Three Critical Functions of Any Effective Website
One of the things I get the privilege of doing while working with so many companies on their marketing objectives is looking at a great deal of websites. While helping break down what a website should be doing for a business, we have come up with a list of three critical things any website must do in order to be effective. While a website can do more than these three things, it is my belief that it must do these three well.
- Be Optimized for Search Engines (SEO) – Without optimization a website cannot fully accomplish its mission. Even if it looks great on the outside, if it is not communicating to search engines what is contained inside, it is lacking. However, what we often find with many client’s websites when we start is that little or no SEO had been done when the website was built. This is because many companies that build websites view SEO as something separate than the website build.
I disagree with that. While a website certainly needs to look modern and function properly on the user end, it must be built in a way that communicates with search engines what the content contained is about. This is what is going to cause your website to come up in search results for relevant inquiries. What good is a pretty face if no one ever sees it or if you need to spend an undue amount of money just to make sure people get to see it? If you are having a website built, make sure that at least a core amount of SEO is done as part of the build and going live process.
- Branding and Credibility – Another critical function of your website is to create the proper impression of your company. You want the website to properly represent your brand and your capabilities. Just like people often judge someone based on how they are dressed, many people will make assumptions about your company merely based on how your website looks.
You may be the best installer within 50 miles and have the most experience, but lose a job to the new guy because he had a more polished online presence. This may not be fair and it may not be what you would want, but that is reality in a 2018 world. People will make judgments about you based on what they see online and that will speak to them about your credibility. Make your online impression is a good one.
- Convert Traffic to Leads – The last of the three critical elements is a website design structure that converts traffic to leads. We can write an entire book on this topic alone, but suffice to say that you need to make it easy for the interested party to ask for more information. A visitor to your site should not need to hunt around for a phone number or email to reach you. Make that information readily available in several areas.
In addition, your website should have easy to use contact forms that enable an interested party to ask questions in a way that may not be as direct as a phone call. Paths to the contact information and forms should be readily available. Better to error on the side of having too many paths than not enough.
I hope that you found this article to be informative and give you some things to look for with your website. Whether updating your existing site or building a brand new one, make sure you have these three functions locked down in order to have an effective website.