Top Tips For Your New Website
So you have decided to get a new website for your company. Congrats – it’s a smart move no matter how long it has taken you to get here. But do you know what the best practices are for creating a great website? Well, there is a magic formula – kind of …
There are basically TWO ways to create websites – templates or custom coding. Web platforms like Wix, WordPress and Squarespace and Shopify are all template based so have a wide range of designs already premade. The other way is to have your design custom made from scratch – a true once off original with every element of the website being individuallly coded like buttons, navigation menus and forms. The custom sites therefore tend to be about 10 times more expensive than the templated versions.
Your www address is a unique easy to remember the address for your website which can be registered on your behalf by companies like Jascom Ltd or you can do it yourself via Blacknight, GoDaddy or Register365 (and more). Our tip is to think of the domain reg like a phone number – the shorter, more memorable the better. Web addresses have almost nothing to do with how your website will rank – it’s only 1 of about 200 parameters that Google will take account of when indexing your website so don.t get too hung up if the one you want is already registered by someone else. Just pick a variation that will be simple to promote and remember.
Look and Feel
The look and feel of your website is very important when developing your website. It should be in keeping with your company logo and branding so that customers immediately associate the website with your company. At Jascom Ltd we would always build the entire look and feel from the company logo and if you dont have a logo yet then engage with a graphic designer to get one before you start your website project.
You only get one chance to make a good impressions so your homepage is key. Many successful websites follow a formula of having the following components in this order from top to bottom :-
- Navigation Bar – Menu with menu items and links
- Hero Slider – Large sliding images with attention grabbing text and call to action to click.
- Value Proposition – Header text outline the pitch for your business in a line or two.
- Value Stack – Three of four boxes which compartmentalise your services in a way that makes them simple and clear to understand.
- Latest News – Some up to date information on your products or your business.
- Call To Action – A destinctive button or section that leads the customer to take an action to engage with you further.
- Footer – A final section on the website where you can include information which doesn’t logically fit anywhere else eg Privacy, Legals, Links
Believe it or not this is essentially the formuala of every website you have ever been on. Now that you know it you will be surprised the next time you visit any website how many companies follow this layout.
Content Is King
Content is by far and away the most important part of your website. Content engages the visitor but it is also what is indexed by Google when its bots crawl your website from time to time. The trick is to get a balance between visual images that will engage a human visitor and just the right amount of relevant text/tags that Google will crawl for its listings. Write your content in a way that normal people search for it. There are lots of best practices around Headers Titles (H1, H2 ..), Alt Tags, Links and more to getting the content structured right and Jascom Ltd can help you find the balance.
Having good imagery wont necessarily help your Google ranking but it will make a massive difference to the visitor experience. Be prepared to spend money with a good photographer or spend time on taking photos yourself. Think of it as an investment and poor imagery on your website will damage your brand’s impression to existing and new customers. You can buy quality imagery online from Istock or some other sites have it for free (under licence) like Pixabay.
Security and Speed
Even though these are two technical requirements for your website – having a site that is secure (lock icon) and fast (loads in about 2 seconds) will definitely help your Google ranking. All websites should have an SSL cert nowadays and will be ranked lower by Google – even if you are not selling anything from the website. Slow page loads will also cause lower ranking so its better to have the pages structured correctly and the backend website settings fine tuned for speed which Jascom Ltd can configure for you.
Mobile responsive websites are just a given nowadays so any new website will already have this as their basis. Older website were not built with a mobile first approach so unless you upgrad your website will slowly get ranked lower by Google over time – even if you are doing everything else correctly. As a rule 75% of all websites are accessed on mobile devices so always worth checking what the experience is like across all three devices types during the build – desktop, tablet and mobile. All Jascom Ltd websites are mobile responsive and we always provide previews and testing across platform before Go-Live.