Online Business Web Design

Why Planning Your Web Design In Advance Is Essential For Every Online Business

As a business owner, you should be aware that good web design is essential for your business whether it sells physical products or services. Your website is the storefront to an audience of thousands of potential customers and just like any brick and mortar store it must look professional and welcoming.

Excellent web design is about more than just making the home page look appealing, and if you want your website to be effective then planning its design and functionality is essential. There are three main web design factors to consider.

#1 What purpose does your website serve?

This crucial question is what poorly designed websites completely fail to answer. Knowing the main purpose of your website in advance and ensuring the design and functionality of the site match that purpose, will give you a huge advantage over your competitors. Some questions and possible answers to consider prior to designing your website:

  • Is it a corporate site? Should be visual with easily recognisable company branding and colours.
  • A Content site to provide information? Text must be easy to read, with simple navigation.
  • Single product sales page? Easy to skim, with focus on fonts and colours.
  • Is it an e-commerce site? Requires a shopping cart and an easily navigated product catalogue.

#2 What Audience Are You Trying To Reach?

Successful magazine publishers know exactly who their target audience are and design the front page of their magazines with images, colours and layouts that appeal to that audience. Your web design should be done in the same way with factors that may influence how you target your audience being age group, gender, social grouping and whether your website is for corporate or personal customers.

Once you have established who you want your website to appeal to, research the successful websites this audience visits. Are the layouts colourful or monotone? Are they full of text or images? Do they use video on the home page or not? Don’t copy their exact layouts but base your web design on similar concepts so that your website will appeal visually to your target audience.

#3 Consider the User Experience

Once you have given thought to the layout, it is time to think about how your web design is going to cater to the visitor’s experience. Ideally, you want a website design that allows the user to navigate easily, regardless of what the purpose of your site is.

If it is an e-commerce site the process for customers to select products, add them to the shopping cart and check out should be streamlined as much as possible. The pages of larger corporate sites with lots of sub-sections containing information should have a logical menu system which is easy to navigate. Even single page sales letters should make it clear where customers should click to buy.

Thinking carefully about your web design in advance will not only make your website more effective it will save you time and money in the future by not having to rebuild or replace a site that has failed due to poor planning.

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