As we are in the prime of digital innovation, the first impression that potential customers ever make of your business or brand is often your website. As such, it is extremely important to design a website that not only is aesthetically pleasing but also functions seamlessly and directly serves your audience. But, where do you start? In our Ultimate Guide to Website Design and Development, we will provide you with all the details necessary to craft a site that is guaranteed to engage your audience and turn leads into conversions. Let’s begin!
6 Step Process to Get Started:
- Discover Your Target Audience
- Determine Your Goals
- Ensure Mobile Responsiveness
- Prioritize Page Speed
- Guarantee Easy Navigation & User-Friendly Experience
- Test, Adjust, & Keep Regularly Updated
Discover Your Target Audience
Identifying your target audience is a crucial initial step in web design because it helps you design a customized website that relates to your customers and prompts them to act. In turn, this will increase the likelihood of conversions for your business. Learning your audience’s wants, needs, and behaviors allows you to craft a website that speaks directly to them and addresses their primary concerns. Additionally, customers are likely to feel as though the website was customized for them. Not only will this strengthen your relationship with your customers, but it will also create a more positive user experience, making it easier for your visitors to come back. One effective way to distinguish your target audience is by utilizing website analytics tools, such as Google Analytics. These tools provide helpful insights into your customer’s demographics, behaviors, and interests. Other methods to determine who your audience is made up of are by conducting surveys, studying and researching competitors, and communicating with your audience through different channels such as social media. Taking this first step to get to know your audience will lay the foundation for the rest of your website, but when implemented, doing so will yield significant, measurable results for your business.
Determine Your Goals
Being a successful business in today’s digital world means it is essential to establish an online presence. But, simply having a website is not enough to lead your business to digital success. It must serve an intended purpose, as well as it must accomplish your specific business objectives. This is where determining your goals come into the website building process. Solidifying these business goals is critical to a successful website.
A recent research study by Adobe found that brands with well-defined, measurable objectives were twice as likely to achieve their business ambitions than those without clear goals. Not only will setting these goals to provide direction and operation for your website, but it will also help to analyze the effectiveness of your website and identify any areas for improvement. For instance, your brand goals may include the following:
- Increasing website traffic.
- Strengthening lead generation.
- Boosting sales.
- Amplifying brand awareness.
- Providing direct communication to your customers.
To legitimately settle on desired results, begin by focusing on what you want to get out of your site in the long term, your intended audience, and confusing a thorough analysis of your industry and competition. By forming these intents early in your website development process, you can craft a personalized website tailored to meet your precise needs and drive concrete, tangible success.
Ensure Mobile Responsiveness
As the popularity of mobile devices rises, businesses need to ensure their website is optimized correctly for a range of devices, from smartphones to tablets and desktops. If your website is not mobile-friendly, users may struggle to view content, access information, or navigate the site, leading to irritation and a higher bounce rate. Research by Google showcases that 57% of users will only recommend a business with a well-designed mobile website. Owning a mobile-responsive website provides a more positive user experience and allows your business to reach a wider audience, increasing your brand awareness and improving your online presence.
Responsive design is optimizing your website for mobile users. The type of design elements automatically adjusts the layout and content of your site depending on the specific type of device being used. This strategy includes flexible grids, charts, images, and fonts that immediately scale to fit any screen, making it more straightforward for visitors to read and move through the site. Site speed optimization should also be treated as a necessity for mobile users, as they tend to be more impatient than other device traffic regarding loading times.
Prioritize Page Speed
Today’s most successful digital initiatives move at an extraordinary pace. Therefore your website’s page speed plays a key role in enhancing the user experience and achieving your brand goals. Recent data from Google shows that even a one-second delay in page loading time can result in up to a 7% reduction in conversions.
Improve conversions by prioritizing your website’s page speed on both desktop and mobile devices. Not only does a fast loading website hold a visitor’s attention and promote engagement, but it will also improve your search engine rankings, as Google now uses page speed to determine rank across all devices. Did you know Walmart.com found that for each one second decrease in page load time, conversions increased by 2%?
Guarantee Easy Navigation & User-Friendly Experience
To keep up with your competitors in the online world, optimizing your website’s user experience is critical for acquiring new customers, facilitating conversions, and accomplishing business goals. Recent studies have shown that 88% of web-based customers are less likely to return to a website after a poor experience. Some examples of things you can incorporate into your website to help support this are easy-to-navigate menus, accessibility options, and a clear yet appealing format.
To give your visitors a better overall experience, you should focus on crafting a clear and concise structure, optimizing page load speed, and incorporating easy and engaging menus. When your business designs a site with the user taken into consideration, such as needs, preferences, and behaviors, it can greatly improve the satisfaction of each user. A well thought out user experience will also positively impact your search engine rankings, as Google considers User Experience an important ranking factor.
Test, Adjust, & Keep Regularly Updated
The remaining step in developing your website is ensuring that your site continues to meet your business goals and is evolving to the needs of your customer base. Consistently testing, optimizing, and improving your website can enhance its functionality and increase conversions. In fact, studies have proven that even minimal improvements in website load times can bring significant boosts in page visits, user satisfaction, and revenue.
A/B testing is one very effective method to begin testing and making adjustments. This involves comparing two versions of one web page to analyze which performs best. Doing this lets you identify design elements, content, and gestures that attract your audience and generate conversions. It is also a good idea to regularly use tools such as Google Analytics to track user behavior, such as which pages were visited, how long users stayed, and what actions they took. By using and measuring data like this, you can uncover improvement areas to guide your optimization efforts.
In conclusion, these steps are necessary for businesses to begin constructing a successful and effective online presence that captures their desired audience, achieves their end goals, and offers a positive user experience. Starting from defining your target audience, setting definite goals, and ensuring mobile optimization and page speed are all parts that make up a successful website. Every measure is important for reviewing and optimizing, and in the end, it can lead to your business earning more traffic, engagement, conversions, and, ultimately, profits.
If you need help figuring out where to start, we recommend researching, determining a budget, and selecting a reliable agency with website development experience. It is vital to choose an agency that understands your company goals, your preferred audience, and your industry and has proven successful in developing websites. With the right agency partner, your business can enjoy a stress-free website-building process that uses unique web design formulas built to get you leads.
If you are interested in learning more about what we can do for your website or in viewing our successful sites, get in touch with us today.
Kim works with brands since 2011 to develop and manage their digital and social media strategies; meet company objectives, such as increasing leads, engagement, and website traffic, utilizing best practices, the latest tools and strategies; and develop quality content. She is a problem-solver who loves a challenge when it comes to increasing sales.