Designing A Website That Reflects Your Brand
The world wide web is a place for everyone to craft their own little corner. It’s big enough for the big gigs and local enough for small businesses to find exposure amongst the larger leagues. However, if you’re trying to build up your own brand, either online or amongst your community, you’re going to need to spend a bit longer on your design and potential reach. It’s good business practice, and just makes the whole venture a lot easier when it’s done properly.
If you’re an entrepreneur, and looking to be up and coming with your brand or business, you’re going to need to build yourself a good website to not only allow everyone to find you when they want and you need them to, but it also reflects how invested you are in your service or product. If a website looks good, people are going to stay longer to see everything you have to offer. With that in mind, here’s a few tips on how to make a good website and include everything you’re going to need to make sure your clients stick around to hire you out and pass you onto their friends.
Use Colour to Your Advantage
Colour is incredibly important to the human brain, and that means it needs to be used to elicit a reaction from anyone viewing your website. So, first of all you’re going to need to choose a palette and use it to good effect.
If you’re running a website that needs a good conversion rate, or planning to include a retail element to your site, you’ll probably need to take into account your target market and their age and purpose for visiting your website. If you were running a site for kids you’d probably use bright and bold colours to draw them in and make it a more fun experience, such as bright yellows and reds. However, for adult customers you’re going to need to be a little more subtle.
If you’re selling to a predominantly female audience, or your product or service is geared towards them, you’re also going to need to take into account this fact. Colours like blues, purples, and greens, are pleasing to a female eye. If you’re selling to a mostly male audience on the other hand, blacks and greys are going to be a lot more comfortable to look at.
Yet blues and greens work for all, so this is a good palette to incorporate. Blue is a good calming colour, and can make people feel more secure about making a purchase or hiring a service. This makes it a good colour for new websites to use, as your reputation will probably need a little working on at this point. Green is similar in its uses, but is more geared towards the outside due to the plant likeness about it, so is a good colour for those of you working out and about.
Display Testimonials Right
Included in your website design, you also might want a good design around your testimonials to make it interesting to look at from face value. We’ve all been there; looking to find a good review and it’s been the same old stuff each time in a poorly made video or quick scrolling sentences, and we just don’t want to know when it comes to it. So, making the testimonials easier and even more fun to read is essential to keep people interested in your brand.
Testimonials are important to display, of course, but customers don’t want them to be in their face. Similarly, nobody wants to see the same statement regurgitated by 3 different people as soon as they open up a homepage. They want to be impressed by your work and your implied statement with your website design. So you’re going to need to incorporate these reviews in a different way.
Try and get long testimonials for people to really sink their teeth into, and let new potential customers settle down with a trustworthy story that gives plenty of detail on your service or product. Similarly, whilst a good production value is needed, use a multiple media technique, with stories and videos so everyone can review in a preferred way.
Keep Your Brand Prominent
Your brand is what you’re trying to sell and what your website needs to revolve around, so you need to give it character and substance. Make sure there’s good emotional connotations to it, and there’s a lot of that to be found in aesthetics. This is where colour plays in once again, and also where a good design format will never fail you.
Make it original and make it stand out. You don’t want something bland and boring just because it works and is easy to sort out on a standard web page. Maybe it’s a good starting point, but you don’t want to leave it at that. Use images that work well together and contrast each other to elicit passion and creativity from a customer if you work in the design business, or a good mix of trees, skylines, and flowing blues if you’re a gardener for hire.
You might also want a good header for people to immediately pinpoint you with, and that can range from pictures, words, catch phrases, to anything. Something that’s incredibly prominent however, and makes you seem more legitimate, is a logo. Think of all the big brands that we can name just by seeing a pin badge that represents them, whether it’s in the form of an apple, a big yellow ‘M’, a target, or a swooshing tick. Even just naming the logos enables you to name the brands! So, if you need yourself a logo, use a logo generator as it’s more likely to look professional and be made to a good quality and in a format that can be incorporated anywhere.
Make sure your logo is easy to see, whether that be off to the left or right or slap bang in the middle.
Make the Site Load Fast
Slow loading times are the biggest conversion killers. If a web page takes longer than 2 seconds to load, the person behind the screen is already disinterested, and if it takes any longer than that, they’re just going to close down the tab.
Similarly, if there’s a slow loading time on a retailing website, it’s a sign of untrustworthiness. People who live, work, and shop online are always on the lookout for secure websites and places that their contact and card details are absolutely going to be safe. If you take a long time to load everything in, whether it’s because your bandwidth is too short or your latency is too long, people aren’t going to trust you. Wham, you’ve just lost a potential customer with a far reach on social media and amongst their friends and families away from the screen.
For a quick monitoring check, you can easily look at the speed of your loading with sites like this, which is also free to use. If you’re too slow, look into ways to make your speed faster by decreasing HTTP requests, which means you need to reduce scripts and minimise on your images.
Because of all these factors, slow load times have a damaging effect all round. To get more customers, you’re just going to need to decrease these possible long load times to make your site more secure and less annoying to deal with, for both you and your clients. This can be done by reusing a lot of media you’ve created for one section of your website and repurposing it, giving the bandwidth less to load.
Make it Accessible
A website should be accessible, as this makes sure the entirety of a target market can find your brand online, which is what you’re using to garner exposure anyway. So accessibility refers to anybody being able to use your website, and if you can include all types of people, whether they have physical or learning disabilities, in your website design, you’re going to build up a much better (and bigger) reputation.
Your load order and tab order need to be exactly the same, so it’s easy to navigate using just the keyboard, which is an accessible stationary item. Similarly, make sure everything is clearly defined with headlines so posts or products are easy to locate and check out.
Alt tags are another genius invention that makes a website accessible to a whole subset of people who need their system to read out the content for them. Alt tags make this a lot easier for an automated system to do, and thus the user is going to spend a lot more time on your website.
So there’s a lot of work that goes into designing a perfect website, nobody tends to underestimate that. But even with this in mind, you’re going to need to make sure everything is in the right order and loads properly, and that’s just for a good user interface experience.