The way you design your website is vital and can make a huge difference to the number of visitors and importantly returning visitors you get. A website that is too complex, too busy or hard to navigate will instantly put people off and may lose you a sale or enquiry.

You may not know exactly what will and what won’t work on your website until it is all up and running and you can track the progress. Analytics are vitally important to the success of your website and you should find a reliable statistics package to allow you to get the most from the results.

Google offer a great free analytics program called Google Analytics which will allow you to track a a number of different stats such as number of visitors to your site, how they found your site (e.g. Google, referral from another site or social media sites etc.). Having this information is very important and you can then analyse it full to understand what your visitors behaviour is. If for example a huge number of your customers are leaving at the checkout process then it could mean that it is too complicated.

Web design companies are becoming increasing popular as more and more businesses are realising the importance of having and maintaining a website as part of their marketing strategy.

There are many web design companies out there, so to be able to compete and stand up against the competition you need to be offering a high level of service. When it comes to web design and programming, client reviews and testimonials are very important. Potential customers want to know that you have an array of clients that are happy with the work you have done for them and may want to see working examples of websites you have created. Adding an area to your website showcasing previous works and results you have got should be a high priority.

Many web developers often struggle to really sell their services because they do not explain the product/service to the client correctly, so making sure that you know how to speak to clients in a language they understand is vital. If you struggle to do this then you may need to think about hiring someone who will manage the sales side of the business for you.  When quoting work, don’t be too greedy, if you can undercut competitors you may get the contract and possibly future work or recommendations.

If you have an ecommerce website then you should try and ensure your site is set up in such a way that you can easy advertise additional products. If for example you are selling electronic equipment then you should have an area come up that shows other products that they may be interested in. This may be batteries or cables etc. You may be surprised by how many additional products you cans ell in this way. Even if a customer knows that they can get the add-on item slightly cheaper elsewhere, they may just buy it from you because you have made it more convenient to do so.

Another way to upsell is by offering free delivery when you spend over a certain amount. You may want to add banners to your site that state free delivery when you spend x amount but also adding a message to the checkout page telling customers if they spend x amount more they qualify for free delivery. All these subtle little messages and ways of displaying additional products can make a huge difference in your overall sales and profitability.

Some sites show an area which displays other products people bought when purchasing that one. These products may or may not be linked to the purchase, but this is just another way of showcasing products.

When it comes to marketing your website you will often hear the terms on-page or off-page. This may often be confusing at first but our easy guide below gives you an over view of what you need to know for both. 

On-page optimisation is when you make changes on a page or pages within your site (such as updating the content, changing the meta data, adding links) or by adding new pages to your site. It may be that you add a blog or that you optimisation the content on a page in include more keywords. On page optimisation also includes adding XML site maps and robots.txt files to your website in order to get the site indexed quicker and correctly. On-page optimisation is done to improve the rankings on the search engines.

Off-page optimisation is techniques that are used off the actual site to improve the websites traffic and rankings.  This may include building up external links to your site, creating blogs and comments on other sites, social media interaction, uploading videos to sites such as YouTube and PPC campaigns.

A combination of on page and off page optimisation is best when you are looking to get the most out of your website.

When having a website created you need to consider how you want it to look along with the functionality that will be involved in building the site.  You should think carefully about the colour ways you want to use. These colours should match your company branding. Where you position your logo and the main navigation of the site is also crucial. You may want to go with the traditional layout of a website or you may opt for something a little more quirky.

Knowing what works on a website can be hard for the inexperienced but if you work with a design agency, they should be able to advise you what works and what doesn’t. Try and not get too personal with a website, as after all, it’s not all about what you like but what your visitors want.

Most website designers will give you a number of visuals that you can look through and decide which one best suits the website you require for your business.

Be sure you are completely happy with the design before you sign it off for programming as changes made at a later date will often incur an additional charge.