Why Is It Important to Have a Great Business Website?
Your business website:
- Is the first impression many people get of your business.
- Gives the best, most visible presentation of your business, the way YOU want people to understand it.
- Helps you articulate your mission, message, intention and strategy – keeps you organized and focused.
- Educates your
- Prepares all of the above to take action favorable to your business health and growth
- Is your voice and presence where you are not physically present.
If you don’t have a great business website, you’re not doing all of the above as effectively as you would if you had a great, currently updated, professional business website.
Define the purpose of your website upfront:
Business owners don’t all create websites for the same reason. It’s important to know the purpose you intend for your website before starting the creation process. Your purpose will determine everything from layout, to images to message to SEO and more. Here are some reasons businesses create their website. Which of these reasons is primary for your business?
- To attract clients and generate leads.
- To create brand recognition.
- To inform and serve clients.
- To organize and document their business message and processes.
As you can see, all business websites are not intended to generate leads, and it’s important to clearly define the purpose of your business website before creating or upgrading.
What is a Great Business Website?
Consider websites that you have caught your attention and stood out in your thinking as being very effective. What are their characteristics?
Here are 4 characteristics of a great business website…
1) A Great Business Website Engages your Audience
Think “experience” vs. “linear printed message”. How can you make your website a dynamic, engaging experience?
- Video (Let your website be an extension of your real presence, personality and energy.) Consider the value of conveying “energy” vs. “information”.
- Self-directed exploration: Link information, allowing viewers to create their own path based on their interests.
- Good writing:
- Give your viewers things to do: Request information downloads, contact you, join a community, enter into a dialogue…etc.
- Call your viewers to take specific action.
2) A Great Business Website Builds Trust
- Clarity builds trust: Make your message clear and easy to immediately understand.
- Consistency builds trust: Be consistent in the look and format, and even in the pattern of communication from page to page.
- An error-free environment builds trust: Check that all links work, that words are spelled correctly, that pages are free from formatting errors, that your message is accurate.
- Speed builds trust: When viewers get a lightning response to a click, they begin to see you as responsive to their needs and questions. When viewers get to the information they need within 3 clicks, that builds trust. When viewers quickly understand your message, that builds trust.
- Good design builds trust: Color coordination, consistency. See this color wheel article to help create a great color scheme.
- Quality images build trust: Acquire an image library.
- Longevity builds trust: Don’t change websites, keywords, message… or go in a lot of new directions.
- Focus builds trust. If you’ve got a heart problem, are you going to go to a general physician or a cardiologist?
- Testimonials build trust.
3) A Great Business Website Is Visible on the Internet.
The principles of great SEO are…
- Relevancy (Keywords define focus. Let your keywords correspond to your target market questions and needs.)
- Popularity (How many links from high authority sites in your market niche are pointing toward your website?)
- Traffic (How many hits does your website receive, and how long do viewers stay on your site?) How is your wider presence on the internet inviting people to go to your site? Funnels.
- Dynamic vs. static. The content of a great business website is always changing: Home page; Blog articles; Services; Linked social media pages…etc. This change itself helps attract the search engines.
4) A Great Business Website Has Mainstream Powerful, Flexible Content Management
- Consider WordPress with its worldwide supporting community. Constantly updated. Feature-rich plugins that extend your capability. (speed, image management, SEO…etc.)
- Go with a hosting company that is reliable, available, responsive and feature rich giving you flexibility and power.
- You have ownership and access to all your assets.
Finally, a great business website has a talented, reliable web designer who cares and is there when you need.
- Is that talented, reliable web designer you, the business owner? If so, you need to have the time to be there for your website: To conduct regular review, to make regular updates and upgrades, to troubleshoot issues, to stay on top of your website’s SEO (visibility).
- Is that talented, reliable web designer a relative or friend. Same requirements apply as above.
- Is that talented, reliable web designer a professional web designer? If so, how easy are they to contact? How long does it take for them to perform the changes and the upgrades you request? Are they there if there are technical issues? If you have a regular maintenance contract with them, are they regularly checking in on your website, troubleshooting issues before you notice them, suggesting improvements?
- Evaluate 4-5 websites on the internet for the above characteristics of a great business website. Do you notice any additional characteristics?
- Evaluate your own business website for the above characteristics of a great business website.
- What’s the single most important change you can make in the next 10 days to increase your website’s effectiveness?
- What’s the second most important change you can make after that?
- What’s the third most important change?