It takes a lot of work and knowledge to create and maintain an effective website. You want your target market to be able to discover your company when they're looking for services or products, and you want your content, interactive material, and design to keep them engaged. You also need to ensure that the website you develop is inexpensive and will provide a high return on investment.
WordPress is a user-friendly content management system (CMS) that helps you to design, update, and manage your website. You'll be able to create a site that compels your target audience to not only visit but also read through your material, view videos, and learns about your brand while simultaneously encouraging them to take action.
WordPress is the most popular content management system on the internet, with 34% of all websites using it. Furthermore: In the CMS industry, WordPress has a 60.8% market share.
With statistics like these, you can imagine there's something thrilling you won't want to miss. Take a look at some of WordPress' unrivaled characteristics and advantages:
1. WordPress is Free and Open-Source
You can download and use WordPress without having to pay a dime. The software is also open-source, which means that the source code is available for anyone to study, modify, and distribute as they wish.
Open-source projects are developed by collaborative networks of volunteers who work together on a project they believe in. This type of development results in some of the most innovative and useful code.
As a business owner, you'll be happy to know that there is no licensing fee associated with WordPress. You can also avoid expensive web development fees by using the self-hosted version of WordPress.
All you need to do is purchase a domain name and hosting plan, and you can then install WordPress on your server.
This will give you full control over your website and allow you to implement any features or functionality you want.
2. You Can Easily Edit and Update The Content
One of the main advantages of WordPress is that it's very easy for you to edit, add, or fix common web design mistakes without having to touch a single line of code.
If you want to be able to update their website content yourself, WordPress is the perfect solution. All you need to do is log in, and you can add, edit, or delete content without having to know any programming languages.
This is a huge time-saver for you because you won't have to contact your developer every time you want to make small changes to your website.
It's also a great solution for small businesses that don't have the budget to hire a web developer to make major changes.
3. There are Thousands of Plugins
One of the advantages of using an open-source platform is that a global community of developers creates themes and plugins that are available for anyone to use. This means that you don't have to start from scratch when building your site or adding features; someone else has probably already created something that you can use.
Thousands of themes and 54,000+ plugins are available on the WordPress plugin repository. And if you can't find what you're looking for there, many professional WordPress developers create custom solutions for their clients.
You can find a plugin for almost anything you want to add to your website, from contact forms and social media integration to eCommerce functionality and SEO optimization. No matter what features or functionality you want on your site, there's probably a WordPress plugin for it.
4. It Enables Your Website to Scale
As your business grows, your website will need to grow with it. WordPress is a scalable platform that can easily be expanded to accommodate your changing needs.
Adding new features or functionalities to your site is as simple as installing a plugin or adding a custom code snippet. If you need to scale up your website to accommodate more traffic, WordPress can handle it.
Several of the world's largest companies use WordPress, including The New York Times, BBC America, and MTV News. WordPress is also used by many small businesses and individual bloggers.
No matter how large or small your website is, WordPress can handle it.
This scalability makes WordPress a great solution for businesses that are just starting out as well as those that are already established.
5. It's Constantly Updated With New Features and Security Updates
WordPress is always being updated with new features and security updates. These updates are released regularly, and you can easily install them with a single click.
This is important because it ensures that your website is always up-to-date and secure against the latest threats. It also makes sure that your website will continue to work properly as WordPress evolves.
You can rest assured that your website is in good hands when you use WordPress. The development team is constantly working to improve the platform and make sure it's secure against the latest threats.
Plus, if you ever have any questions or need help, there's a large community of WordPress developers and users who are always happy to help.
Whether you're just starting out or you're already established, WordPress can help you create a website that meets your needs.
So if you're looking for a platform that is easy to use, scalable, and always up-to-date, WordPress is the perfect solution for you.
Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you create a WordPress website that will help you overcome your biggest challenges and achieve your goals online.
It's a question that clients ask all the time: how long does it take to build a website?
Here's the short answer:
2 - 4 months for most small business websites
4 - 6 months for most eCommerce websites
Here's a realistic answer: It depends.
But we wanted to provide an overview of the typical website development process, so you have a better idea of what to expect.
In this blog post, we'll discuss the different phases of website development and how long each process typically takes.
We'll also give you some tips on how to shorten the duration of your own website project.
Website Development: Run-Through
Most businesses choose to outsource the design and development of their websites to professional web design companies or freelancers to guarantee that the site is secure and user-friendly.
Many websites appear to be simple from the outside: a few menus, a few buttons, some links and pictures, and you're finished.
Typically, there are 5 steps to building a website:
Discovery and goal setting
Creating a solid game plan
Design mockups and feedback
Review and revision
Let's look at each of these phases in more depth, as well as how long they typically take.
Discovery and Goal Setting (1 - 2 weeks)
The first step in any website development project is to set out the goals and objectives of the website.
This is done through a discovery process that includes interviews, analysis, or other research methods with the key stakeholders of the website.
The discovery process helps to answer important questions such as:
Who is the target audience?
Who are your competitors?
What are the website's main goals?
How do you plan to drive traffic to the website?
What features and functionality are required?
After the discovery process is complete, the web design team will have a better understanding of the project requirements and can begin to create a plan.
You can expect this process to take anywhere from one week to two weeks.
Tip: The discovery process is an important step in the website development process, but it can also be one of the most time-consuming.
To save time, try to provide as much information as possible upfront and be available to answer any questions that the web design team may have.
Creating a Solid Game Plan (1 - 2 weeks)
After the discovery and goal-setting phase, it's time to start putting together a solid game plan.
This includes nailing down the project requirements, functionalities, content, design direction, target audience, user experience flow, and more.
All of this information is used to create a detailed project plan that will be used as a roadmap for the entire website development process.
You'll also set realistic expectations for what can be accomplished within the budget and timeline.
Expect this phase to take one to two weeks, as you communicate via email with your developer about the best course of action.
Tip: Creating a detailed project plan upfront can help to save time and money in the long run.
Make sure to communicate your vision clearly and be available to answer any questions that may come up.
Design Mockups and Feedback (2 - 3 weeks)
After the project plan is complete, it's time to start working on the design mockups.
