The 5 Biggest Mistakes Of Web Design

The 5 Biggest Mistakes Of Web Design

Anyone who faces the​ challenge of​ having a​ website built faces a​ very daunting task, indeed. You know your business needs a​ web site, or​ perhaps you need to​ rebuild what you've already got. Getting this right is​ a​ delicate balance of​ business objectives, usability for​ the​ web, and​ search engine promotion. Getting it​ wrong is​ what this article is​ designed to​ help you avoid.
Here are the​ five biggest mistakes you must avoid.

1. Not establishing objectives

Without a​ thorough plan to​ kick things off, what are you building? It's kind of​ like showing up at​ the​ airport one day and​ saying, "I'm going on a​ vacation." Where are you going? Where will you stay when you get there? How long will you go for? Can you afford it? Did you ask your boss for​ the​ time off? Did you shut off the​ oven?

To start, figure out what you want the​ benefits of​ your website to​ be. Forget about the​ bells and​ whistles required to​ make it​ happen; that's the​ job of​ your web designer. Establish what you want your website do for​ your business. Some examples: generate leads, sell your products/services right on the​ website, reduce administrative tasks, brand your company, pre-qualify prospects, recruit employees – the​ things a​ website can do for​ your company are virtually limitless. Establish your objectives and​ ensure that you and​ your web designer understand them fully.

2. Ignoring your customers

We're talking about your messaging here. It's so easy to​ write your content from an​ internal perspective. What you want to​ say, what you think is​ compelling, what you think matters. What about your customers? Don't forget that you need to​ convince them to​ do business with you.
The key to​ writing good, customer-centric content is​ to​ understand the​ "why". Why should your customers buy from you? You might think you know, but a​ good dose of​ objective research will uncover the​ truth. Capitalize on your unique selling proposition from the​ perspective of​ how it​ benefits your customers.

You will also need to​ use proper web style in​ your writing. Your content should be well organized, highly scannable, easy to​ digest, and​ to​ the​ point. if​ you can organize it​ in​ a​ "pyramid" style, even better. This is​ where the​ most important, compelling information is​ presented first, and​ deeper information follows (such as​ technical specifications). Depending on your strengths this may be difficult for​ you to​ produce, so you may consider hiring a​ professional writer or​ copywriter.

3. Forgetting the​ marketing

There is​ an​ old Kevin Costner baseball movie that has an​ analogy that is​ so clichéd I simply cannot bring myself to​ repeat it. in​ the​ realm of​ baseball and​ the​ afterlife it​ may be true, but in​ the​ world of​ the​ web, it​ sure isn't. When your website is​ built, it​ is​ an​ island; and​ a​ deserted one at​ that. Your customers don't know about it​ and​ neither do the​ search engines. You need to​ tell them. You need to​ market your website.
Getting your website noticed by the​ right people is​ key. You're not actually marketing to​ search engines here. Search engines are simply a​ means to​ an​ end. You need to​ market to​ your customers. You must understand that your customers use different online methods to​ find what you sell; and​ this most likely includes search engines.

You may also consider newsletter advertising, email advertising, PR campaigns, social networking, etc. the​ exact approach you need to​ take depends on your objectives, how your target audience looks for​ what you sell, your budget, your industry, etc.

4. Not measuring the​ results

So, how did you do? You built a​ great web site and​ marketed the​ heck out of​ it. How many people came to​ your site? How many became leads? How many leads did you turn into customers? How much were they worth? What content did your visitors like and​ not like? {Insert your own redundant questions here}

Just like any marketing venture, you must measure the​ results in​ order to​ find out if​ it​ was successful. I'm talking about things like:

A tracking plan. Your leads might call you instead of​ buying online or​ using your contact form. You need a​ plan to​ track them, and​ how they found you. if​ you're running offline marketing campaigns, setup a​ separate domain name, create a​ unique web page, or​ use a​ separate 800 number. Online forms specific to​ a​ marketing campaign can be really useful as​ well. Statistics and​ reporting. Good statistics can tell you a​ lot about how people use your website. Google Analytics is​ a​ wonderful package, easy to​ install, and​ totally free. More than this, you need to​ understand the​ numbers, and​ draw conclusions. This takes quite a​ lot of​ practice and​ understanding. a​ professional web design or​ marketing company can help you with this. Adapt. Use your results, don't just read them. This will invariably require consulting with an​ expert again, but you need to​ act on your results to​ improve them. This is​ an​ on-going process. Forever.

5. Getting Paralyzed

A lot of​ web design projects never see the​ light of​ day because they get mired down in​ perpetual planning. There comes a​ time when you need to​ act. You won't get it​ perfect the​ first time out (or ever), but you've got to​ move. if​ you aim, re-aim and​ re-aim forever, you'll never actually get off a​ shot. Aim – shoot – repeat.

A quick caveat: I'm not telling you to​ put up a​ poorly written and​ poorly constructed web site just to​ have something; that can be very dangerous. a​ bad website can turn customers away and, even worse, have them poison your business through negative word of​ mouth. What I am telling you to​ do is​ to​ not get paralyzed trying to​ perfect your plan. Hiring the​ right team of​ experts can get you on track, and​ get things moving.

Hopefully this article helps steer you away from the​ most common (and dangerous) pitfalls of​ web design. Whether you hire a​ professional, create your site internally, or​ do it​ on your own from start to​ finish, keep these tips in​ mind.

By avoiding these five common mistakes you can ensure that your website has a​ fighting chance. Let this article serve as​ a​ map so you can avoid, at​ a​ minimum, some of​ the​ bigger and​ more costly detours.

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