Knowledgebase: Tips & Tricks
8 Tips for a Successful Website
Posted by Support on 22 December 2007 02:39 AM
Many factors contribute to a successful website. Here are some basic principles.
  1. Think strategically. How does your web site fit into your overall marketing plan? A small amount of planning and consideration can save a lot of money and frustration down the road. Is the web the best way to market your product? Are you willing to learn what you need to know to succeed online? Even learning how to shop for competent people to create your website takes time and energy.

  2. Plan for search engines. How will you attract visitors? If you expect to get the majority of your traffic from search engines, you'll need to work plenty of research, content writing, and link development into your plan.

  3. Make usability a top priority. Don't be tempted by Flash and fancy drop-down menus that don't work on all browsers--expensive design is not always good design. Great web design is attractive, professional...but also appropriate to the audience, and above all easy to use. If your customers can't find their way around your site, they will leave. Any inefficiencies will detract from their experience and count against you - avoid time wasters like slow-loading pages, useless "splash screens", and complicated page hierarchies that force a user to clicks too much to get to what they want.

  4. Take full advantage of your website. Your website should contain
    1. all the information they need to make a decision to purchase or contact you
    2. an easy and fast way for them to buy or contact you
    3. a phone number, email, and contact form in case they have any questions.
    It should also contain information about your company in order to establish trust. You don't have to pay by the word on a website--it's a very inexpensive medium, so there is no reason to skimp on information or photos.

  5. Keep it fresh. Make sure you have an easy way to update your website that you understand and are comfortable with. If you don't keep your website up to date it will quickly use its usefulness and you will be reluctant to direct people to it.

  6. Consider your e-commerce options carefully. There are many merchant account providers, payment gateways, and shopping carts out there, but not all are created equal. Many carts are badly coded or have poor customer support. If a large part of your business will be dependent on programming solutions, be sure to research them thoroughly and understand the differences between them.

  7. Create trust. Your visitors will often know nothing about your company but what you say on your website. So make it good. Trust can be created by testimonials, descriptions of your company's history, refund policies, and the overall quality of your website.

  8. Solve your customers' problems. Everyone is pressed for time and energy - make your website the fastest and easiest way to get the product or information you provide. Create new and useful methods of helping your customers and they will love you.
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