You start a business and realise that most of the visitors are leaving your website just after landing! Wondering why? Maybe your website seems boring, or not attractive. 

Good web design is the most effective growth tool for a business. Everything from the company’s logo, website’s appearance and usability, to marketing brochures must be smartly designed, as a poor design may be the reason that your business gets killed.

Hence, here we have given you 10 effective web development tips that would improve your website’s success.

Have a plan

The most basic thing to keep in mind is having a plan. You should know about your current customers. In order to do so, interview them, research how they went from a visitor to becoming a customer, map the buyer’s journey. Design your UX and UI accordingly. Consider a few questions like what pages will they view? What content would interest and attract them? And what offers can convert them? All these questions will provide you with the data that you can use to map out your strategy. A web development company takes care of all these plans for your website. They have the resources and experience of getting this research done professionally.

Optimise your website loading speed

Keep your website’s loading speed in check. Slow speed makes the users leave even before the website’s content can make an impression. Some factors that slow the loading speed of the website include data-intensive photos and graphic elements. Compression without losing quality is possible if you design your graphics and motion graphics properly. Use them smartly for maximum impact and quick loading speed.

Remove anything that is unnecessary 

Certain elements are going to detract from the actual message and value you’re trying to convey. These include complicated animations, long and preachy content and stocky website images. The audience only has an attention span of 8 seconds. Hence you need to get the main points across in the first impression. Therefore, you must use short and powerful sections of content and appropriate pictures/ icons. Jargons and ambiguous terminology should be avoided in order to make your content widely understood by all. 

Include follow and social share buttons

If your website lacks social share buttons, you could be missing out on a lot of social media traffic generated from the users who are already reading your blog. They allow you to share the page directly on any social media channel like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter or even another website of yours. They act as tools that are non-pushy but still encourage social sharing. So, if your website lacks some social sharing and follow buttons, go add them now! 

Add call-to-action buttons

When a visitor lands on your website you have to provide them with some sort of direction so as to follow a pathway of operation. Call-to-action buttons indicate the next step the user should take on a page. Many projects and designs aren’t accurately successful to use them to guide the users through a website. Some example of call-to-action buttons include- click here for information, sign-up, watch the video, check price, etc. Also, different colours evoke different messages, so think about the message you want to convey and use those colours in the buttons on your website. 

Navigation

Navigation is the key when designing your website. A confusing or disorganised navigation interface is the worst part of any website. Visitors should be able to find what they are looking for easily. Hence the content of your website should be streamlined with a hierarchy of navigation. Your website should have a responsive design. If the users are not able to find what they are looking for, they will leave your site and go to a competitor that offers a better user experience. 

A detailed homepage

Don’t be scared of a slightly longer homepage. Your homepage should include 3-5 sections that help direct new and recurring users both to proper areas of your site and this helps create a seamless experience.  Some of the crucial elements include- intro video, an overview of services, product features, about us, testimonials, case studies, resources, etc. After all your homepage is the heart of your website.  

Optimise for mobile access

Your website MUST be optimised for mobile access. Facts say that 80% of internet users own a mobile. And most people search on a mobile device. So if you have a website that keeps lagging on smart-phones, you should be concerned. Optimise your website so that it can be accessed through a mobile device as well. Adjust it to the size/shape of the screen and make it intuitive and easy to navigate. 

Remove your 404’s

Even though search engines don’t punish you severely for soft 404 errors, users definitely will.  When users click on a link or an image, they are expecting it to take them to the next place. And encountering a 404 error page annoys them! After slow page loading time, a 404 error is highly frustrating for the user. A 404 error page means that the webpage they were trying to reach could not be found on the server. So, check if your website has any 404 error landing pages and remove them. You can do so by visiting the Google Index, login by your domain and give the URLs of the 404 error pages to Google. Google will take care of it! Additionally, make sure that when a user lands on such a page, it provides them with an option to get back on track. 