These mockups are a very basic version of the finished website product and provide a sense of where things like text, images, and buttons will appear on your website along with the general scale of these elements.
You'll want a mockup of each page if you're hiring a developer to build your homepage, about us page, service pages, and product pages.
Once the mockups are complete, you'll need to gather feedback from the stakeholders and make revisions as needed.
This feedback loop can take a few days or even a week or two to complete, depending on how many revisions are required.
Tip: Try to provide clear and concise feedback as much as possible so that the revisions can be made quickly and efficiently.
Taking the time to get the design right is the best way to avoid common web design mistakes and major changes later on.
Responsive Development (3 - 4 weeks)
The most important stage of website development, in terms of functionality, is the responsive development phase.
This is where your developer takes the approved mockups and turns them into a fully functioning website that includes all of the content you've approved.
The developer will consider how users will interact with the website and create a responsive website ( meaning it will look good and function as it should on desktop, tablet, and mobile devices).
Depending on the size and complexity of your website, this phase may take three to four weeks — or even longer if problems arise.
You can expect frequent interactions from your developer during this period, as he or she should be keeping you informed on the project's status and providing screenshots of how things are progressing.
If something doesn't appear to be progressing as planned or isn't looking like the mockup, bring it to their attention.
Although this may cause minor delays, it's preferable to taking your entire site offline after it goes live because the problem wasn't addressed initially.
Tip: Pay attention to how your website looks and functions on all devices. If something doesn't look or work right, don't hesitate to reach out to your developer.
Catching problems early on will save time (and money) in the long run.
Review and Revision (1 - 2 weeks)
After the website has been built, it's time for you and your team to take a look at the final product.
This is where you'll evaluate how well the website meets the goals that were set during the discovery process and make any necessary revisions.
In this stage, you'll also test how easy it is to use the site and identify any areas that need improvement.
Some changes, such as font size or color choice, can be easily modified before your site goes live while others may require more significant changes that could cause delays.
The revision process can take anywhere from one week to two weeks, depending on how many changes need to be made.
Tip: Be thorough during the review process and identify all areas that need to be revised. The more revisions that are required, the longer it will take to launch your website.
Creating a Website Yourself (DIY)
If you have a limited budget or simply can't afford to wait several months for your website, you may be tempted to create it yourself.
While there are some great DIY website builders out there, such as Wix and Squarespace, they do have their limitations.
For example, unless you're a web developer yourself, you won't be able to create a truly custom website using these tools.
And while they may offer templates that look professional, they aren't always optimized for SEO (search engine optimization) or conversion rate optimization (CRO), which means your site may not rank as high in search results or perform as well as it could.
Having said that, using DIY website builders can significantly cut your website costs and time to several weeks.
Asking how much a business website costs is somewhat similar to asking:
"How much does it cost to build a home from the ground up?"
It is difficult to give an estimate without asking a few questions to find out what goals a business wants to achieve by building a website. A web designer or an agency needs to know how big the project will be and what features are required.
For example, if you're a small business owner, you might only need a Homepage, About page, Services page, Contact page, and Blog.
But if you're an eCommerce store owner, you might need a Homepage, Shop page, Product page, Cart Page, Checkout Page, and so on.
What affects the prices of each page?
The cost of individual pages can be affected by SEO (search engine optimization), the amount of content, and the level of customization.
SEO: If you want a specific page to appear on the first page of the search results, this will add to the cost.
Amount of Content: If you have a lot of content on each page, it will take longer to write, create and design each page. This includes copywriting, photos, videos, etc.
Level of Customization: If you need a lot of customizations, such as an eCommerce store, it will take longer to create and design each page, which will increase the cost.
In most circumstances, web designers and agencies adjust their prices as follows:
1 to 10 pages: $1,000 to $2,000
10 to 50 pages: $2,000 to $3,000
50 to 150 pages: $3,000 to $6,500
150 to 250 pages: $6,500 to $10,000
Your web design professionals will help your company in determining how many pages are required for your website, whether you're redesigning it or launching a fresh one. Web Designers can create an easy-to-use and effective site layout if they know how many pages the site has beforehand.
Functionalities ($0 - $2,000+)
Functionalities are like the stairs, windows, and doors of your home. They are what makes your website accessible and easy to navigate for your visitors.
Some examples of common website functionalities are:
Social media integration
What affects the prices of functionalities?
The cost of these functionalities will depend on how complex they are and whether the freelancer or an agency needs to hire someone to develop them for you.
For most websites that use CMS (Content Management System) such as WordPress, plugins like WPForms and LiveChat are available to easily add these functionalities to your website.
However, if you need more complex functionality, such as an online booking system without using third-party software, this will require custom development and will be much more expensive.
Most companies with small websites pay $0 - $500 for simple functionalities and $500 - $2000+ for complex functionalities.
Web Design or Styling ($1,000 - $15,000)
The styling or design of your website is like the exterior and interior decoration of your home. It's what makes your website visually appealing and how visitors will perceive your business.
Web design and its common misconception
A common misconception is that the term "web design" is used to represent both the appearance of the site's visuals and the development.
In reality, web design refers to your site's aesthetics (UI Design) but also the usability (UX Design) as well.
As a result, it's one of the most costly and influential website cost factors, having an immediate influence on how well your site performs.
Google and other search engines are also concerned with the functionality, performance, and appearance of your website.
They want to give users relevant results and a pleasant online experience, so if you have an ineffective or unusable website that appears at the top of search engine results, they will not show it.
What affects the prices of web design?
The cost of web design will depend on how much work is required to make your website look the way you want it.
In most situations, the less complicated the design, the lower the cost. This does not mean that businesses should go with a simple, spare design. Instead, your company should think about its target audience and build a website that meets consumer expectations for your business and products.
For example, if your company sells high-end products, your website will need to look luxurious and reflect that through its design. Otherwise, you'll fall short, causing you to lose revenue.
Responsive Design ($1,000 - $25,000)
Responsive development or design is like the construction phase of your home. This is where your website is built and made to function how you want it.
What is responsive design?
Responsive development is the process of making a website visible and easy to use on any device, whether it's a desktop computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone.
Why responsive design matters
With over half of the world's Internet traffic coming from mobile devices, it's obvious that people are changing the way they browse websites. As a result, companies must invest in responsive web design.
