As a small business owner, you are probably used to taking on multiple roles to make your business function day-to-day. Marketer, secretary, accountant, representative: you feel like you can do it all. Now you are trying to take on the role of web designer, which can be a major mis-step if you are not careful and extremely detail-oriented.
A web designer is dealing with an audience with a short attention span; the average person spends about 7 seconds on a single website. In your new role of web designer you want to make sure you cater to this audience, and make it easy for them to find the information they’re looking for. If you don’t, your competitors are usually only a couple of clicks away.
The smallest mistake on your website can lead to a small business losing lots of potential customers, so the following blog is dedicated to the major mistakes made on web design by small businesses. Our major recommendation is to hire a web designer, like Plano Web Design, to make sure these gaffes and others don’t deter your small business from growing a strong customer base.
★ Mistake #1: No Obvious Call to Action
When you are designing your website, it should be clear to anyone what you are selling. Do you want them to contact you, buy something, subscript to a newsletter? You need to make sure visitors know what the next step is after landing on your web page.
All the content of your website should be dedicated to persuading the customer as to why they need your product. This way you answer the classic consumer question, “What is in it for me?” Just make sure you don’t get too caught up in that question, and forget to tell them why they need you.
★ Mistake #2: Design is too flashy or Busy
When someone arrives at your website, they more than likely know what they want to gain from the website. Creating a tremendously complex design will just make it harder for them to find the data they are looking for, especially if they are using a smart phone or tablet!
Your design should be simple and clean, but not so simple that it looks pre-Web 2.0 (hint: if you don’t know what Web 2.0 means, you should definitely look it up before designing your website). Your website needs to be interactive, attractive and useful to all customers.
★ Mistake #3: No Really, YOUR DESIGN IS TOO BUSY
One feature most software, blog websites and designers offer is a background. Backgrounds can be very pretty, but they are rarely of any use. The visual clutter in the background draws away attention from your content (by the way, your content should not be in a font that makes it hard for the user to read). The professionals at Plano Web Design say that 9 times out of 10, they recommend clients to stick to a plane white background.
★ Mistake #4: Old Content
When someone visits a website, they expect it to have the latest information about their business. If someone visits your website multiple times over the course of a year and nothing changes, they may wonder what you are up to. The worst thing they can think, which a lot of people do when reading stale content, is that you are out of business. With that assumption, they may be proactive and actually call, email or visit you, but they may just move on to another website offering similar services/products.
Make sure that you occasionally visit your website to add any necessary updates. It can be a blog entry, an update of news, posting of events, or social media updates, as this will let people know that you are ready for business.
★ Mistake #5: Deserted Social Media Sites
A lot of businesses will set up a social media website as part of their online marketing campaign. It is common and wise to set up a link on your main website to your social media pages. Social media can be a great way to amp up your customer base, but if the account is left deserted it can scare potential customers away.
If you have too few followers on your social media page it can make people think that your business is too small to handle the problem they need to solve. If you do not update your social media platforms, it can make them think that you are out of business or that you don’t care. So if you are going to use social media as a marketing platform, make sure to make it a lively and vibrant scene, otherwise do not even bother.
★ Mistake #6 Hire Someone to Design Your for the Wrong Cost
Paying too much or too little for you web design can leave you with a faulty product. If you pay too little, you may just get what you paid for, an amateur web design. If you pay too much, you can end up not getting your money’s worth.
At Plano’s Web Design, they offer reasonable prices that will reflect how much a business owner is willing to invest in their web design. They know for small businesses the bottom line is making sales conversions with their website, and will not make you blow your budget to create a website that will be useful to your current and potential customers.