Whether you’re looking to launch a new website or asking yourself if your current site is up to snuff, there are a handful of important elements that every good site must have.
It’s true that there are a lot of factors in play and a lot of decisions to be made – both prior to launch & long after the site goes live. If you’re feeling a little overwhelmed by it all, or you’re not sure how exactly you can know if you’re heading in the right direction, you’re not alone.
We’ve whittled it down to 8 Key Elements that your website needs. Without these, you’re missing out on revenue opportunities and probably not getting good return on your investment.
1. Your Site Must Be Personal & Real
… Showcasing Your Brand & Reflecting Your Unique Style
Cookie-cutter websites have long passed their expiry date. Gone are the days when a generic site could generate sales or leads.
More & more, people want to interact with sites that look & feel real.
They want to see who you are, understand what your business is all about and get a better feel for your product or services.
Sites that come up short will lose visitors in a matter of seconds.
But if you can create a showcase that lets someone experience your brand and your company, your conversion rates are likely to go up sharply.
2. What Are You Known For?
What’s Your Competitive Strength?
Your site should tell visitors – ideally above the fold on the home page – what you do in a nutshell.
Think of the slogans used by well-known companies.
- Dollar Shave Club’s “Shave Time, Shave Money”
- Disney’s “Happiest Place on Earth”
- Walmart’s “Save Money, Live Better”
What do these all have in common? They give you a really good idea of what the company does and how you’ll benefit by being their customer.
Find your competitive strength, boil it down to a phrase that people can remember, and make it prominent on your website.
3. Highlight Benefits & Answer Key Questions
From the moment a visitor lands on your website – or even before that, in fact – they should be getting a clear understanding of how your product or service can benefit them.
That means showing a clear value proposition.
It means aligning the content on your site with what they are looking for.
And it means answering important questions & solving a problem that they have.
4. Your Site Should Use Images Well
Building on the “real” factor discussed earlier, you need to make good use of images on your website.
This includes photos as well as infographics, screen shots and other designs.
The photos you use should be real.
Give people a chance to connect with you. Give them real images of your company, your team, your products – anything that will show you as real people with a real product that people can relate to.
5. Help People Understand Your Process
… Show Them How Things Work So They Feel Comfortable Taking the Next Step
We tend to shy away from uncertainty and gravitate towards familiarity. It’s human nature.
Even after you’ve made the connection between what someone is looking for and how you can solve their problem, they might be asking an important question:
“How does this work?”
So show them!
Let’s take the Dollar Shave Club example from above.
If you’re not familiar with them (and they do a great job at marketing, so you probably are!), DSC is a subscription-based service that delivers razor blades and shave products to you on an ongoing basis.
Put off by the idea of a subscription? Not sure how it all works?
Dollar Shave Club’s website walks you through it. They show you:
- How their products are solid & dependable
- Why their subscription service is the right way to go
- How you will benefit by saving money on the shaving products you use
By giving us a better understanding of their process, they’ve made us more comfortable taking the next step.
6. Make It Easy & Clear What to Do Next
… and What People Will Get in Return
If people are arriving at the point where you’ve sparked their interest, the worst thing you can do is leave them hanging, unsure of where to go or what to do next.
That’s why it’s important to show people what the next steps are.
In the Dollar Shave Club example:
- they make it clear that you can start now with a trial (no commitment necessary)
- you get to experience their shaving products for yourself (don’t take their word for it)
- the “Get Started” button is a prominent call to action
Let people know what specific action they can take right now – and link that clearly with what they will get in return (i.e. request a quote, start a free trial, download an eBook, etc.).
You’ll be pleasantly surprised what happens when you do.
7. Show People the Face of Your Business
… Give Your Site a Personality, Create a Strong Identity
You might have noticed a theme by now, about keeping it real.
In addition to showcasing your unique style and using genuine images, another way to make a stronger connection is to put a face & personality on your website.
An obvious one that comes to mind is realtors. Real estate agents almost always have their headshots on signs, business cards and websites.
But the same can go for a wide variety of businesses. Here’s one we created for a client in the home renovation business
After putting the business owner’s face on the page, the difference was incredible – we doubled the conversions!
8. Solid Title Tags & Meta Descriptions
… for a Better Perception of What People Can Expect by Clicking Through to Your Site
This last one goes beyond the experience people have while on your site.
Title tags appear at the top of the page in the tab; but both title and meta description appear somewhere else that’s very important: the Google Search Results Page (SERP).
That means that people are searching for a solution to their problem and, hopefully, seeing your site listed in the results.
You have a small amount of real estate to make the case that you have a viable – and better – solution to their problem.
Make that case successfully, by telling them what to expect on the page they’ll click through to, and you’ll get more traffic & more leads.
And that’s what it all comes down to.
Putting It All Together
Is there more to it than this? Sure. Web design and web development has a lot of moving pieces.
We hit the highlights in this article. And we might even do a sequel with more points to come.
But if your website is missing one or more of these key elements, you’re missing out on revenue.
When it comes to building websites that contain all the necessary elements for quality traffic and higher conversions, you’ve got two choices: Go it alone or hire an agency.
Talk to us today about how we can help make your site bring you more traffic, more leads & more revenue. Or click/tap below to test your site out: