Best Practices for Local Business Website Design
Website design, functionality and customer user experience are the core ingredients of a high performing business website. In this post we will cover the best practices of business website design and how this works to rank, attract and convert visitors into clients.
Why it’s important to follow the Best Practices of Website Design?
In order to achieve the best outcome for your business online, it’s important to follow the steps that have been proven to work and get the best results for your business.
The Google and Bing search engines are compliance based, meaning that they have a set of rules and standards that must be met in order to rank well and also be meet data privacy laws. This includes laws in different countries around the world such as the GDPR European regulation and The Privacy Act 1988 in Australia.
What Are the Best Practices of Local Business Website Design?
- Built on a professional CMS:
In simple terms, a CMS is a Content Management System where you can create web pages that contain information about your products, services, blogs and information about your business.
This may be in the form of text on pages, images or video.
WordPress is known as the world’s most popular website building platforms with 28% of the world’s websites powered by WordPress.
- Built for Mobile Devices:
Today, Google prioritises its Mobile search library as the number one source of search results. Websites must comply and be ‘Mobile Friendly’ or Responsive.
You can run a free Mobile Friendly test here with Google. If your website comes back with a negative review, we recommend passing this information on to your Web Design professional to make corrections asap.
Search Engine Optimisation is the process of developing content, applying configurations to a website that drives organic (natural) search results and traffic (visitors) on the search engines.
As mentioned in our recent blog on Content Marketing, this method can be done for free over the long term in contrast to paid ads online.
- User Experience:
The visitor must be able to easily find what they want and take action to arrange a solution or product to solve their problem fast. A bad experience will have visitors quickly ‘clicking off’ a website that does not meet this criteria and move to a competitor website that does. Research has shown that they will not return to a bad website and may share a negative review about it online, harming a business’s reputation – this must be avoided at all costs.
In addition, your website must be fast to load on computers and mobile devices. This is a critical measure for user experience and Google ranking. Slow websites will be penalised by Google and have bad ranking results if the user experience is slow.
What Else Should Your Local Business W
The above technical criteria support the content of the website that does the work of attracting, selling and converting visitors to take action and become a client with your business.
- Branding that is consistent for you online.
- Page copy (text on the pages).
- Call to Action – what Customers do next to take action.
- Contact options – email, Live Chat, Contact forms.
- Connect Social Media accounts using icon links.
It’s important to take the time to consider what will be written on the pages, what images/video are chosen to match the words. In addition, what to say to entice visitors to contact you to start a conversation.
There ae a number of good sources online that can help with these tasks and people who are trained SEO copywriters that you can outsource the job to.
How Link Building Can Impact Upon Website Results
Link building is the process of acquiring links from other websites to your website to build credibility and authority online.
This post won’t cover all aspects of this process but, mention it as an important criteria to assess and manage with your web developer team.
How to Choose A Website Builder
There are many schools of thought on this topic. The first thing to consider is, do you want to create and manage your business website yourself, in house, or, pay a professional to do so.
Some considerations should be given to the DIY approach being:
- Do you have the technical skills to build the website?
- Will you have time to build and maintain it?
- Do you have the skills to manage backend components including hosting and security?
If you feel like you do, then great! There are plenty of good quality resources, courses online to help you get started and achieve the outcome.
There are also a number of paid online services where you can use preset templates and set up guides to create a website. These include GoDaddy, WIX, Gator
We don’t recommend using these platforms for a number of reasons.
You do not own the platform outright and are limited with functionality and some optimisation tools. These companies have the power to change the functionality in the backend at any time, allow what you can and can’t do to optimise your pages for search results and more.
We are not criticising the competition here but, sharing real-life client experiences from using these platforms.
Systems like WordPress allow you to have full control over your website and apply any custom change or feature as you desire.
Does Your Website Meet the Standards?
With the new year, now is a good time to arrange a website audit to check if your website is up to scratch. This can be achieved using a number of free online tools to gather initial information such as speed and mobile friendliness.
Tools to Test Are:
At this stage, it’s best to contact your web developer to conduct a full website audit and make improvements based on these benchmarks.
This information should form part of your regular admin and maintenance of your digital assets to ensure integrity over the years.
Taking these steps will make a positive impact on your business online and customer interactions.
Share your experience with us
What has been your experience with your business Website and customer interaction? Is it functioning as you expect, attracting customer enquiries? Share your experience with our community by leaving a comment below.