To say a website is important to your business is like saying a tennis racquet comes in handy at Wimbledon. And for something so essential it’s often pulled together in a rush. Or a pretty wordpress theme is purchased and populated, not taking into account the theme wasn’t the best choice for how your business information needs to flow. Here are 6 common mistakes businesses make when building a website.
They don’t understand what their website is actually supposed to do for them.
If you ask people, invariably they’ll tell you what they love most about a well designed website is the ability to find what they’re searching for quickly. It has intuitive navigation.
Having the first page overwhelm with too much “stuff”. The home page should sell the sizzle, not the steak. As with a department store, you don’t cram everything by the entrance. You make it inviting and lead them into the areas of interest. A pleasurable journey with all departments clearly marked out so you’re not overwhelmed.
They want to tell their whole story on the first page. This is sort of a lead off of point # 2. Early search engine optimizing seemed to point towards putting a ton of copy and all your main keywords on the front page. They built for search engines, not for visitors. Google has gone to great pains through various algorithm changes to make a better web, and force websites to be made for the visitor, not the crawlers.
They forgot, people are on your site for their needs, not yours. Websites make the same mistakes many business people make when greeting at a mixer. They assume you’re interested in their product or services and go at great lengths to tell you way more than you bargained for out of the gate. Remember, your site, your product, your service is there to satisfy or fix a need. You’re a problem solver. Not a seller.
Search Engines do count. In spite of what was mentioned in point #3, you do need to write and design with basic search engine mechanics in mind. Yes Virginia, there is a search crawler, and he comes around a lot more than once a year. You do need to write enough copy to let the crawlers know what your site is about and what your areas of focus are so they know how and where to rank you for what key words. The call to arms of keyword density and prioritizing copy has been also given a big boost to business owners who lacked focus. Meeting search criteria also forces you to keep your eye on the ball. You look at your competitors and constantly reinvent your business with your keyword and over all prioritizing.
People write their own copy. The smart business owner, regardless of their business size, spend money on professional copywriting. Or at the very least have someone they trust go over the copy they or their team have written. But a professional wordsmith will often find a way to say what you need to say in a lot fewer words. And they can often see the tree for the forest, something you long forgot how to do because you’ve been standing in a crowded forest far too long.