When it comes to designing a business website that will withstand the rigors of today's highly competitive economic environment, the rules have changed considerably. Effective business websites these days do not look anything like their counterparts at the turn of the century; back then, the focus was mostly on getting online quickly and rushing to establish an internet presence.
These days, a web presence is just one of the various factors involved in making sure that a brand is visible and efficient on the internet. With the above in mind, here are four crucial factors to consider when designing and managing a website.
Mobile Presence and Synergy
Right off the bat, business owners should come to accept the reality of web browsing these days: internet users are more likely to access the internet via smartphones and tablets, which means that websites should be "born mobile." Responsive web design cannot be stressed enough these days; a brand cannot afford to disappoint web visitors who click away from a website because it does not display well on their mobile devices.
There was a time when website visitors expected a desktop experience on their smartphones; this is no longer the case. Mobile optimization is a matter of functionality, for example: instead of offering a "Contact Us" page that simply lists a telephone number, this data element should be coded in a way that allows visitors to click and initiate a voice call.
Taking Advantage of Big Data
A business website should be more than just an online placeholder; it should also allow business owners and managers to collect data that is valuable to their brands. According to Domo, in 2017, new data is multiplying outrageously, and so it is up to business owners to include data capture and analytic components when they design their websites.
The transformation of data from analytics to intelligence has become easier than ever. Any business owner can take advantage of Big Data and all that it has to offer; the key is to install the right modules when the website is being developed.
Search Engine Optimization
Even though SEO has considerably evolved since Google started to implement major changes to its search engine algorithms, keywords are still considered to be the pillars of online discovery by consumers. To this effect, SEO is still a vital factor of website design. If anything, search engine spiders and crawlers have become more sophisticated and critical in terms of website analysis, which explains why SEO is more important than even.
An important SEO consideration these days is semantic analysis. Whereas in the past SEO strategies relied on relevant keywords, a modern strategy will focus on relevant phrases and even relevant content.
Business owners should not have to worry about SEO-friendly websites lacking a human touch; the most recent Google algorithm updates have been fine-tuned by artificial intelligence that aims to understand what makes a site user-friendly as well as SEO-friendly.
Business websites should be designed with audiences in mind. Just like film directors and musical producers respectively think about viewers and listeners, business owners should think about how their message can be delivered in a manner that will appeal to their target audiences.
The first step in engagement is to think about the voice that will be featured in the content to be published online. Naturally, this thought process should go beyond the website; it should expand to the various social networks where the business seeks to establish a presence.
In the end, the four factors presented herein will provide a good start for business owners who wish to design an effective website, but there are various other factors that web development professionals will likely recommend to augment brand image.