How to make your small business website more effective (Part 2)

In my previous post, I emphasized how important it was to have a website that reaches your potential clients, and alleviate their frustrations. We looked at some of the more ‘technical’ aspects such as having a strong Call to Action, and being simple.  Today I am going to look at the visual design aspect of the site. We will see how that plays a crucial role in drawing people to your site.

While I won’t dive into complex design techniques like parallax scrolling or lottie animation, I will explore practical strategies to enhance the visual appeal of your website. Visual design plays a critical role in attracting and retaining visitors, establishing credibility, and conveying your brand message effectively. By incorporating these elements, you will be better equipped to create a visually captivating website.

hand holding an iPhone reading a mobile-first effective website

1. Mobile-Friendly

It is essential your website is optimized for mobile devices. Many, if not most, of your potential clients are likely to access your website from their mobile device. Having a mobile-friendly website is probably one of the most crucial aspects for a website. In fact, 57% of internet users say they won’t recommend a business with a poorly designed website on mobile. So, if your website does not look good or works on mobile you are missing out on a large portion of a your audience.

When I first started making websites, I would start with making a desktop (large screen) version. Then I would condense it down to mobile size. That is how a lot of websites still work. But that’s backwards. I soon realized this mistake and started building websites mobile-first and then started making them for larger screens.

There are 2 reasons that making your website for mobile-first is important:

  1. Most people visit this version of the site first
  2. When you create for smaller screens you are limited in space. This forces you to really decide what information is the most important for your site.

With more people relying on their mobile devices as their primary source of information, building your website for mobile-first is crucial to ensure a positive user experience and engagement. This ensures that your content is easily readable, images are properly displayed, and navigation remains intuitive across various mobile devices. It also helps you make sure you put the most important information first and it can also help with SEO rankings and overall visibility. This in turn makes it easier for your ideal clients to find you online.

When building your website for mobile make sure to test your website on different mobile platforms to ensure it provides a good browsing experience. My rule of thumb is always test the smallest screen size and go up from there. Typically, this will be an iPhone 6/SE and the largest will be typically a larger Galaxy phone. Lastly, avoid over-using animations or large images that could slow down the loading time.

effective website on different size devices

2. Simple, but Good/Clean Design

When it comes to small business websites, simplicity is key. A clean, visually appealing design that is easy to navigate makes for a good user experience. Whereas a cluttered or confusing design can add to their frustration and potentially drive them away.

Opt for a clean layout, ample white space, and a consistent color scheme that aligns with your brand. Choose fonts that are easy to read and maintain a good contrast between text and background. Use high-quality images that reflect your brand’s identity and resonate with your target audience. In regards to images and the last point made above, make sure your images are properly sized and in a next-gen format like .webp. This again, helps with load time for your site which also affects search engine ranking.

The navigation menu must be be understandable, to allow visitors to find the information they need quickly. Organize your content into clear sections and use headings, subheadings, and bullet points to improve readability. Make use of strategic spacing and visual hierarchy to guide your ideal clients through the content in a logical and engaging manner. Just like in your marketing message, if you confuse people you will lose people.

Remember, simplicity doesn’t mean boring. A good clean design can still have personality and convey your brand’s unique identity. There are many methods to creating an appealing design, and I like to follow 4 principles when I build websites. By adopting a simple yet visually appealing design, you create a user-friendly experience that makes an effective website and turn visitors into clients

person holding phone with contact info on screen

3. Easy to find Contact Information

It’s important to make it effortless for your ideal clients to get in touch with you. Frustrations can mount if they struggle to find your contact information, leading to missed opportunities and potential customer dissatisfaction.

Place your contact information prominently on your website, preferably in the header or footer of every page. Include essential details such as your phone number, email address, and physical address (if applicable). Utilize a “Contact Us” or “Get in Touch” page where visitors can find a comprehensive form to fill out or direct links to your social media profiles.

Incorporate a clear and visible call-to-action button, prompting visitors to reach out to you directly. For example, you can use phrases like “Contact Us Now” or “Schedule a Consultation”, much like your Call to Action. Ensure that the button stands out by using contrasting colors or visually appealing design elements.

Additionally, consider implementing live chat feature, which can provide immediate assistance to your website visitors, if your company has those resources. These tools can help address any questions or concerns in real-time, making it easier for your ideal clients to engage with your business. Prompt and efficient communication will contribute to building trust and establishing a positive relationship with your audience.

Website layout mockup on Laptop screen
Website layout mockup on Laptop

Conclusion

Creating an effective small business website can seem really challenging. However, by focusing on the tips I laid out here and last time, you can build a website that speaks to and engages your potential clients effectively.

To make your website effective, give clear direction with a call to action. Show you understand your customer’s problems and offer a trustworthy solution. Make it easy for them to start with a straightforward plan and mobile-friendly design. Ensure your brand identity is reflected in a simple, clean layout, and make it effortless for clients to get in touch by clearly showing your contact information.

By implementing these elements, you can transform your website into a powerful tool that attracts and engages your ideal clients, ultimately growing your business and reducing the burdens you may feel.

Cover of Reanimation Design 5 Essentials guide

And lastly, if you are really wanting to take your website to the next level, don’t forget to download my 5 Essentials for an effective website. This guide, along with these 2 blog posts will help elevate your website and draw clients in. And you can start implementing these within an hour! And if you are needing me to personally help you out, don’t wait! Schedule a Call and we can discuss what you need and how I can help in order to turn more visitors into clients.