1) Learn from the others
Before deeply diving into site building, especially if you donâ€™t know exactly where to start, the first advice I can give you is: study the competition!
Looking at websites made by others can give you an idea of how to set up the structure of your web project and also can give help on which content to use.
Do you need to create a website for a restaurant? For an hotel ? Do you need a portfolio website for your photos?
Simply search google for the keywords relevant to your industry (e.g. "photographer london") and discover some sites made by others.
You donâ€™t need to copy them: this is extremely useful in order not to start from scratch (the wheel has already been invented, donâ€™t reinvent it!) and to study the work of those who have already spent time to create a site for your marketing sector.
I advise you to go past the first 3 results.
When looking at these sites, you should ask yourself some questions:
- Which pages have been created? In addition to the main page, (the well-known Home), are there other pages like "Who We are" and "Contacts"?
- Does the site contain a "blog" or "news" section? Is it updated frequently?
- Which colors were chosen? Is there a brand logo? Is there coherence between the colors of the brand and the others in the website?
- Where is the navigation menu?
- What is there in the header of the pages? What is there in the footer (or footer) ? Is the information in the header and footer consistent from page to page?
- What are the pages where actions done by the end user are required? (e.g. newsletter subscription, contact form and so on)
Put together the answers to these questions. As you proceed studying an increasing number of sites, youâ€™ll realize that some "good practices" are quite common and you will also learn some basic User Interface competence.
2) Sets the Objectives and Requirements
After the study of the competition, you need to have an idea of the goals you want to achieve.
Here are some possible goals:
- Users subscribing to your newsletter
- Encourage visitors to contact you through a contact form
- Get the most visits/clicks possible to earn from advertising
- Sell (for e-commerce sites) or increase bookings (for accommodation sites)
- An online showcase to reinforce a brand and clarify mission and services to the users
From the point of view of those who visit your site there are three fundamental requirements:
- Be easily navigable
- What you do needs to be 100% clear
- Be useful for your customer
3) Think of a Structure for Your Site
We have clarified what are the most useful sites in the competition and which goals you want to achieve.
It is now time for some action: you need to decide the structure for your site.
Iâ€™ll give you a concrete example.
Suppose you own a restaurant and you want to create a simple website for the visitors to get to know you and contact you.
It makes sense to have:
- An "about us" page where you present your business, highlighting the year when you began working, a photo of the staff and everything that shows the love you put in your daily job.
- A "Menu" page that shows your food specialties
- A "Contact us" page with a Google map, useful to bring your customers straight to the destination. A form to contact you.
You may later add other pages to show the premises that will welcome your customers, a "Blog" (or "News") section with the latest news, or articles that may be of interest and relevant to those who visit your site.
The more you update your site, the higher are the chances of being found on Google and the other search engines.
All pages must be well linked with each other through a menu (that must be consistent in each page).
With these things in mind you can get to work on Flazio!
If you are not very practical, creating a website from a "blank page" is a very complex activity: we advise you to start from a pre-arranged template with an already-made base structure that you can easily adapt to your business.
Flazio has many video tutorials that can be helpful: this is another good starting point.
4) Use Simple Structures and Quality Content
There is a saying that fits perfectly to this fourth hint.
"Less is more", that is: with fewer things, youâ€™ll have a better effect.
There is no need to use hundreds of objects within a page, simplicity is always preferable to an excess of information. In addition to making a faster website (loading time for your pages will decrease), this a fundamental requirement, especially for those who browse using mobile devices.
The white spaces between the paragraphs make them easier to read.
Use inspirational images and never use bad quality pictures.
Always proof-read what you write.
5) Make yourself easily findable
Getting found by more and more visitors is almost certainly the main purpose of a good website.
Assume that the mobile traffic increases exponentially: for this reason, donâ€™t forget to make your site visible on smartphones and tablets.
And now that I have the site? (you may ask!)
Always remember that creating a Site is not the Point of Arrival!
The techniques to get more visitors can be many and all of them can be more or less effective.
For sure they require patience and strategy.
We quote some of them, but each of these techniques requires some in-depth study:
- Optimize your site using the words (or even better, the semantic concepts) that customers are looking for.
- Use Social Networks to build relationships with your customers. The social networks are the best way to distribute quality content, to listen to your customers and, obviously, to bring traffic to your site
- Put some budget on paid campaigns: social networks and advertising in google can bring on your site the contacts that belongs to your ideal target
- Use the Digital PR: do networking, get to know the portals that could bring you traffic and suggest them to add a link to your site (this will improve traffic and your SEO positioning)
As you can see, there are lots of techniques to bring customers on your site.
Now itâ€™s time to put things into practice!
We remind you that Flazio has a team that can help you in the creation of the website and also in its marketing and promotion: for more information on Flazio Experience, click here!