If you don't use responsive design, it will have a significant influence on the performance of your website — undoing any gains you made with a well-designed website. Consider, for example, that more than 65% of customers are more likely to make a purchase from a company with a mobile-friendly website.
What affects the cost of responsive design
There are two ways business owners and companies might approach responsive web design:
Responsive design: A mobile-friendly website that adapts to a user's device, whether it's a laptop, tablet, PC, or smartphone. This design option can set you back around $1,000.
Separate mobile site: Your company may add a mobile version of your site to support tablet and mobile users, as well as create a mobile version of your website. However, having an independent mobile site costs between $5,000 and $25,000.
In most cases, responsive design is the most cost-effective method for most businesses.
Website Marketing ($950~$12,000 / month)
You've created a fantastic website, now it's time to let your audience know about it.
What is website marketing?
Website marketing is the process of driving traffic to your site and converting that traffic into customers or sales.
It's one of the most important investments you can make for your business, as it ensures that people who are looking for services/products on Google and social media can find you.
Why you need website marketing
Your website is the foundation of your digital marketing efforts. It's where you'll generate leads, close deals, and grow your business.
If you're not marketing your website, you're missing out on a huge opportunity to reach new customers and grow your business.
What affects the website marketing cost?
The cost of your website marketing will be affected by the size of your target market, how much your competitors are spending, and the keywords you're targeting.
For example, if you're a small business targeting a local market, you can get by with a smaller budget than if you were a national company targeting a larger audience.
10 Most Common Web Design Mistakes to Avoid in 2022
10 Most Common Web Design Mistakes to Avoid in 2022
The last thing you want after launching your new website is to find out you made costly website mistakes that demand a significant amount of time and resources to fix them.
Even worse, finding out about these mistakes months (or years) down the road, realizing it could have been hurting your brand online and causing you to lose potential customers to your competitors.
Many of them are made by businesses that create their website to save money and get more control over the project. Unfortunately, there are spoken and unspoken "rules" that web designers and agencies follow. People frequently do not follow these guidelines, which results in websites that are less-than-ideal
An effective website should:
provide a user-friendly experience
generate a constant flow of leads
communicate your value and sell for you
In this in-depth guide, I'll show you the 10 most common web design mistakes to avoid in 2022, what they mean for your business, and practical ways to fix them quickly with ease.
Before starting a new website project (or redesigning) you must ask yourself these essential questions:
By having clear and realistic answers to the questions above, you can formulate a digital marketing strategy to avoid future website mistakes before launching your new website.
1. A Lack of Clear Brand Messaging
This mistake is by far the highest priority to focus on when avoiding web design mistakes in 2022.
What is Brand Messaging?
Brand Messaging is the way your brand communicates its unique value proposition and personality via verbal and nonverbal marketing. It's what inspires and motivates your prospects to buy your services or product. It's how your customers can connect with your brand.
What this means for your business
When you have a clear understanding of who your target audience is and what they want, it allows you to focus on those people specifically with laser precision in both your web design and digital marketing strategy.
A lot of small business brands imitate the major corporations in their industry and try to sell everything to everyone.
The result is a website (and brand) that is lost in the mix and doesn't resonate with their ideal prospects.
How you can fix it
To stand out and differentiate yourself from the competition, you have to utilize storytelling.
Storytelling is a marketing narrative of creating communication that's compelling to your target audience and connects with them on an emotional level.
Here are a couple of questions you can consider:
Define your target audience - Who are they? What are they struggling with? What keeps them up at night?
What is your Unique Selling Proposition (USP)? What makes your brand different from your competitors? Why should people care?
What's the main plot of your story? (The problem, the solution, and the transformation)
And I want to share with you the most important advice on this:
Your website content must cater to the motivations and needs of the target audience, not your accomplishments or agenda.
Your brand messaging has to be framed in a way to get your prospects to take action on your website and realize the value you provide.
Refrain from using headlines and texts that directly talk about your services or product. Instead, focus on their pain points and provide a solution to their specific problem.
The lack of clear call-to-action (CTA) buttons is one of the biggest web design mistakes made by businesses of all sizes.
According to Go-Globe, "53% of websites lack a clear call-to-action button that takes users 3 seconds or less to see." This is probably due to the lack of contrast between the texts and the background color shown in Fig 1.
As online users tend to scan through texts and scroll fairly quickly, it is critical that your primary call to action visibly stands out on your website.
How you can fix it
The key to a persuasive call to action is to be clear and concise with your message. Try not to get too creative by sacrificing clarity.
Keep the focus on your target audience. Consider using the "you" and "your" pronouns when applicable.
Below are some of the most common action verbs broken down by intention. Pair them with the offering of your business and pronouns if you can.
Buy, View, Shop, Reserve, Order, Pick, Save, Add to Cart
Sign Up, Get Started, Try, Subscribe,
Support, Volunteer, Adopt, Donate, Commit, Give,
Newsletter or community
Sign Up, Join, Subscribe, Refer,
Take advantage of, Grab, Get, Claim, Download,
Continue, See How, Start, Check it Out, See More, Learn More, Find Out, Click here, Swipe Up,
For example: "Reserve your seat" instead of "Reserve a seat".
Tip: There should be enough information beforehand so that visitors understand what they will gain from taking action and what information they must provide. Give them enough breathing room on your page before the CTA button appears.
Make sure your call to action button or links have enough color contrast and matches your brand and fit well within the interface.
Use enough margin (external spacing around the button) and padding (internal spacing).
3. Too Much Information
Did you know users spend an average of 5.59 seconds looking at a website's content? (Sweor)
What this means for your business
If your visitors can't find what they are looking for within a matter of seconds, they will leave. And 70% of them won't be coming back.
Upon landing on your website, your visitors should be able to figure out these 4 questions in seconds:
What you do
Who you do it for
What's in it for them
What action you want them to take
To show you a good example of what NOT to do, take a look at the landing page below.
The amount of information displayed can easily confuse the visitors and cause them to leave your website for an alternative: Your competitors.
While we may think that more is better, when it comes to website content, less is more for the consumers.
