Your website is the heartbeat of your online presence. If your entire business works online, you need your site to be a place where users want to spend time.
You could have the best social media presence, be supported by influencers, and reach a large audience with your posts, but if the online foundation isn’t done right, none of your other efforts matter. Before anything else, you need to make sure your website is built and designed properly, and contains the right elements to be the home of your online business.
With that in mind, here are ten mistakes you want to avoid.
1. Don’t Under-Plan the Usefulness and Impact of Your Site
Before the boom of social media, most companies only built an online presence with their sites. This meant working to ensure they had top-ranking pages and an easy place for users to visit. Of course, this was also a time before most e-commerce programming was offered as well. In today’s world, you’ve got to build your site and work outward with a solid and comprehensive plan. You can’t over-plan your site and its impact on your business.
2. Don’t Forget to Add More Value than Just What You Sell
Yes, your website is meant to sell products and services offered by your company. This isn’t a secret, and your visitors know this as well. One of the best ways to keep people on your site, and visiting your pages is to add more value to your site than just what you offer. You can do this by offering simple maintenance tips for products or talking about when your services make the most sense for your site visitors. This will help your site be more value-oriented and engaging.
3. Don’t Use Slideshows on Your Home Page
If you visit older sites from car dealerships, you’ll find a slideshow of offers and deals that scroll by and tell you about the sales. While this information can be helpful if this isn’t the focus of your homepage, it’s not useful. Skip the slideshow and put the deals and offers in a drop-down menu to give your users a cleaner look and a better on-page user experience.
4. Don’t Forget to Update Your Basic Information
Have you ever visited a website only to find that the name, address, and phone number of the company aren’t present? How can your visitors contact you and know where you operate? Even though many sites now offer chat answers to questions and email or messaging contact to the company, the basics of name, address, and phone number are still important. This is especially true of your Google information if you expect your local customers to visit your physical location.
5. Don’t Forget About Your Blog
Your blog might only show up as a page in one of the drop-down menus, but this part of your site can be integral to your overall online success. This is where your site can reach a larger audience and offer posts that can be shared on your social media pages. Often, the blog will include a link or several links to landing pages that offer various products and services that answer some of the pain point questions your customers might have. Your blog is extremely important and must be utilized.
6. Don’t Let Your Site be Hard to Navigate
The best way for you to understand whether or not your website is easy to navigate is to have someone else use it. You’re intimately familiar with the site and know where everything is, but your visitors aren’t. How and where will they find what they need? Do all of your drop-down menus work correctly? Are all links sending users to the appropriate landing pages? If your site is hard to navigate, users will go to another site that is easy to use.
7. Don’t Use Old, Outdated, and Poor Quality Photos and Images
If the image you want to use isn’t a high-quality image, it shouldn’t be on your site. When you want to showcase products or services, take new, updated photos, and make sure they offer the highest possible quality for your site visitors to enjoy. Your photos could be the deciding factor for some shoppers to consider your company a professional place to do business or a place that doesn’t care enough to offer their best online.
8. Don’t Use Videos That Are Too Long
You won’t get many viewers to watch a 30-minute video unless they are in need of a complete tutorial. Most of your videos should use the TikTok limit of three minutes, and some can be even shorter. If you want to convey a long message to your audience, consider making it a series of videos that are shorter, giving your audience a chance to grab the parts of the information they want without spending a long time watching.
9. Don’t Start a Website Without SEO
SEO strategies might have changed over the past several years, but the basic goal of SEO is still the same. You want your site to find its way to the top of search engine results pages for the terms used in your content. You could have the best site in your industry, but if your SEO is sorely lacking, you’ll never have any visitors to your site. An SEO expert can help you create the supporting content that can push your pages to the top of the search engine results pages.
10. Don’t Have a Slow-Loading Site
Speed matters, and it’s not the tortoise winning this race. If your site doesn’t load in three seconds or less, it’s too slow. Each page should load quickly, easily and offer your visitors an instantaneous experience. Ensure your pages load quickly using various tools that review this time and offer suggestions that can help you improve the site load times and present information quickly to your visitors. You’ll lose potential customers with a slow site.
Use these ten suggestions to improve your website and avoid some of the most costly mistakes that could keep visitors from working with your company.
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