Building the perfect website for your business is nothing short of a miracle. And building a miracle is no easy feat. So, what does it take to build that perfect website for your business? Iskra Evtimova, a marketing and SEO specialist, and proprietor at Iskra-Evtimova.com, spills the beans on what SEO hooks, design elements, key components you need to keep in mind before you begin creating your perfect website.
1. Could you share 5 web design best practices that will help businesses create a stellar website that is fast to load, slick in appearance, and utilitarian to use?
1) Optimize your images: The larger the image size, the slower it is to load. So, when you upload images to your website media, be sure to compress them upfront.
2) Do not try to fill the white space: Maybe you have heard the expression “Let the element breathe”. Leave enough space between the elements so the user’s eye can follow the content without any distractions of banners, ads, etc.
3) Use text colour that is easy to be seen: Often, I run into websites with a grey background and slightly darker grey text. This makes it difficult to read, and this is something that makes users run away. Avoid such colour errors.
4) Do not overdo it with the buttons: Try to always have 1 or 2 buttons on the screen. Any more and your users will definitely get confused. You should make the button you want them to click, their only choice.
5) Stay consistent with the buttons: If you have a button “Try for free”, use the same button everywhere.
2. When designing a new website, what SEO hooks should businesses keep in mind to get the best ranking results?
Here I will give the top 3 tips I always follow.
1) Research your keywords well and then use them: People usually don’t research how their potential visitors will look for them or somehow forget to use the keywords they want to rank for. To prevent this mistake, create a table with the keywords you target, check if these keywords are the best for your business and then use the list when you write the content for every page of your website.
2) Do the URL structure in the beginning: It is important to consult with an SEO specialist for the URLs of your website. This is something that must be done in the planning stage. If it is done wrong, it can be fixed, but it takes time and money and this is unnecessary. Don’t forget to use the best keywords here too.
3) Cross-linking: People usually decide that if there is a menu on the website, the web pages are connected and there is no reason to include links in the copy. Wrong! This is a totally different thing. Include 2-3 links to other pages from your website in the page copy. If done correctly, this will boost your website visibility in Google.
3. What design elements should businesses keep in mind whilst creating a blog page or a blogging website? (Share any 5 elements or tips that you recommend)
1) Do not forget to include a subscribe form for your new articles: Even if you don’t know now what you are going to do with these contacts it is always good to have the emails of the people who like you and enjoy your articles.
2) Include sharing buttons that are easy to use: If someone finds your article amusing or useful, make it easy for them to share it on social media.
3) Allow comments on your articles: There are different plugins you may use for comments. Some of them include commenting with a user’s Facebook account or Gmail account. Think of your target group and your readers which will be the easiest way for them to post a comment if they want to.
4) Next and Previous Articles: Try to engage your visitors for as long as possible. They may have landed on one of your articles, but this doesn’t mean they won’t like anything else. How much time people stay on your website is an SEO ranking factor, so be sure to include some hooks to make visitors stay longer.
4. Broadly speaking, what are the key components to create a successful website?
The key components to creating a successful website are:
1. Create a bulletproof plan that includes all the tasks and their order.
2. Do a keyword research.
3. Pick a domain name when you already know which keywords will be beneficial for you.
4. Create the website structure and URL structure – what pages you will have.
5. Create a plan for each page and what keywords they should rank for.
6. Use these keywords in the copy, meta title, meta description, headlines and sub-headlines.
7. Choose colours that represent your brand. Colour psychology is important.
8. Use visual guidelines to guide the user’s eye to the button you want them to click.
9. Use scarcity and urgency to help your visitors decide faster.
10. Once your website is ready, install Google Analytics code and start observing and analyzing what your visitors are doing on your website and how they interact with it. Improve on your shortcomings and analyze again. This is the only way to improve your results.
5. Give us your take on the best website building tools for small businesses. (Share any 3 tools and one supporting reason for each)
Three of the tools I usually use are:
1) Google keyword planner: Here you can do your keyword research. This tool is part of Google AdWords, but it can be used even if you don’t want to create a paid campaign.
2) PageSpeed Insights: Here you can test how fast your website is loading for desktop and mobile. Website load speed is a ranking factor so you would definitely want to check this out.
3) Duplicate checker: There are a lot of tools for this. You may choose the one you like. This tool checks for plagiarism. Google loves unique content and can even penalize your website if it is packed with duplicate content. Use this tool to check the content in case If you have outsourced the content creation work for your website.
6. What trends do you foresee in the web design space?
I believe a lot of website owners will redesign their old websites to be more simple, user-friendly and valuable to users. The websites will load faster, with fewer connection errors. In the future, we will be able to do almost everything online, so it will be more important to make the websites easy to use without any delays. As a marketing specialist, I believe that customer service and communication will play a big part in any online sale or conversions.
Also published on Medium.