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Getting the most out of your website Pt2 – Design and build

defaultimgAs businesses start to struggle due to the recession, they must ask themselves “Am I getting the most out of my website, is my website really working for me or against me?”

In this 2nd part of the article we’ll aim to give you some advice on how to work through the website design and building stage and help you navigate the tricky path of getting a website and making it work for you like a hard working employee.

Firstly It is essential that you know your audience well. If you don’t know who might buy from you then it’s hard to explain to your designer (hopefully us) and for them to best preset a website that will work with that audience

You must ensure that your site is designed well. Functionality is about how the site works, design is about look and feel. This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to love the site. If you’ve picked the right design company they will be building a website for your business’ audience not for you.  Put some trust In your designer that what they are doing is in your business’ interest and that they only want to make your business a success.

Remember design is subjective therefore it is likely that someone will dislike whatever route is chosen. As long as design doesn’t offend anyone, then you’re doing OK.

Throughout the building of your website, get your friends to test it. If you’re building or working on a site there is a risk that you’ll become accustomed to it, making it difficult to objectively assess userbility and accessibility. Test it again.  Work with the design company to put things right and listen to their advice. No design company is perfect and errors will occur but it is the desire to correct them that will set companies apart.

A website needs to be simple to navigate and interact with so you must make it as easy (and safe) as possible to use. Visitors need to wowed a little but not put off and feel comfortable whilst moving around the site. There are so many good sites out there that a user will quickly leave a poorly presented site and probably never return. The hard fact is – get it wrong and your competition will be getting the customer and his/her money!

In the next article we’ll look post launch things to make your website work harder for you.

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