Have white spaces 

White spaces are an essential design element that help you break up the page and increase readability. They are also called as ‘negative spaces’ and refer to the areas around elements on a page that are empty and lack visual or content items. These spaces give your website a polished look and increased graphic captivity. Hence use these whitespaces to your advantage! 

Conclusion

Now that you know the 10 web development tips to improve your website’s success, you just need to implement them! Make sure that you don’t skip the design aspect! Work with your web designer and graphic designer to find the best strategies to execute web development without losing your touch and sense of the business. All the best!

Author Bio: This is Sanket Pawar, a full-time professional blogger.  Working at Web Ratna LLP from last 2 years.  He also loves to blogging on trending topics that prove helpful to others with their personal and the business works.

 


It’s one of the most visited pages on many websites and yet easily overlooked by business owners. Often it’s relegated to the bottom of a website, and for other sites, it is missing. So, we’re here to share how to write the perfect About Us page for your website.

A client of mine recently confessed to me that after a year of putting it off, she had finally begun writing her About page. The reason for the sudden action? A customer had emailed and asked why she didn’t have one! That was enough to get her moving on it quickly.

For many people, it is the most difficult page on your website to write. It can be hard to know what to say when you live and breath your business every day. Writing their passion and brand story succinctly is a task many would rather avoid. However, done correctly it can have a massive impact on your personal brand and business.

Creating your About page

When thinking about how to write the perfect About Us page, it’s important to remember that people want to do business with people. A bright and engaging About page gives readers the opportunity to get to know the person behind the brand. A common mistake people make when writing an About page is thinking that it is a page about them. Instead, remember you are writing this page for your audience whether that’s your customers, client or readers. Consider what information your audience needs to know about you, to like and most importantly to trust you enough to want to do business with you.

First person or third person

Choose whether you will write your About page in the third person or the first person. There is no right or wrong, and both work well. Although there are many ways to write an About page, it should always be authentic and personable. Here is an excellent example from Time Stylers of an About page that is written in the third person but is still relatable and provides insight into the person behind the brand.

How to write the perfect about us page

Keep it short but informative

Many people find that they either have too much to say or not enough. If you find yourself wanting to tell your life story, consider writing a separate post specifically about your journey and provide a link on the about page so that those who are interested in reading more about you can do so at their leisure. If on the other hand, you find you are stuck for words, ask a friend who knows you well to help you identify the information you should share.

Tell your brand story

Include the brand story or the history of the business and how it has changed or grown when thinking about how to write the perfect about us page. Provide some insights into why you started your business and the values your business represents. The Thankyou company does a great job of using statistics and facts to share their brand story and passion for their cause as well as introducing the key players in the business.

How to write the perfect about us page

Explain the problem your product or service solves

Describe the people that you help, outlining the typical issues that they face and how you help solve the problem for them. Here is an example by Moxie, who make sanitary products. The note from founder Mia Klitsis effectively explains problems women can easily relate to when it comes to menstruation.

How to write the perfect about us page

Share something personal

To avoid oversharing and boring your readers keep it light, humorous and exciting. After sharing your story, you could try including five things your readers may not know about you!

Choose a conversational tone

Write as if you are speaking to a friend. A great way to do this is to shorten your words.

For example, I have not been in the industry as long as others, so my ideas are fresh.

can become;

haven’t been in the industry as long as others, so my ideas are fresh.

Keep the page engaging by breaking up the layout

Keep people reading your page by ensuring its design is pleasing to the eye. Avoid too much text, create intentional spaces and different elements for the readers such as images, video, breakout boxes and infographics.

Include an Image of yourself

An image of you is a must for an About page. Choose a high-quality image that is authentically you and demonstrates how approachable and professional you are. Photos of you doing what you love is always a good idea. If you are a gardener, include images of you in the garden. If you are a cook, then have some photos of you in the kitchen. Another option is to have a short welcome video on the page that people can view if they choose.