How you can fix it
Consider your website's homepage to be a magazine cover: Introduce the purpose and target audience early and frequently, and emphasize crucial elements in large, bold, straightforward headlines:
List the benefits in short concise sentences with bullet points and break up large blocks of text.
Create an easy-to-navigate layout by giving enough breathing space between sections and texts.
Make it easy for them to find the information they need, displaying a call to action where it's most visible.
4. Ignoring SEO
Having a weak SEO score or ignoring your SEO strategy completely is another common web design mistakes seen in small business websites.
What is SEO?
SEO (search engine optimization) is the practice of optimizing a website to rank higher in search engine results. When done correctly, SEO can help a website achieve its business goals by increasing traffic and visibility in search engines.
Research conducted by Hubspot found that 75% of Internet users never scroll past the first page of search results and at least 71% of traffic comes from the first page.
What this means for your business
If your website is not optimized for SEO, your customers are likely to find your website when they search for keywords related to your business. As a result, you could be missing out on valuable leads and sales.
How you can fix it
Many different factors contribute to a website's SEO score, but here are a few of the most effective tactics:
Start a blog (Post high-quality content)
Quality content that is posted regularly is seen as a highly valuable SEO ranking factor by search engines.
Blogging is about building relationships—becoming the trusted source to your target audience rather than just a salesperson. It is also the only real way for a small business to affordably reach the consciousness of a prospect.
Regularly blogging educational, valuable content is hard work and it takes time, but the time invested will, in turn, gain the trust of your prospects.
Always plan your content first and pick a topic that's relevant to your business. The posts should be at least 1,000 words or longer if you're providing actionable insights.
Optimize for Long-tail Keywords
More and more online users are using long-tail keywords to search for more detailed and specific answers.
By targeting long-tail keywords, you'll find they are much easier to rank for than short ones and attract more relevant leads.
Here's an example:
Instead of ranking for "dentist in Toronto", try "how much is a dentist in Toronto".
That consumer is already looking for something specific: pricing & location. A piece of valuable information that you can provide to form a relationship with your brand.
Another way to find ideas for your long-tail keyword is to input short keywords (also known as "head term") into Google:
Consider the following searches that users use while looking for information about "dentist in Toronto." After conducting a Google search, you can find these near the bottom of the page.
Leverage Social Media
If there's one thing you can do to compete against large corporations, is your ability to connect with your customers on a personal level.
Social media is a great place to start and grow relationships that can later turn into something commercial. Being able to gauge customer emotions toward your business and engaging with customers who praise or complain in a public forum is one of the most valuable ways to strengthen your brand identity.
Another advantage of this is social proof. Being approachable, responding to criticism or praise, and engaging with customers create social proof and give prospects and customers the impression that they are dealing with people rather than a faceless corporation.
You can start by sharing blog posts on social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.
Understanding how people interact with your site helps you make data-driven decisions on where to focus your time and energy to get the best ROI.
The best part is, that measuring your digital marketing efforts is not difficult and you don't need a data scientist to do it.
How you can fix it
You can install Google Analytics on your site and start tracking your performance. It's a free tool that provides you with valuable insights on website traffic, conversions, user behaviors, and much more.
If your website runs on WordPress, consider these free plugins that connect your site directly to Google Analytics:
A recent study by Digital showed that 1 in 2 visitors abandon a website that takes more than 6 seconds to load.
What this means for your business
Online users are impatient and they want information fast. If your website can't meet their standard, they will leave for a better alternative.
This is especially true for mobile users as 53% of mobile site visitors will leave a page if it takes longer than three seconds to load (Google).
As I have mentioned the importance of having a strong SEO earlier, your website's loading time is a factor that strongly affects your search engine rankings.
How you can fix it
Although this is a technical mistake that requires collaboration with your web developer, you can diagnose the problems with free tools such as GTMetrix and Google Page Insights.
Make sure your web developer or agency has these best practices in mind should you choose to work with them:
Choosing a speed-focused web host
Using a content delivery network (CDN)
Embedding videos instead of uploading them on the site
Uninstalling any unnecessary plugins
Enabling cache browsing
7. Confusing Navigation
A survey conducted by Clutch revealed that 94% of users value easy navigation more than anything on a website.
An easy-to-navigate website allows users to find the information they need much faster. This includes having a clear menu structure and the ability to quickly and efficiently navigate between pages.
What this means for your business
Easy navigation features should be your top priority when creating or redesigning a website. By adding simple, responsive navigation toolbars and menus, you can create an intuitive user experience and increase your web traffic and conversions.
How you can fix it
Overloading the navigation with too many options will only create confusion. Consumers are less likely to make a decision if confronted with numerous alternatives. To avoid this, group the content in your navigation. Aim for 3~5 to choose from at a time.
This is important for sites with a lot of pages. You don't want your users to restart their ten-minute journey just to see the page they just viewed.
Add a Search Option
A great choice for content-heavy websites. It's easy to add, and it may help your visitors in finding that one page they remember seeing the week before but can't seem to find now.
8. Not Designing for Mobile-Devices
Mobile devices have become the new standard for internet access in 2022.
With over 60% of global website traffic coming from mobile phones (Statista), your design must be able to adapt and maintain an appropriate user interface (UI) to reach as many prospects as possible.
Take a look at the following data from Google Mobile Playbook:
67% of users say they are more likely to buy a product from a mobile-friendly website.
57% of users say they will not recommend a business with a badly designed mobile site.
40% of users have gone to a competitor's website after a poor mobile experience.
What this means for your business
If you're not designing a responsive website (meaning it looks good on all devices) that can be easily viewed and navigated on all devices, you're missing out on a large portion of potential customers.
You have to prioritize creating a mobile-friendly experience for them if you want to stay ahead of your competitors.
How you can fix it
Before you contact your web developer/agency, use Google's Mobile-Friendly Test to check if your website has a responsive web design. If the test fails, it's highly recommended that you contact your developer.
If you're using WordPress, there are many mobile-friendly themes that you can use to improve your site's responsiveness.
Many plugins can help with this, such as WP Touch (free version) and WPTouch Pro.
Take a look at these mobile-friendly websites above on your smartphone and compare them on your desktop. You'll notice how it's optimized for easy navigation and user experience. From left to right: Nationwide, PDS, and Strava.
