In a world where people stay online for most of the day, a standard website is just not enough. Depending on the product, maximum consumers visit a company’s or service provider’s website before making a purchase. And as more and more consumers make decisions based on their online experience, the appearance, usability, and accessibility of your website is more important than ever, especially if you are in a competitive market.
A website is your public branding portal. Anyone in the world can learn about a company, individual or project with a simple online search. Your website creates an image of who you are and what you want the international community to know about you, your product or service.
Having a right understanding of your website’s role can greatly benefit your business. Think of it as keeping a salesman to represent your company.
Working on a website is the ideal time to consider the rest of your branding as well – message, color palette, and logo. The worst thing you can do is invest in a website and not have the proper design elements to make the website stand out visually.
THESE DAYS, IT’S LIKE A BUSINESS CARD!!
Having a business card has been necessary for years and years. Websites have become just as necessary. It’s expected and it has become a major component to the consumer’s decision process. Even if they learn about your company through a trusted referral, at a sponsored event, or in a meeting with you, before they make a final decision they will visit your website. Make sure it looks good, functions well, and clearly communicates your company’s goals.
New technologies are now evolving in website development so as to make it more attractive and convenient for the visitors– Responsive Website Design RWD- allows your website to automatically resize and reconfigure its layout based on the device it is being viewed on. So, whether your consumer is viewing your website on their desktop, their tablet, or their phone, they are seeing the appropriate version. This is great news as it has eliminated the need for maintaining two websites – a desktop and a mobile. This cuts costs and saves you time, only having to update one website
Another feature, though not quite as new, is Content Management System Websites (CMS). These websites use a platform that allows the owner to easily make changes to the website without any software – just an internet browser. The days of relying on your web developer to make every little change to your website are over, which is great news. This means keeping your website fresh and up to date with current information is easier than ever.
Using a website as a branding tool is important because:
It expresses your quality through design
If you make the information look great, your visitors are going to automatically give it more seriousness or a reputation of quality because of the good looks.
Branding is about “looks”, so make sure your website has the looks you think will best support your goals.
“First impression is the last impression” , this holds for your websites. Thus design it in a way that a visitor gets impressed.
Delivery of Information Sought
The user experience at your site must always provide the visitor with the answers that they need, and this must happen quickly. Making the site look good is step one, but making it simple and concise is the essential second step.
Look at your website in the same manner you might view TV commercials or billboard advertisements – they are designed to grab your attention, but it is the information that is sent out via the message that is the actual goal.
Once you have their attention, however, you have to ensure that you give them more than they came looking to find.
If you also ensure that you exceed their expectations by providing them with content of even more value, you are ensuring that you have made a place in the visitor’s mind. When they next need a product or service similar to yours, or need to purchase more of what you offer, there will be no doubt in their minds as to the best source.
Easy to navigate
When the site is easy to use and full of good-looking pages and useful content, it is going to assign a level of quality to your company that the best advertising could never provide.
Thus using website as a branding tool, your goals are to enhance your professional image and build a reputation for quality products or services through the text and images found at the site. Because the actual products or services are not experienced through a visit to your website, however, it is essential to translate your ideal reputation through every facet of the website.
Here are 10 elements to consider for designing an attractive website:
- Logo and branding
- Simple typography that is easy to read
- Defined color palette
- Easy user interface tools and elements that work in intuitive ways
- Navigation that moves users through the site
- Strong images that showcase your brand
- Concise and targeted copy
- Easy to understand calls-to-action
- Your brand story told in a way that connects with users
- Modern design techniques and interface
Does your company website present your brand well?