Introduce the team

If you have a team, then a picture of you with them can work well. The Big Group, a catering and events company, does this particularly well. They have included some fabulous fun images of their team in different working environments

How to write the perfect about us page

Include social proof

When you’re thinking about how to write the perfect about us page, remember it’s not just a bio. A great way to gain trust and credibility is to include some of your success stories, your best reviews, logos of companies you’ve worked with or awards you’ve received.

Call to action

Every good About page should have a call to action. This is a great place to encourage your readers to connect with you. A link to subscribe to your newsletter or an offer on your product or services works well here.

Don’t forget to share how your reader can get to know you better by providing your social media handles.

There is no time like the present. Its time to get writing and sharing with your readers an insight into why you do what you do.

Have you got any other tips you’d like to share?

Sarah Makris
About Sarah Makris
Sarah Makris is a Personal Branding and Communications coach based in Melbourne, Australia. She teaches clients how to upgrade their communications skills so they stand out in their industry and get the flexibility and rewards they want in their careers. Visit her website www.sarahmakris.com.au.

This is the second post in our “Things to ask” tech series. Click on the link to read the previous article about “Three things to ask… Your software developer“.

Whether you’re a freelancer, a consultant, a business owner, or even someone in the arts, a website is one of the most important parts of selling yourself. In our always-connected world, a lot of the time your website is the first impression you’ll make on your potential clients or audience, and we all know that first impressions matter.

Your website will be your calling card, the front page to you and what you stand for. But for many of us who don’t have the skills to develop a website ourselves, we need to hire someone else to do it. There are many people who claim to be competent web developers, but far less who can actually back up that claim. How do we know that we’re not going to be taken for a ride?

Here Kasia Gospos, the founder of Leaders in Heels, shares four things you should ask your website developer.

Can I see your previous work/contact your previous clients?

…ask them specifically what part of the website they builtWhen looking at a developer’s portfolio, be sure to ask them specifically what part of the website they built. Websites are often built by multiple developers, sometimes over a long period of time. Don’t simply assume that the websites in a developer’s portfolio were completely built by them–they may have come in much later and only worked on a small area.

This links in to contacting the developer’s previous clients. A developer can easily make their look more glamourous than it actually was, so chat to others who have worked with them and ask how effective and reliable the developer was. Someone who’s not willing to give any references should be a bright red warning flag!

How many changes can I make?

Don’t forget to ask about ongoing costsNo matter how glitter-eyed you are over a particular theme or design, there will be changes. Most of the time, there will be a lot of changes. Confirm upfront how many rounds of changes are included in the price, and whether the changes allowed are large ones or small ones. Changing the size/colour/style of text or adding a button is a small change. Adding more features to a page such as transition animations or a shopping cart functionality is a big change.

Don’t forget to ask about ongoing costs. If you discover a change you missed during the initial build, how much will it cost to fix the problem?

How can I make the build more cost-effective?

It’s easy to get carried away with great ideas for features and page designs, but custom builds will take more time and, of course, cost more money. There are many standard website themes and plug-ins that will give you the functionality you need, if you’re willing to compromise. Ask your developer whether there are existing templates or code that can be used instead of building from scratch, and how much that will save on the final bill.

What are your payment terms?

The best approach is to agree on payments scheduled by agreed milestonesIt’s important to be clear on this from the very beginning. Does the developer require payment upfront? Half now, half when complete? The best approach is to agree on payments scheduled by agreed milestones such as implementing a new style, additional pages, a shopping cart, or SEO tools.

Also ensure that the contract enables you to pull out easily in case you realise the developer has a different vision to yours that they’re not willing to budge on, or if their work isn’t up to the quality you expected. There’s nothing worse than getting halfway through a build, realising it won’t work, but having no way out until the end when the entire site has been built and invoices paid.

Do you have any other questions you think are important to ask your software developer? Share them in the comments below!