5 Habits of Highly Effective Websites

Posted by ImageWorks Creative Team February 16, 2009

How Can Your Custom Website Build Credibility and Drive Sales?

Highly Effective Habit #1: Upfront Strategic Planning

Action without a plan is no better than a plan without action.  We recommend you have both, of course.  Your website plan should address important questions, including:

  • What is the purpose of your website?
  • Who do you hope to attract to your website?
  • What are the needs, wants, and/or desires your website fulfills?
  • What other choices do your desired customers have to fill the need(s) you serve? 
  • Why would a customer choose your company over others?
  • How will potential customers find your website?
  • How will you communicate your offerings and points of difference to the visitors of your site?
  • How will you convert website visitors into paying customers?
  • What is the specific navigation plan/outline for the content of your site?

Highly Effective Habit #2: Quality Content

When it comes to your website, quality content is your lifeline.  People use the Internet to gather information about the products, services, and topics that fill a current or future need, want, or desire.  If you can provide the information a potential customer is looking for – Bingo.  Your prospect need not look further.  And if you cannot only provide information but also provide a compelling reason to buy – in come the sales!

Highly Effective Habit #3: Design Excellence

Did you know that the credibility of your website rests almost entirely on the design of your website?  Well, it’s worth repeating. Your credibility rests almost ENTIRELY on the design of your website!  And when we talk about design we’re talking about what your website looks like as much as how it works.  Hiring a graphic designer isn’t going to cut it – you might end up with a good looking site but chances are it won’t work like it should.  Your website should custom designed, each element hand crafted, and carefully built by an experienced web development team that includes marketing experts, graphic designers, and programming experts.   Think you can hire a team like this on the cheap?  Mmmm, good luck with that.   Read here to find out what it costs to build an effective website.

Highly Effective Habit #4: Programming Excellence

Does your website follow the requirements of the W3C, Google webmaster guidelines, and industry best-practices?  Is your website built upon a leading-edge content management framework that enables your site to grow and evolve with your company, automatically increases search engine results, and easily adapts to changing technologies?  These programming details are no longer optional for companies that seek to rise above their competitors.  If your team lacks the capability to build a website to the highest programming standards, at a reasonable price, time to reconsider.

Highly Effective Habit #5: Ongoing Marketing and Support

Think of your website as a living breathing part of your brand, not a one-time investment that can be left to fend for itself.  To get the most from your online presence, you must be willing to invest in the following:

  • Ongoing measurement and evaluation to determine what’s working and what’s not, and to understand how the features, functionality, and design (among other things) are affecting your results.
  • Ongoing updates and maintenance to add or adjust features, functionality, and design according to real world metrics, in order to positively affect your results.
  • Ongoing search engine optimization to ensure your website is found by potential customers who are looking for your products or services online.
  • Ongoing advertising, public relations, email marketing, social marketing, blogging, etc. to promote your brand and drive traffic to your website.
  • Ongoing technical support to quickly and efficiently address issues caused by today’s complex and ever-changing online environment.

We have seen time and time again.  Companies that follow the 5 habits reap the rewards of increased credibility and sales.  Those who don't, well don't.  Need help?  Contact ImageWorks at 800-308-8573 or Request a Quote.

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