9. Hidden Contact Info
Often and strangely enough, website owners do not make their phone number prominent in the header or footer — or on a dedicated contact page.
What this means for your business
If your visitors have to put an effort to search for the contact info, they will likely get frustrated and leave.
By making it easy for visitors to contact you, you're increasing the chances of converting them into leads and customers.
How you can fix it
Place a clear call to action in the header with the phone number:
Call (700) 700-0000
Get a quote now at (700) 700-0000
The call to action button should dial and make a call when clicked.
It is recommended that you create a dedicated contact page with all your relevant information so that your visitors can easily contact you from every page.
Consider adding different ways to get in touch with you as possible – by phone, email, contact form submission…and even via your social media account.
To step it up further, you can add a live chat widget to offer instant support.
10. Low Quality or Irrelevant Images
A study by David Ogilvy, "The Father of Advertising", found that an image without any relationship to the text may reduce readership and thus hurt sales as consumers are less likely to want to buy something if there's no relevance.
What this means for your business
If you're using images that are irrelevant or of low quality, it will not only turn off your visitors but also give them the impression that your business is unprofessional.
The use of high-quality visuals can help you build trust with your audience, improve conversions, and boost engagement.
How you can fix it
Use High-Resolution Pictures
If you can't find a hi-res image for your content, look for an illustration to take the place of the photograph. This will add some character to your brand.
Optimize and compress Images
Learn effective image optimization techniques to improve both loading speeds and picture quality. This will increase your page loading times mentioned earlier.
These quick and easy solutions to fix some of the most common web design mistakes will help you attract new customers and elevate your brand online. When you decide to build a new website for your business, keep the following best practices in mind:
Make your brand messaging clear and concise to the correct audience.
Use a clear call to action that compels them to take action.
Refrain from putting out too much information.
Publish a high-quality blog regularly, Aim for long-tail keywords, and share it on social media.
Measure website performance by having Google Analytics installed.
Optimize page load times to keep visitors engaged.
Create an easy-to-navigate website for users by organizing menus and using breadcrumbs.
Design your website for a mobile-friendly experience.
Display your contact information where it can easily be seen.
Use high-quality images that are relevant to your message.
Being a website/business owner is no easy task. You have data to measure, a website to manage, and content to regularly update.
Working together with a professional web designer will make this work easy and they will help you overcome your biggest challenges— whether that's branding or generating more qualified leads for your business. Above all, they will ensure your website is not making costly mistakes.
Optimizing your website for quick browsing and searching not only attracts visitors but also encourages them to explore and return for future use. User-friendly navigation, fast loading rates, and functional links make your website appear more professional and raise the likelihood of customer satisfaction.
Analyzing your website can assist you in determining which parts of optimization are successful and where you might benefit from updates or changes. Analyzing your competitors' websites may also help you uncover content and keywords to target, investigate ways to improve the browsing experience, and adapt ideas to make your site stand out and lead to more conversions.
What is a Website Analysis?
If you own a website, it's important to know what's going on behind the scenes.
Website analysis is the process of examining all aspects of a website to improve its performance.
This includes website speed, website design, website structure, and website SEO (search engine optimization).
Why You Need a Website Analysis
By understanding how your website is performing and making changes based on data, you can create a website that is optimized for maximum lead generation and conversion. Here are some insights that a website analysis can provide for you:
A greater understanding of your website visitors - how they behave on your website and what they are looking for.
Technical issues that are hindering your search rankings - slow load times, broken links, outdated content/information, and common web design mistakes.
Benchmarking against competitor websites - see what they are doing & what you can do better.
Conversion rate optimization - changes you can make or implement on your website design/structure to create a better user experience.
4 Important Types of Website Analysis
Four main types of website analysis help you identify your website's functions, performance, and how users interact with it.
1. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Even if your website looks appealing with all the right images and sales copy, your potential customers won't be able to find it easily if you neglected your SEO strategy.
This type of analysis looks at how well your website ranks in search engines such as Google and Bing. It's important to ensure that your website appears as high up in the results as possible so that potential customers can easily find you. Several factors contribute to SEO, including:
Search Engine Ranking: This analysis is used to determine where your website ranks in search engine results pages (SERPs) for a particular keyword. This can be useful in several ways. For example, if you want to see how your website ranks for a particular keyword in different locations or from different devices. Popular analytics tools used for this are Semrush and Ahrefs.
On-page SEO: This is used to identify common technical issues on your website that might be affecting your rankings on SERPs. These can include broken links, improper title tags, meta descriptions, alt tags on images, and so on. You can use free tools such as Google Analytics and Screaming Frog to find these results.
Backlink Audit: This is used to identify any harmful or low-quality links that might be pointing to your website. This can help you avoid penalties from Google's Penguin algorithm and compare your backlink profiles to your competitors. There are several tools you can use for this, including Moz's Link Explorer and Majestic's Site Explorer.
The next type of analysis looks at the traffic that's coming to your website. This can help you get an understanding of the number of visitors to your website, and where they come from, including their geographic location and their device type.
By understanding your website's traffic, you can identify where the majority of your marketing efforts should go to.
One of the best tools for tracking your traffic and gathering data about what they do on your website is Google Analytics.
Did you know that even a 2-second delay in load time results in abandonment rates of up to 87%?
The speed of your website is important for two reasons: first, because it directly affects the user experience, and second, because search engines take it into account when ranking websites. Learning about which elements are slowing down your website -such as unoptimized images, code bloats, and inefficient hosting -can help you make improvements. Here are some free tools to help you identify elements that are slowing down your website:
User experience is all about how easy it is for visitors to use your website, find the information they need, and complete the desired action.
Unlike other types of website analytics listed above, UX Analysis focuses on human preference and behavior rather than metrics and data. This also means that it can only be provided by users themselves.
By using behavioral analytic tools like Heatmaps and screen recording, you can analyze your visitor's behavior on your website and make improvements for more engagement.
What should I look for in the analysis of competitors' websites?
While there are lots of metrics you can review about your competitor's website, these 3 common factors should almost always be a priority:
Organic Traffic: If you rely on organic traffic to bring visitors to your website, knowing the SEO data and search engine rankings for your competitors' content and keywords might help you figure out how to change your keywords and rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs).
