You only have one chance to make a first impression. The design of your website can make or break your business. It sets up how your customers/clients come to understand your brand and your business. Good website design will create trust and authority and doing that will help convert prospects into clients.
When developing the web presence for your company there are many things that must be considered (there are courses taught on the topic). No matter where you stand on your view of web design there are always 4 things that must be considered.
When looking at good website design there are a few things that must be considered. Considered to be one of the preeminent thinkers of design, Dieter Rams has a list of design principles that are used by designers in web design, course design, architecture, and other disciplines. According to Rams:
Unfortunately, there are not many websites that follow Ram’s principles. By using good principles, your website becomes the digital face of your business. The content that you post on your website communicates your companies brand and promise. By ignoring all the principles listed above you run the risk of confusing people as to who you are and what your company does. In that case, a prospective client will just click through.
As you consider the design of your businesses website there are a few considerations.
Navigation and UI (User Interface)
Is your site easy to move around in? Is your menu easy to find or is it hidden somewhere on your page? Make sure that at any point a person is on the page, they are able to find the menu and are able to click through to other pages.
Does your site share your message? If someone is on your site will they understand the purpose of your company within 5 seconds of viewing the main page? Donald Miller the CEO of Story brand talk about the “Grunt test”.
When someone lands on your website, within 5 seconds will they be able to answer these three questions:
- What is it that you offer?
- How will it make their life better?
- What do I need to do to buy?
Top Questions to ask yourself when producing website content.
Is the content on your website consistent and coherent?
Is your content short and to the point?
Are you using visuals to get your ideas across?
Too often websites use content that is either not consistent with their brand, too long and confusing, or no visual elements that hold a reader’s attention. There are many debates as to the of posts. Only you will know what your readers will expect. The best way to find out is to engage and talk with the readers. Ask them what they expect and what they hope to see when they land on your site. The only hard and fast rule is to stay on topic.
There is no magic formula for designing the perfect website. Your business is unique to you and only you know what your customers want and need. It is a good bet though; that by following Dieter Ram’s design principles and engaging with your prospective clients, you will be further ahead than most websites and businesses on the internet.