We are often approached by people looking to get a website designed, who don’t know where to start, or don’t have the time to get it going. They don’t always understand what goes into the design and development, the evolving technology behind it, or the tools, planning, and time required. They don’t always consider the people that will visit their website, either.
There are several aspects to consider, when answering the question, “What makes a great website?” We’re going to touch on three of them with you today.
Do you ever fully read through each and every paragraph on a website, especially the ones that are pretty dang long? Or do you just skim through them, hoping to catch some relevant information? If you do a lot of skimming, you’re not alone. The thing is, if your content has a lot of long paragraphs, people are skimming through your website.
If your visitors want to read huge paragraphs, then they will read a novel, most of which are known to be chock full of juicy written goodness. By shortening your paragraphs and breaking down your content, it will make text easier to read and digest.
Update your content regularly. Updating the content on your website shows visitors that your site and business is active. By far, the most well-known method of updating content is blogging. Not only are you spoon-feeding fresh content to your visitors, but blogging can be helpful for improved SEO results.
Also, take a little time to proofread your content. If not you, then try to have someone provide a fresh set of eyes on it, preferably someone that knows the difference between “your” and “you’re.” Watch for those misspelled words, improper grammar and punctuation, because they do nothing but make you sound unprofessional.
A 2015 survey done by the Pew Research Center concluded that 64% of American adults own a smartphone.
Another Pew study shows that 89% of Americans use the internet at least occasionally.
What does this mean for your website?
It means that people will be accessing it through not just a desktop, but a tablet and smartphone. Because of that, your website needs to be created in a way that offers the user a good experience, regardless of what device they are using. That, in a nutshell, is what responsive web design is about.
Websites designed responsively will look good on screens large and small. Users won’t have to squint or zoom in further in order to read text that’s tiny.
If you’re using a desktop, a great way to see if a website is responsive is to resize your browser window.
Just like with everything else in your business, you need to ensure that everything within your website is functioning correctly.
If I’m getting an iPhone, it’s going to be more than just a purchase. It’s going to be something I’m using everyday. It’s supposed to compliment my life. Because of that, every aspect of that iPhone should be working without a hitch. A similar view should be used for your website.
A fully functioning website should have images that display, and display correctly. All internal and external links should take the user to their intended destination. Contact forms should submit all inputted information smoothly, and send it to the proper email addresses or databases. Any obstacles that prevent the user from using your website properly can result in users giving up quickly and moving on.
While these are only three things to consider, the best path to a great website is one where these items are discussed with a professional web designer or design agency. They will be able to answer any questions that you, as someone who might feel overwhelmed, will have.