Pay Per Click (PPC) Advertising: If you use PPC Ads, you can check how your competitors are utilizing paid traffic. You can check on areas such as the types of ads they make, where they feature those ads, and how each one is received by users.
Customer Demographics: By looking at the markets targeted by your competitors, you can find niche markets that are under-served or help you find a bigger market that you haven't thought of targeting before.
What makes a great website analysis?
First and foremost, make sure that the website analysis you receive is comprehensive and easy to understand. There should be no jargon or technical terms that you don't understand. The website analysis should also be concise and to the point.
Next, you should make sure that the website analysis covers all of the important aspects of your website mentioned previously in the article. In addition, it should include your website's design, content, navigation, and overall effectiveness of the sales copy.
Finally, make sure that the website analysis provides actionable insights that you can use to improve your website. The best website analyses are those that not only identify problems but also provide solutions.
A website analysis is a great way to get started on improving your website. It can help you understand what’s working and what isn’t, so you can make the necessary changes that will grow your business online.
If you need assistance getting started or want someone to take a look at your website and give you an in-depth website analysis report, Makko Digital is more than happy to help.
6 Steps To Create Your Own Effective Website Sales Plan
6 Steps To Create Your Own Effective Website Sales Plan
Are you looking to increase sales on your website? If so, you need an effective website sales plan. Without a solid strategy in place, it can be difficult to achieve your desired results.
This step-by-step guide will help you understand how to create your own effective website sales plan. It breaks down what I recommend to keep in mind as you write copy on a website. Cover these 6 questions the buyer will have in this order, and they “naturally” will be inclined to buy.
There are a lot of different ways to sell, but you should base it on one approach you know will work. It might seem simple, but this approach pushes a lot of the unconscious buttons that need to be pressed when someone is making a buying decision and does it in the right order.
Use these six steps of selling to give your website a great selling framework.
The 6 steps are...
Step 1: Is this the perfect solution to my specific problem? (Gather attention.)
The biggest reason why people don’t buy is that they don’t think the product is the EXACT solution that they need.
The more specific you can get in terms of what the product does and who it does it for, the more you’re going to get a YES.
For example, if someone has high blood pressure, and you’re selling a heart product, then it doesn’t have much appeal compared to a solution that specifically says: "hey, our product will help with high blood pressure that won’t go down”.
This is why targeting a specific audience makes a huge difference. People are impatient and care about themselves first and foremost. If they can't figure out what it is that you are selling within SECONDS of landing on the page, the opportunity is lost.
You should always start a new website project by spending some time answering these 3 questions:
What exactly is the product/service this website is selling?
Who is going to buy this product/service? (Hint: these are your client's clients, and you are building a website for them, not for your client)
With what problem specifically are you going to help them?
Step 2: What makes this solution better, more unique, and exciting than other solutions? (Present benefits.)
People have tried a lot of solutions before, and have been disappointed.
They’re always looking for something better. We live in a society where we’re always looking for the next best thing, so if you can answer this question and SHOW them why it’s better, it WOWS the customer.
People are bored with normal products that are out there, so you have to position your service/ product as something new/different/exciting/fresh.
This is where you present the benefits of the solution, and position it in an exciting way.
To step it up even further, think for a moment about what transformations are the product/service enabling to happen.
For example: "from not having control over your spending to controlling how you spend money", "from feeling uncomfortable inviting guests, to hosting parties every weekend because you feel proud of how your house is looking like", etc. The more powerful and deeper the transformation, the better.
Step 3: How can I be sure it’s going to work for me? (Show proof.)
Asked differently: "why does it work and what's the proof that is it going to work for me?"
People are nervous, skeptical, and distrustful. They’ve been cheated in the past with other products and have felt like fools. They don’t want to feel scammed again.
If you can prove to your prospects why they don’t need to feel nervous/skeptical and show them WHY it works, then you’re a lot closer to a YES. Provide them with a very healthy dose of proof. Everything else held equal, proof is what seals the deal.
This is where you build trust and position the business as an authority in their niche:
Where does this business have the most credibility?
Where does it have the most experience?
If the business worked with 1,000s of customers across 3 different continents, or they were featured in a respectable magazine, or they spent 1 million dollars to come up with a new formula for the face cream, tell the world about it.
Step 4: How does it work? What's the process? (Justify buying decision.)
People need to justify their buying decision with some logic; it’s a natural human response.
They need to know how the benefits can be realized. They justify their buying decisions with some logic. If you can explain WHY all of the benefits you discussed CAN and WILL happen, you’ve given the prospect a ton of comfort and security.
It can be as simple as walking them through the process. For a dietician, it could look like this:
"The first step is to book a consultation with me, then I will provide you with a bespoke meal plan, and check in with you weekly to make sure you are on track."
Step 5: What are other people saying about it? (Use social proof.)
Third-party verification and validation. It’s the final dose of logic, comfort, and security.
It gives people that sense of, “Wow, if these other people who are just like me are getting amazing results, then so can I”. It gives them that final nudge over the finish line.
Use case studies, and testimonials, embed Trustpilot reviews and add screenshots of reviews from social media profiles.
Hint: it is better to have a few strong reviews than dozens of weak, fake-sounding testimonials. Most people are exceptionally good at detecting fake positive reviews, so don't be tempted to use them.
If your client doesn't have any, this is a great opportunity to add value–offer them you will reach out to a few best customers yourself, or set up a Trustpilot account for them and a testimonial-gathering system. This can be as simple as creating a Typeform feedback form and setting up an auto-responder.
Step 6: How can I order it? (Tell them what to do.)
This is where you present your irresistible offer. Give the prospect one great deal and a good reason to act:
Both have their own set of pros and cons, depending on your budget, complexities involved, and time constraints.
So, should you build a website yourself? Or hire a professional? Let's discuss the advantages and disadvantages of both methods so that you can make an informed decision about which one is right for your type of business.
Pros of Building a Website Yourself (aka DIY)
1. You save money...at least for the short term.
Building a website yourself can help you save hundreds and potentially thousands of dollars.
With free website builders that require no coding, developing a website by yourself is easier than ever now.
