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A Business Owner’s Guide to Advanced Web Design

There are thousands upon thousands of articles all over the web telling you that, as a business owner, you need a spectacular website for your company or practice. What most of them don’t tell you, though, is what it takes to actually get a web presence that makes your business stand out online and attracting sales or revenue.

Maybe that’s because most web designers want you to contact them before they give up the goods, or might be because a lot of the firms vying for your web design business don’t have spectacular track records to show off. Whatever the reason might be, we find that a lot of new clients come to us with a clear idea of the results they are looking for, but few definite notions about how to achieve them.

To help you get your web design project started off on the right foot, we’re going to share our advanced guide to web design. In just eight questions, it will lead you to the answers you need to build the online marketing powerhouse you’ve been envisioning for your company…


Question #1: What Will Your Website Be For?

Surprising numbers of business owners want a website “because they need one.” That’s true, in the sense that even food trucks have to be online these days. However, it really only scratches at the surface when it comes to the reasons to build a new site in the first place.

The purpose of your website could be to generate online sales, to help you attract leads, or to simply promote your company to local buyers. You may just want to impress referrals, or to automate customer service tasks (like frequently asked questions). The purpose of your website might be to support email and social media campaigns. It could be all of these things.

Whatever you're setting out to do, make sure you and your creative team know what the goal is before you begin.


Question #2: What Do You Like or Dislike About Your Current Website?

If you have an existing website, ask yourself what you like about it. Also, figure out what definitely needs to be changed.

The answers could involve different creative elements, pieces of functionality, or even bottom-line results. Maybe you like the look of your website, but you feel like it isn't doing enough to further the sales potential of your business. Or, you may think you have good images, but your written content isn’t strong enough. Finding these preferences will help you zero in on what you need for your next website, and keep you from duplicating mistakes.

If you don’t already have a website, think in these terms about other sites you’ve seen in your industry. You can learn a lot from your own past mistakes, and the missteps of others.


Question #3: Who Will Design Your Next Website?

There are more web design companies, and online template-based services, than ever before. That’s great for convenience, but not necessarily for business owners who need to get a good deal on web design.

That’s because even though web design prices might be coming down, quality and customization standards are decreasing, too. Because you don’t want your website to simply exist, you can’t settle for pages that don’t do anything. In other words, if you want to generate leads and sales, you have to have streamlined coding, a unique look, and a marketing plan that brings customers to you online or to your physical location.

It’s unfortunate, but getting a great website sometimes means paying a little more in time and money. However, those investments will come back to you again and again if you make a good decision.


Question #4: Do You Have the Ingredients for a Great Website?

Having a strong web presence is about so much more than the right design. Aesthetics are important, but what goes beneath them matters a lot, too.

In particular, we are talking about the need for a domain name that’s easy to understand and remember. You could add to that fast and secure hosting that speeds your pages up and keeps customer data safe from hackers and thieves. Additionally, you can’t build a great website with sloppy content, old or blurry photos, and outdated logo images.

If you aren’t sure you have all the ingredients for a great website in place, either start gathering them or talk to your web design team about what you might need. Everything that comes later in the process is going to be easier when you begin with a solid foundation for your company’s web presence.


Question #5: How Do You Want Your Website to Look?

Most business owners have a certain look they want for their new website. You should think about the colors, fonts, and layouts you prefer.

These days, you can do almost anything online. That’s great from the standpoint of creativity, but it can also present an overwhelming number of choices. You’ll notice that most established and successful businesses have a somewhat standard look to their websites. Paragraphs are short, links are easy to find, and menus are presented in a certain way. This all helps make a site more usable for visitors. Even people who haven’t been on your pages before should understand how they work and be able to find the information they need quickly.

Think carefully about the aesthetics you want on your website, and consider ways you might be able to emphasize usability. That will make your web presence more valuable (both to you and your customers) in the long run.


Question #6: What Functionality do You Need on Your New Website?

We have noticed over the years that business owners tend to pay a lot of attention to the way their new websites should look, but not as much to what features and functions need to be integrated. That’s unfortunate, because websites can help you save a lot of time and money through automation, not to mention boost profits with e-commerce and targeted marketing.

When you know what you want your website to actually do for your business, it gets easier to create a profitable platform that can help with every aspect of your bottom line. Also, you can translate those wishes to your creative team, who can plan ahead and give you more accurate quotes and timelines.

In many ways, the biggest difference between websites that simply exist and those that actually help the companies they were built for has to do with programming and functionality. So, think carefully about what it is you want your site to actually add to your business so those features can be the focus instead of an afterthought.


Question #7: How Will You Promote Your Website?

No website, no matter how beautiful or functional, has much value if customers aren’t regularly finding it and visiting its pages. That’s why web design and internet marketing now go hand-in-hand; one doesn’t have much purpose without the other.

When it comes to actually promoting your new website and drawing in customers, there are a handful of tactics you will almost certainly want to pay attention to. These include search engine optimization, social media marketing, email promotion, and pay-per- click advertising. It’s crucial that you not only plan to make these a big part of your approach from the beginning, but also choose a creative partner who can help you to develop profitable and sustainable campaigns.

It’s difficult for most business owners to plan and follow through with online marketing on their own, so choose a team with a history of success in this area to help you.


Question #8: How Will Your Website Be Maintained?

Even the best website is going to need updates, additional plugins, and fresh content from time to time. Additionally, regular website audits are important for locating technical issues like out-of-date links or slow page performance.

Expect to maintain your website periodically in the same way you would a car or truck. It’s a lot easier to make small updates and additions here and there than it is to replace your website altogether sooner than you would otherwise have to – or worse yet, ignore your site and fail to win the leads and sales you were expecting.

Work with your creative team to develop a reasonable schedule that allows you to maintain your site over time, thereby preserving its useful life, accelerating your online marketing results, and giving you a much better return on your investment.


The Real Question: Do You Want a Website, or Sales and Marketing Results?

Getting a website is easy – there are literally thousands of companies out there who can offer to build you one. However, if you want a real web presence, complete with ongoing sales and marketing results, you need to work with an experienced team who will take the time to understand your business and the challenges you are facing.

Why set yourself up for frustration by selecting a partner that doesn’t have a track record of success? At Kinetik IT, we have earned our reputation as Arizona’s top web design and online marketing team. We’ve helped dozens of companies like yours to establish themselves online and turn their websites into bottom-line results that hold up year after year.

Contact us today to set up a free consultation and see what our team of experts can do for your business!

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