Small businesses need to be represented in those consumer online searches even if they don’t actually sell products or services online. And, I think I’ve made it pretty clear in previous posts that just having a website isn’t enough. If a website isn’t appealing or functions poorly it could hurt a business more than help it.
Businesses looking to avoid those problems and make the most of their website can do so by avoiding these four common mistakes.
Avoid complicated web design — Every bell and whistle known to the website man that can fit into your website is WRONG. Why is it wrong? If your website doesn’t load quickly and accurately in the numerous web browsers as well as different versions of those web browsers (I think Firefox may have ten different versions out there at the moment), people will leave your site and never return. The deep abyss of website hell has begun for you.
Like I’ve explained to my clients a thousand times, less is more on a website.
If you are building your own site, make sure you check your website against ALL browsers and their different versions. How to do that, you ask? There are a lot of online services you can use, but they charge a monthly fee. Some offer trials, but if you make a change to your site (which you should be doing regularly to keep your site fresh), you’ll want the subscription.
Avoid blah, blah, blah content — This means overkill. Sacrificing quality for quantity. Psssssst. You needn’t have a lot of words on your website in order to get your message across. Instead, make it clear through your website messages that you specialize in one type of business, product or service. Determine your niche and become the go-to business for that niche. As an example, on my website, I tell the web visitor exactly why my business sets itself apart from the rest of the pack. Back it up with some professional and relevant images. Make it simple.
Don’t look like your competitors— Why would you want to look like everyone else? What’s so great about vanilla anyway? Create your own message, stand out among the crowd and show people your unique aspects. Vanilla ice cream without adding all the accoutrements to it is just plain booooorrrring.
Don’t build it, and wait for people to come to your site —Like I say, “Anyone can build a website.” Getting traffic to your site is a different matter. Online advertising, social media, blogging and inbound linking are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to SEO. It also takes time to build credibility in search engine keyword results. It certainly doesn’t happen overnight and will take some proactive measures on your part. You can also join affiliate programs, send emails, newsletters, and partner with other sites and businesses to find traffic-sharing opportunities.
Guess who can help you with all that? That’s right, Pegleg Web Designs! When you shake your head no and build your own site, let me know how that works out for you in about six months time. No traffic? Give us a call – we’ll help you out!