Popular website builders like Wix and Squarespace start from as low as $15/month, making them an ideal choice if you are just starting and you're on a tight budget.
2. You have 100% control.
If you like to be involved in the process of web design as well as taking it at your own pace, building it yourself can give you enjoyment and less stress, which is great!
By working at your own pace, you have the power to decide what's a priority. You get to make the choices immediately with no task turnarounds.
3. You know it all.
As the saying goes, business owners know their business more than anyone.
You know your target audience, how you attract them, what they want/don't want, and what will compel them to take action.
When you make a website yourself, you eliminate the process of explaining your business to freelancers and agencies. This can take days and possibly weeks if you are working with bigger agencies.
The Cons of Building a Website Yourself
1. It may cost you more...in the long run.
While you may be able to save money in the short term by building it yourself, the long-term costs of having an unprofessional website could be much higher.
Your website is often the first impression potential customers have of your business. A study has shown that more than 75% of your online presence's credibility comes from the quality of your website's design (Stanford).
A website with the wrong message, poor design, or difficult navigation will not only drive potential customers away but also give your business a bad reputation. And once they click the backward button, you lose them to your competitors.
Hiring them to design a professional website may cost more upfront, but it will save you money in the long run by ensuring that you have a professional website that attracts the "right" prospects and converts them into customers.
2. It's time-consuming.
Building a website, no matter what builder you use, can be time-consuming.
This is because when you are first starting, there's a steep learning curve to get used to the interface of the builder. They often appear to be easy to use but when it comes to resizing images, responsiveness to mobile devices, and changing sections, they can become a painstaking process.
And if you want to add new features or functionality down the road, that can also take additional time...time that you may not have if you're running a business by yourself. And you know as a business owner that time = money.
3. Limitations on customization and scalability.
Website builders usually have limitations in terms of design customization and scalability. They come with "customizable themes" that thousands of other businesses like yours are using to quickly build their websites.
This can be a problem if you want your website to stand out from the competition or if you have specific design and technical requirements that need to be met.
And website builders do not fully integrate SEO (Search Engine Optimization) or lead generation into the process. They don't tell you how to nurture your website to stay on top of Google's radar or create irresistible offers to capture their email addresses. These elements are critical to scaling your website.
Pros of Hiring a Professional
1. They are...pros.
When you hire a website design company or a freelancer, they bring their years of experience and expertise to the table. And the more they specialize in a particular niche, the better job they will do.
They know what works, what doesn't, the best practices, and what they need from you. They know how to take your vision and turn them into a website that looks amazing, is easy to navigate, and compels visitors to take action that you want them to take.
Handpicking professionals who specialize in specific CMS (Content Management System) such as WordPress, Webflow, and Shopify is also an option. They can set up your site and ensure everything functions properly so that you can take over to add text, images, and contents as you please.
And if something goes wrong, they'll be there to help you.
2. They have the resources required.
A professional has already done the research and paid for all of the software required to create an outstanding website:
They have the software set up and ready to go. Some of this software can easily cost $200+ per month.
They have access to the talent required to develop the graphics, illustrations, and material required to make your website look professional.
They have access to a wide range of experts with diverse skill sets to ensure that EVERYTHING on your site is optimized (Copywriting, content, SEO, development, analytics, and so on).
Should any problems arise, they will be able to deal with problems more quickly and complete your job more swiftly than you could on your own.
3. Get it right the first time.
As long as you pick the right professional to do the job, you can be confident in the final product and reap the benefits.
No one wants their website to look like it was built by themselves. But in reality, it's pretty obvious for potential customers to spot the difference.
By choosing the right team, you won't have to worry about the website not looking right, having to redo it yourself, or paying someone else to fix it. Ultimately saving you from wasted time, money, and lots of headaches in the long run.
Hiring a professional will be costly. What you have to evaluate is if the money you invest is worth the value of a beautiful, high-performance website that's customer-focused. Most importantly, if this website will generate profit for you in the long run.
Some professionals and agencies charge more than others, but in general, someone charging $500 for a completely constructed website is unlikely to provide you with the same quality, functionality, and ROI as an agency charging $5,000.
A great way to assess this is to seek out 3~5 bids to compare the prices among the different firms. Once you set the benchmark, make sure not to pick the cheapest one as most things in life, you get what you pay for.
2. Great things take time.
A true professional wishes to design a professional website for your company. And it's not going to happen overnight.
Before the final product, a project like this will require weeks of:
Researching your target audience (the most important step)
Creating UI (user interface), UX (user experience), designing, and developing
Multiple revisions and input from you
As a result, don't anticipate your website to be completed in less than a month.
Another thing to keep in mind is that agencies have other clients as well. This causes them to strike a balance to meet the needs of every client. As an example, a request that takes 2 hours to complete could be completed over 2 days.
3. You'll have to consider your options carefully.
One significant disadvantage of hiring a professional is that many advantages could be disadvantages. Not everyone who claims to be a web designer actually knows what they're doing or has the necessary abilities and experience.
You should also be aware that some agencies will outsource the work to someone else. If this is the case, you need to be comfortable with that and have a clear understanding of who will do what.
Before you hire anyone, do your research, ask for references, and go over their portfolio. Have an in-depth discussion with them to ensure that their vision aligns with yours and that you will both form a long-lasting relationship.
Another good idea is to have a contract and an SOW (statement of work) signed before starting a project to make sure both parties have an aligned vision of the website's goals. This will also prevent the project from getting off track and delaying the deadline.
So, should you build a website yourself?
The answer is... it depends.
If you're on a tight budget, have the time, and are comfortable with learning new things, building the website yourself might be a better option (plus all the fun that comes with it).
But if you value time and getting it right the first time, hiring a professional will always be the best option. They will likely do a better job than you would anyhow, and you can rest assured that everything is taken care of – from design to hosting to marketing.
You've probably heard time and time again that you need a website if you want your business to grow. But what does that mean? And more importantly, what exactly are the benefits of having a website for your business?
We'll break down the top 10 benefits of having a website for your business and give you some tips at the end to help you get started. So read on to learn about how a website can help your business succeed and why you are missing out if you don't have a professional website.
1. Builds Awareness of Your Business
If you don't have a website, are you confident that your potential customers are finding you online?
