Beyond basic web design principles there are four key elements you need to consider in small business website design. If you take these four things into account as you design a small business website then you should be able to create an effective website that actually helps to grow your business. However, if you don’t then you’ll probably end up wasting time and money on a website that doesn’t perform.
The four things you need to consider are:
1. What are you selling and how can it best be presented online?
Whether it’s a product or service you need to consider how it can best be presented on the internet. You may need to have photographs, video or other media created to showcase your products. The internet is a multi-media medium so use it to your best advantage when presenting your offering.
2. Who is the targer market for your small business website and how will you reach them?
It’s no use having a website if it can’t be found by those in your target market. As part of the small business website design process you need to consider exactly who your target market is, what appeals to them and how you will get them to visit your website. This can be done in a number of ways using both online and offline methods and there can be a cost involved so make sure it’s factored into your budget.
3. How will you make your small business website work for your business?
The best small business websites are those that act as more than an online brochure and actually generate leads and sales for your business. Will people buy online directly from the website or will they be using the website to get more information from you before they purchase? What features or functions will you need on your small business website in order to provide what it takes to make sales or generate leads for your product or service? If you plan on selling directly from the website you’ll need to incorporate an online payment processor at the very least and possibly a shopping cart.
4. How will you handle customer support for your small business website?
Online customers are just like offline customers in that they will sometimes require support or have questions. A small business website should leverage the internet to make customer support easier by incorporating things like an FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) page so you don’t have to field a lot of calls or emails all asking the same questions. Help desk software can also help to minimize the customer support workload.
If you’ve carefully considered each of these four keys to effective small business website design then you’ll be building your website on a solid foundation and, once built, it should function as a valuable asset to your business. It should represent your business online in a professional manner to your customers, and reduce your workload while helping to increase your sales.