotes. You’re a service provider and want to focus on the stalwarts you cater to or have them supporting you? Paint your web pages with logos and testimonials.
You want to generate leads? Focus on the end-customer benefits, talk about what makes you better than the competition and then sell them on a shiny deal with conveniently placed forms. Now, if you put in 1000 jargon-laden words of content in your service description, and end the page with a form for people to know more, why will anyone fill it? What you couldn’t achieve in 1000 words, you’re not likely to achieve with follow up emails. Instead have a 300 compelling word description (Need someone to write it for you?) and give away the remaining 700 words as a downloadable asset once contacted.
Figure out what’s best for your brand and provide relevant content to get the idea from your head to your visitor’s in quick time.
When briefing a designer for your website, never give them…
– look like 2019, unless you have heritage
– less is perfect, don’t you want a reason for them to contact you?