In today's world where our entire world is at our fingertips, you want your potential clients to find you easily and quickly. And if they can't...you've lost them.
Your website is like your home base online - it's a place where customers can learn more about who you are, what you do, and why they should choose you.
This brings you to the next point...
2. Helps You Stand Out from the Competition
Are you positioning yourself as you'd like to be perceived by your potential customers?
When it comes to small businesses, competition is fierce. And if you're not doing something different to set yourself apart, you're going to have a tough time attracting customers.
People have tried a lot of solutions before, and have been disappointed. They’re always looking for something better. We live in a society where we’re always looking for the next best thing.
A website can help them show this by giving you a unique online presence that sets you apart from the rest. From the page content to its visual layout, you have the freedom to communicate your unique offerings to your customers.
With a well-positioned website, you can show off your business's personality and highlight what makes you different from your competitors.
Imagine you are looking for a local plumbing service on Google and you come across two businesses:
A professionally designed website that speaks to customers' needs, and displays certifications, testimonials, and valuable resources to aid you with DIY plumbing.
A business that is only listed on social media and GMB with the list of their services, address, and phone number.
Which one would you likely choose?
84% of today's consumers admit that a well-designed website makes your business more credible than those who solely rely on social media profiles. And 30% of them won't even consider buying from a business without a website. (Verisign)
To make a sale, customers need to feel confident that you're a reputable company that can be trusted to deliver on your promises. And one of the best ways to do that is through your website. Your website is a reflection of your business - If it's professionally well-designed with the right testimonials, certifications, and awards, it will increase the probability that a customer will do business with you.
By providing valuable information to help your target audience, you can show them that you're an authority in your field. This will greatly help you in building trust with your audiences as well.
4. Save Time
One of the greatest benefits of having a website is being able to save time for you and your staff.
This is especially important for customers who are looking for immediate solutions to their problems - They can visit your website to find more information about your products or services, without having to wait for you to reply to their questions.
Websites can also automate some tasks that you would otherwise have to do manually. For example, you can use a contact form on your site to automatically generate leads or sales inquiries or use an e-commerce platform to take and process orders. This can save you a lot of time and help you to focus on other aspects of your business that requires your attention.
5. Generate Leads
With the right strategy and tools, your website can act as a powerful lead generation tool for your business. By providing valuable content, you can attract potential customers who are interested in what you have to offer. Not only will this help to increase traffic to your website, but it will also help to boost your ranking on Google, generating more traffic.
In addition, by using lead capture forms and email marketing, you can gather contact information from customers who are interested and keep them updated on your latest products and services. These tactics can help take a website from a simple online brochure to a powerful lead generation tool.
6. Helps You Cut Costs
A website can help your business save money in several ways. For example, it can help you reduce advertising expenses, while at the same time allowing you to reach more audiences on a global scale. Even better, you can target a very specific audience by implementing an SEO (Search Engine Optimization) strategy.
A website can also help a business save money on customer support costs, as customers can often find answers to their questions on the website.
If done right, a website can streamline processes and automate tasks. This can help to reduce the amount of time and money spent on administrative tasks, freeing up more funds to reinvest back into your business.
7. Get Measurable Results
Doesn't spending thousands of dollars on advertising and not knowing how much it was wasted frustrate you?
One of the best benefits of having a website is that you can track how well your marketing efforts are doing with a website analysis. You can see how many people are visiting your site, where they’re coming from, and what actions they’re taking on your site.
This information can help you to make decisions about which marketing tactics are working for your business and make adjustments quickly for a better ROI (return on investment)
With the right online system in place, you can even compare your website’s performance to that of your competitors. Is your website traffic increasing while your competitor’s traffic is decreasing? This could be a sign that you’re doing something right and they’re doing something wrong.
Having a measurable marketing strategy is the key to improving the ROI of your business.
8. Rank on Google (SEO)
Google is the most popular search engine in the world, with over 3.5 billion searches per day. This makes it a powerful platform for advertising your business.
When people search for keywords related to your products or services, your website can appear as one of the top results. This is known as ranking high on Google, and it can be a powerful way for you to reach more customers.
However, ranking high on Google requires a strategic approach and ongoing effort with SEO. You need to ensure that your website is properly optimized for search engines and that you’re publishing valuable content that’s relevant to your target audience.
9. Your Salesman 24/7
When it comes to sales, time is of the essence. The sooner you can contact a potential customer, the more likely you are to close the sale. This is where your website comes in handy – it can act as your salesman 24/7.
It's a sales machine that never sleeps or takes a break. It can perform as effectively as you and your web designer build it to be.
Your website should be able to attract the "right" clients, communicate your value to them, explain why you're the best alternative, answer their questions, and in some cases – sell your service to them.
10. Return On Investment (ROI)
The most obvious reason that any business owner should invest in a website is this - A professional, conversion-focused website will produce an ROI that will exceed the initial investment faster than you can imagine.
Your website will work for you 24/7, generating new leads, and communicating the value of your services clearly to your target audience.
Let's say you own an electric company and you invest $3,000 in a new website. If it brings you 2 new customers per month at a value of $1,000, your website will pay off itself in 2 months. And let's not forget your customer lifetime value as well.
Anything after that will be your profit to keep.
The Benefits of Having a Website are Immense
A professionally built website produces positive outcomes for your business in a variety of ways:
Builds awareness of your business.
Helps you differentiate from your competition.
Creates trust with your customers and establishes credibility & professionalism.
Save time by automating mundane tasks.
Generates leads without you having to chase down new customers.
Helps you cut down on advertising costs with a small budget.
Get measurable results to make data-driven decisions.
Helps you rank on Google and makes Google Ads possible.
Communicates your value like a salesman, 24/7.
Produces ROI faster than you would with other advertisement methods.
How You Can Get Started
"Okay, but how do I get started? Do I hire a freelancer? Or an agency? Should I build the website myself?"
This will depend on a few factors such as:
The time you have available
Your experience in web design and website builders
The potential of a website for your business/industry
If you value time and getting it right the first time, you should work with a professional web design agency that can realize your goals and deliver the benefits mentioned above.
On the other hand, if you're low on budget and just getting started, building a website yourself using Wix or Squarespace can be a great option.