Fundamentals of Good Website Design

by | Jun 3, 2021 | Web Design

Graphic showing a web design layout on a whiteboard.

It’s not enough to just have a website for your business–your website has to be designed well with the visitor in mind in order to be effective and become a lead-generating asset to your business.

Get ready and take notes as you’ll want to make sure your website meets these 5 minimum requirements for good website design.

CAPTURE MORE CUSTOMERS THROUGH YOUR WEBSITE

If your business doesn’t have a website, you’re missing out on an effective and affordable opportunity to capture more customers online.

You’re also leaving potential customers hunting to find you on business listing sites or social networks where they have to combat ads from your competitors in order to find you.

So if you’re working on shaping your brand through your own website, keep reading as I cover five essentials of good business website design.

MUST BE MOBILE-FRIENDLY

If your website is not mobile friendly, you’re not servicing your customers well. According to Statista, approximately 51.98% of internet traffic, as of January 2020, comes from mobile devices.

This means that not having a website that isn’t as functional on a mobile device as it is on a computer, can be detrimental to your potential business. Google is also indexing and preferring mobile optimized sites in their results, so for SEO purposes, this is a must.

Don’t believe me? Look at the image of Google Search Console below showing the performance boost one my customers received by simply updating their website to mobile-friendly theme.

Screenshot of Google Search Console.

CLEAR CONCISE COPY

When Twitter introduced the concept of getting a message across in 140 (now 280) characters, many people became aware of just how important it is to be brief and make your point. No one wants to read through unnecessary fluff to find out what it is you do or sell.

Your website must be easy to read, have short paragraphs, highlight important points and most importantly, grab the readers attention.

Your opening title should avoid jargon, address your target audience, and deliver the solution and all its benefits. Think of this as your elevator speech where you have less than 10 seconds to share:

  • What you do (product or service)
  • For whom (people, demographic, location)
  • Why it matters (benefits, solution, relief)

If a person can’t determine what your business is about immediately from your website, then you’ll want to rethink your content, and simplify your core offering so visitors can quickly understand it.

AVOID VAGUE CALLS-TO-ACTION

There’s nothing worse than going to a business’ website and not being able to find how to reach them or even how to purchase their product or service. A good rule of thumb is to avoid making it difficult for your visitors to become customers. This starts with good site navigation and clear calls-to-action.

Try having a single call-to-action or CTA per page, and make it visually prominent using colors, buttons or icons. Make sure the CTA is be clear and compelling, and not misleading or vague.

For example a CTA like, “Click Here”, tells the visitor nothing. Instead use action words that describe exactly what the visitor will experience.

  • Call now (Great for mobile users)
  • Book an appointment (Use a scheduling app like CalendarHero)
  • Send a message (Use a link to Email or SMS)
  • Request a quote (Use a form to get more information)
  • Start a trial (Free trials offer a taste of your product)
  • Chat with someone (Online chat offers quick engagement)

FONTS MATTER

The font(s) you decide to use on your website matter a great deal. You can have some of the most profound content in the world on your website, but if the typography is unreadable, the message will fall flat.

Think of your font as the ‘language’ of your message. If you can’t interpret the language, the message doesn’t get delivered.

Remember that the type of font, serif or sans-serif, the color, weight and size all matter. A thin neon colored font on a white background are never a great combination.

Web friendly fonts also perform better for faster website loading speeds, especially on mobile devices and are more compatible across browsers and devices.

WEB SAFE CURSIVE FONTS

  • Segoe script
  • Rage
  • Script MT
  • Snell Roundhand
  • Lucida Handwriting

WEB SAFE SANS SERIF FONTS

  • Arial
  • Calibri
  • Candara
  • Century Gothic
  • Consolas
  • Dejavu Sans
  • Franklin Gothic
  • Gill Sans
  • Helvetica
  • Lucida Sans
  • MS Sans Serif
  • Neue Helvetica
  • Optima
  • Segoe UI
  • Tahoma
  • Trebuchet MS
  • Verdana

BE VIGILANT OVER VISUALS

Generally speaking, most humans can interpret visual queues. You see it in the signage used on every street and in every building. The colors, icons, and images we see, tell us what to do, where to go, and how we should behave.

We also love being able to look at videos and images that tell a story. Since that’s the case, make sure you include them on your website as long as they help tell the story of what your business and brand is about.

It’s also important to have the images or video represent the end result or the benefit of doing business with you. This includes using real video and real photos whenever possible as part of your visual marketing strategy.

When it comes to visuals on your website here are my suggestions to follow:

  • Avoid stock photos
  • Use simple and recognizable icons
  • Stick to a simple color palette

BE BUILDING TRUST

Your business website should compel a visitor to engage your business, and one of the main reasons that someone won’t engage is for lack of trust.

Give visitors reason to trust your products and services by appealing to their intellect. Provide ample evidence for your claims, and give examples of the service or products benefits. This can be done by showcasing testimonies of past and current customers, writing helpful blog posts, or addressing common objections directly in your copy.

Showcasing real reviews across every page of your website is also key. Try and match the reviews to the product or service that the page is about.

Another way to build trust is to fill your site with real (not stock) photos of recent customers. Revealing the end result of using your product or service is another way to build confidence in what you claim for the consumer.

Photo of before a pool is cleaned and after.

CLOSING

I know I left out other important factors like SSL certificates, optimized images, quality fast hosting, and content delivery networks.

Today’s web builders and hosting providers generally meet those requirements by default. That’s why I chose to address the front-end or customer-facing aspects of a good website.

Remember, your business website is not really about you, but about your customers. If you don’t quite have experience with business website design, don’t worry, you can get help.

Do you agree? Did I miss anything? Send me your feedback.

By Roberto Torres

Roberto is a follower of Christ, Husband, and Dad. He helps local businesses grow as owner of The Local Marketer, and author of The Local Marketing Handbook. In his spare time, you'll find him listening to podcasts like Knowing Faith and 5 Minutes in Church History, or traversing the land of Hyrule.

HOW IS YOUR BUSINESS PERFORMING ONLINE?

Graphic showing the snapshot report scores for each category.

Posting to social media, responding to customer reviews, building your website, monitoring your Google listing… doing digital marketing right takes a lot of work. Get started today by learning how your business is performing online and where there's room to improve.

See Related Posts

How to make sure your website is using HTTPS

How to make sure your website is using HTTPS

HTTPS or Hypertext transfer protocol secure, is the secure version of HTTP. HTTP is the primary protocol used on the web to send data between a web browser and a website. Websites that use HTTPS use encryption to ensure secure data transfer....

read more
Website Navigation Best Practices for Businesses

Website Navigation Best Practices for Businesses

Remember the Fidelity Investments ad with the green navigation line the customer follows? If you don't, you can watch it below.The point of the ad is Fidelity will navigate you to your financial goals. In the same way, your website navigation should guide a visitor to...

read more

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Join our newsletter and receive profitable local marketing resources to grow your business.

Thank you! Now check your inbox for the next steps.