Websites age faster than you think. Many businesses that designed their website with the best intentions just a few years ago now find themselves wondering why their customers aren't converting to sales. If that has happened to you it may be time to consider a website redesign. Here is a short, simple list of essential elements for all websites in 2015:
Responsive Design (RWD)
Just a couple of years ago, most sites - if they even considered mobile websites - had a designated, separate mobile site for the small part of their audience browsing on portable devices. In 2015, that's no longer effective. No less than 60% of all internet access comes from a mobile device, with visitors utilizing all types of screen sizes and browsers to look at your website. Only a site that's responsive, adjusting dynamically to the various screen sizes, can give your audience a positive experience that keeps them coming back.
But responsive design isn't just essential because of its usability. Search engines like Google, recognizing the mobile trend, look favorably upon responsive websites. In other words, if your website isn't responsive, it's time to realize you may be hurting your sales. Learn more about RWD here.
Calls to Action (CTA)
Once upon a time, in a land not far away most businesses used websites for sharing the features and benefits of using their product or service. In other words, they built online brochures. But thanks to the rise of inbound marketing, that's no longer a successful strategy and if you are still going that route you are missing valuable conversion opportunities every day.
Your website should actively educate and engage your audience and compel them to reach out to you for more education and engagement - and eventually sales. Websites should capture visitors with a lead magnet form, who have shown an interest in your brand, getting them to connect with you or give you their information for further contact opportunities.
In other words, a successful website in 2015 needs a clear goal and at least one call to action on every page, guiding visitors to connect on social media, contact you or request more content. And since the average web visitor tunes out after 15 seconds on your site, that call to action needs to be prominent and easy to find at first glance. In fact, your design should drive eyes to your CTA.
Focus on SEO
Finally, being found on Google and other search engines is no longer "just desirable" - it's essential for the success of your online marketing. No less than 93% of all internet experiences begin with a search engine, and up to 70% of these start with Google. If you want to reach your audience, your website should rank highly on Google. And to achieve that, the entire site needs to be designed with a focus on search engine optimization (SEO).
SEO is a complex topic, but there are several fundamentals to keep in mind. Start by focusing on targeted keywords, which means you should research exactly what your ideal customer is looking for when they're searching for a company like you and then write your content with those keywords in mind. But be careful not to go overboard - Google now detects when websites try to cram their keywords into content (keyword packing) and may penalize you if you get caught. The better solution is to come up with relevant content and work your keywords into that naturally. In addition to your web page content having keywords, your blog posts, white papers or ebooks, videos and images should organically include relevant keywords and phrases.
Of course, these are just a few of the many SEO and design-related factors to keep in mind for an effective website in 2015. Contact Alternative Advertising to see how you can get your aging website the facelift and proactive strategy it needs!