Your website is your home. You can trade from it, you can post your thoughts on it and you can show the world just how much or how little of yourself you want to. So, shouldn’t you give it everything you’ve got? The internet is continually evolving and changing, make sure you don’t get left behind. Building a website is just the first part of having your own domain, so let’s take a look at what you can do to keep up with the times while also keeping your online identity personal to you or your business.
We are going to look at what trends you can be looking into to keep up-to-date, how to make sure your website is loved by its user and also where you can search for help and advice; starting with the latest trends and how to work with them.
There are several websites dedicated to updating you on what is the latest in web design. You might prefer to do your own research but be aware that it can be a long, arduous task which gives you more information than you could ever put into practice. Trends are just that, something that is hot today but could be gone tomorrow so this really applies to you if you want to keep updating your website on a regular basis to keep on the pulse of digital society.
Really, the main aim here when it comes to discussing the latest in web design is for you to be able to see what you could add to your website rather than a complete rebuild. For example, suggestions like a floating navigation menu can be implemented on your web page to improve the user experience but wouldn’t require you changing the whole website. You’ve put effort into your site, you don’t want to throw it out but evolution is vital in the digital landscape.
Positive changes to a web page won’t just keep you modern but it also sends the message to your user that you’re still operational and not resting on your laurels. It also demonstrates that this website is one the owner is actively improving which can be an essential message in this age of high-risk cybersecurity. Security is high on the list of reasons people don’t trust a website and small changes could just put minds at ease.
On the topic of user reaction to your website, looking into the universal dislikes for sites is another important thing to do on a regular basis. For example, is your landing page taking too long to load or are there excessive pop-ups. Both of these issues can be one and the same; a user doesn’t want to go to a website and be encouraged away from it immediately just as much as they don’t want to wait so long that they end up moving on elsewhere. The digital age has made us impatient so don’t contribute to the growing frustrations of the average user.
So above we have looked at several ways to make small changes to your website which will improve usability, bring it up to trends and keep the frustrations down. But, what if you don’t want to keep on the same path? If you want to overhaul your website completely or are in the process of building a new one you can also take heed of this advice, however there are other options out there for you to consider.
One mistake a lot of people make is believing building a website is something everyone can do rather than acknowledging it is a skill. There is a reason that web design is a thriving university course. Now, you don’t have to have a degree in the area to understand what to do but seeking advice from people who do have that knowledge is neither something to be ashamed of or to shy away from.
Firstly, you will be aware there are a lot of companies offering web design services; so much so that it can be a little daunting to choose. Luckily, this is the internet and someone has already thought about that overwhelming amount of choice. Web Design Review, for example, has collated together a large number of web design companies which will give you access to well-researched information that would take you a long time to compile.
When choosing your web designer, consider what it is that you want. Some will offer social media as a free addon, others guarantee a certain level of detail but that might take longer and you’d be happier with a more basic website delivered quickly. Most importantly of all, remember the start of this writing – your website is your home. It is yours, don’t get sidetracked into owning something you’re not proud of.
So, now you have chosen your web designer and given them your ideas. They’ve worked to provide you with what you want and it’s time to go live. If your website is for customers, make sure you tell them. A small piece of your advertising budget could be set aside to promote the all new, all singing, all dancing website that your customers are now going to enjoy. This promotion doesn’t just help to attract customers but also lets the regulars know, you might be down for a short while but you’re not out of business. Customer loyalty is thought to be dropping so keeping your regulars in the know should ensure they don’t start taking their business elsewhere during your website changeover.
Owning a website is not a difficult thing to do. Owning a successful website takes a little bit more work, but work that you are more than capable of doing yourself. You can encourage new users with a few tweaks to the current set up, or you can go bold and have something completely new. So long as you continue to remember that it is your website and that it is serving a purpose for you or your company. There is absolutely no point having a website that deters users, and poor web design does do that.
Finally, if you’ve read the above and you’re still not sure what to do with your website – maybe you’re not looking for new trends or to rebuild – then take a look at the characteristics that turn people away. We’ve touched on it above but it cannot be emphasised enough, follow the basics and you’re on the path to a successful website. Things, like removing unnecessarily complex navigation and being too dull, are easily resolved by reducing the number of links and adding some colour or imagery.
Keep in mind what you like and dislike when visiting websites. Quite often your instinct will guide you well because ultimately nobody wants your website, be it for business, blogging or self-promotion, to be successful as much as you do. And if you’re not sure, ask family and friends for their advice. First-hand feedback is going to help you just as much as exploring the web for the mistakes of others.
So get your SEO in order, freshen up your home page and make sure the message you want to get out from your website is received loud and clear. Your website is your home; you wouldn’t let your home fall apart so why would you let your virtual property become ruins.
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