7 Ways to Make Your Small Business Website Stand Out
For small business owners around the world, success heavily hinges upon the effectiveness of your website. From strikingly stylized web design to implementing resourceful content management systems, to simply spreading the word about your products or services, knowing all the ins and outs of what can make your small business website stand out will benefit your company, exponentially. Best of all, you don’t need to have a degree in computer science to comprehend and utilize what it takes to make the most out of your website. Check out these seven ways you can improve your small business website to ensure your clients are receiving the best virtual customer experience possible:
1) Acquire Your Own Domain
A domain name is the online address for customers to access your website, and if you don’t own your own domain, you could be missing out on thousands of potential clients. If a third-party owns your domain name, such as WordPress or GoDaddy, it makes it harder for people to organically come across your small business website via search engine results. Owning your own domain is relatively inexpensive, and starts by finding out whether your desired website address is readily available. A domain that’s short and sweet, as well as easy to remember and applicable to your business, is the easiest way to get visitors to click on and remember your website. Last but not least, always go for .com when it comes to domain extensions, compared to .co, .net, etc.
2) Choose a CMS
Unless you’re fluid in writing HTML code, you’re going to want to find a CMS (Content Management System) that will help you create your small business website without having to be an expert in web design. Popular CMS’s include Squarespace, WordPress, Wix, or Drupal, but it’s important to find a system that specifically reflects what you think is most important for your website (security, web design, accessibility, metrics, etc.).
If you’re planning on selling products on your website, you’ll want to choose a reliable e-commerce platform to build an online store. It’s expected that 65 percent of Internet users worldwide (nearly 3 billion people) will make purchases online in 2021, so if you want any piece of that pie, work with an e-commerce platform that allows you to easily set up and navigate your own virtual marketplace, such as Shopify, WooCommerce, or Wix.
3) Delicate Web Design
Once you’ve completed the basics of building your own website, it’s time to focus on providing online visitors with a web design aesthetic that emphasizes the tone, look, and feel of your business. According to Web FX, 94 percent of first impressions relate to the design and layout of your website, and 75 percent of website credibility stems from your design decisions. Luxury web design doesn’t need to be overly complicated. You want sophisticated, yet minimal color schemes that will accentuate the mood you want your customers to experience when visiting your website. Big and bold imagery will catch their attention right off the bat, and be sure your business’s message and aspirations are clearly laid out while trying to avoid too much text. Lastly, be sure to personalize your website, whether it’s photos of your staff or team members hard at work, so visitors can put a face with your name.
4) Make It Mobile
More and more people continue to access the Internet with their phones. In fact, mobile websites account for around 50 percent of all the web traffic conducted globally, which means you want your small business website to be as mobile-friendly as possible. An easy way to test how mobile-friendly your website is can be conducted through Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test, where all you need to do is type in your URL for Google to analyze whether you need any areas of improvement. Responsive mobile design and simplified menus are also easy ways to ensure smartphone visitors are experiencing your website in the best ways possible.
5) Optimize Your Website
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is where you can really make your small business website stand out amidst an online sea of competition. It’s a strategy that improves how your site ranks in search engine results, and is the foundation for building and expanding your brand. SEO focuses on a wide range of strategies, including keyword targeting, which allows you to see the most popular words and terms people are searching for that pertain to your business. On-page optimization is where you implement those popular search terms into the content of your website, which will improve your search engine traffic. When executed correctly, SEO is the key to unlocking new visitors and business you would have otherwise missed out on.
6) Wield Social Media
It’s easy to think that the nature or targeted audience of your brand doesn’t necessarily require social media accounts to garner in new business. But whether you’re selling homemade birdhouses, sarcastic bumper stickers, or high-valued real estate, utilizing all the advantages social media can provide for you is crucial for making your website stand out. Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, or Twitter are easy avenues to directly connect with your customers, and provide ample opportunities for your followers to post and share about your services with their friends and followers. Social media marketing is an essential component to effective SEO, and will only work to drive in more traffic to your website.
7) Craft Original Content
Whether it’s personal testimonials from customers and clients, blog article topics pertaining to your company’s industry, or posting tutorial videos on your social media channels, original and quality content is a game changer for helping you expand your brand. It’s an easy way to increase your rankings on search engine results, as well as the amount of time visitors are spending on your website. Quality, original content helps establish and enhance your company’s credibility, and makes it easy for customers to share your content and spread the word via their own social media platforms.
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