Ten Things Every Small Business Website Needs

The internet is full of bad websites, with bigger problems than just bad design. There are lots of elements besides the way that your website looks that go into making it work well for customers, and inspire others to do business with you. Here are the essentials that every small business websites should have on it, from contact information to testimonials, in order to effectively help you do business. 

Photo by John Schnobrich on Unsplash

One: A Clear Description Of Who You Are

If someone stumbles onto your website, they shouldn’t have to work hard to work out what exactly is that you do. This means you must cleat state your business name and sum up your products or services on the homepage. 

This tells people that they are on the right website for what they have been looking for. A clear description attracts the visitor’s attention immediately in the first few seconds and encourages them to stay on the website for a longer time. 

Two: A Simple, Sensible Web Address

Don’t make your website over complicated. Your domain name is like your brand. It must be easy for someone to type into their web browser or in an email address. 

For most websites, you want a .com domain, as users are used to typing that extension when they type out a web address. If you are a non-profit, .org is useful for branding purposes, but it’s also wise to have a .com version of your domain in case someone types the address in accidentally. 

Three: An Easily Navigated Site Map

Clear links to the most important pages of your website and a site map are both crucial tools for guiding visitors to the information that are seeking on your site. 

Your navigation should be clearly laid out. It’s recommended to use dropdowns in the navigation menu so a visitor can see the content under every heading from any page. Ideally, you want to make it as easy as you can for your visitors to find what they are looking for and find the things that you want them to now. If you need help getting your navigation sorted, use a website management company like Gatsboy

Four: Easy-To-Find Contact Information

You don’t want to lose a customer to a competitor because you made it hard for them to get in touch with you. Not every visitor to your website has the patience to click through every page on your website to find out how to contact you. 

The best place for your contact information is the top left or top right corner of your homepage, where people are used to looking for it. It’s also smart to include some contact details on every page of the website, such as in the footer, side, or top corner, so visitors can find it very easily. 

You ought to include a  few different ways for someone to contact you, such as through a contact form, on the phone, or via email. For some businesses, you might also want to provide your address and a link to your location on Google Maps. 

One of the biggest mistakes that business owners can make is to only offer one way to reach them. You want to make it as easy as possible for users to contact you on their own terms.

Five: Customer Testimonials

Honest reviews from other customers or clients can make your products or services more tangible and tempting to customers who visit your website. They help a potential customer to start building some trust in you, especially if you’re a new business. It also helps shoppers to decide if what you offer will meet their needs. People like to hear stories from real people, as they help them to find out the things you haven’t said on your website. 

Six: An Obvious Call To Action

Tell your online visitors exactly what you want them to do with very clear commands. For example, if you want them to call you to order or sign up to your online coupons, or add products to their basket, tell them in clear terms. Draw attention to your call-to-action, by using a special button or highlighting the text in some way. 

Seven: The Basics Of SEO

Your website won’t work very hard for you if nobody can find it. Become familiar with the basics of SEO so you can make your site more accessible to search engines. 

You don’t need to make use of mysterious, black hat SEO techniques to rank well on search engines. Just make sure your website is coded correctly. This means you should use the right keywords in your content, use plenty of links, name your page titles and URLs properly, and use plenty of images and videos. 

Eight: Fresh, Quality Content

For a lot of businesses, your website is the first impression you make on a customer. Make sure you give them what they’re looking for, and give them a reason to keep coming back. 

The user is looking for something. Give it to them, and make sure your content is original, well-written, and useful. 

Fresh content is also a useful tool for SEO. A regularly updated blog and connecting your social media feeds gives your company personality and keeps your content fresh. 

Nine: A Secure Hosting Platform

Online information being hijacked can be a disaster for a company and can cost you customers. You must have a secure, trustworthy hosting company to keep hackers out and keep your content up and working. You must keep your content management system up to date too to stay ahead of hackers. 

Ten: A Design And Style That’s Friendly To Online Readers

Web users have a short attention span. They will often scan through a page to sample the content first when they first open a new web page. If they feel they have landed on the right page, they will slow down to read the content properly. To make the user experience better, organise the content for easier scanning. 

To do this, break things down into short paragraphs, with clear headers if needed. Use bullet points and highlight important words and phrases. Keep design simple so the content is the focus. 

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