Deciding On A Website?

As a business or organization looking to create a website, it’s imperative that you find the perfect balance between science and art. Sounds easier said than done, of course! When crafting a web experience, you have to take into account the industry you’re working with, the message your business wants to convey, and how the audience could potentially interact with your website.

If you have an existing site, or plan to develop one in the near future, it's important to understand the characteristics that can make or break the effectiveness of your online investment. An unattractive or poorly built site will do more to hurt your business than to help it. There are four general components involved in making a website successful.

1. Appearance

Good use of color: an appropriate color scheme will contain 2 or 3 primary colors that blend well and create a proper mood or tone for your business. Don't overdo the color, as it can distract from the written content.

Text that is easily read: The most easily read combination is black text on a white background, but many other color combinations are acceptable if the contrast is within an appropriate range. Use fonts that are easy to read and are found on most of today's computer systems. depending on your audience. Keep font size for paragraph text between 10 and 12 pts.

Meaningful graphics: Graphics are important, as they lend visual variety and appeal to an otherwise boring page of text. However, don't over-use them, and make sure that add meaning or context to your written content. Don’t overload any one page with more than 3 or 4 images.

Quality photography: A simple way to increase visual appeal is to use high quality photography. High quality product images are especially important for online retailers.

Simplicity: Keep it simple and allow for adequate white space. Uncluttered layouts allow viewers to focus on your message. Don't overload your site with overly complex design, animation, or other effects just to impress your viewers.

2. Content

Short and organized copy: Clearly label topics and break your text up into small paragraphs. Don't bore your visitors with visually overwhelming text. You've got less than 10 seconds to attract your visitors, so grab their attention by being clear, concise and compelling.

Make your language clear: The web is for everyone, so make sure your information is easy to understand. Spell out acronyms on first reference, avoid insider language and explain complex or niche terms. Providing hyperlinks to other articles where your readers can get more background information on particular topics is very useful as well.

Incorporate multimedia: Pictures, graphics or video can really be worth a thousand words. Research shows that 90 percent of the information transmitted to the human brain is visual and people process visual information 60,000 times faster than text. Images also help break up text, making your page easier to read.

3. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Readers find web content through many different paths; social media sharing, links from other websites, email sharing, and search engine results. That last method is especially important for web writers. Text could be extremely well written and informative, but if it’s not optimized for search engines, chances are few people will find it.

Think of your audience and what search terms would they type into a search engine? Make sure to include those terms in headlines and sub-headers. If you’re not sure what words are the best to use, check out this post on conducting keyword research for your website.

4. Responsive Design

Responsive Web design basically means that your website should be clearly visible and look good on all electronic devices (pc's, tablets, mobile phones, etc...). So as the user switches from their laptop to iPad, your website should have the technology to automatically switch to accommodate for resolution, image size and scripting abilities.

In 2015, Google rolled out a change to the search engine algorithms which now factor in a website’s mobile presence as a ranking signal. This reason alone can justify why responsive design is important!