>Using Web Design for Effective Marketing

5 07 2010

>The first online business marketing tool that your business should research—creating a website. Every day new ways to market your business are cropping up; most especially through social media outlets. Using social media is an innovative way to bring in new traffic as is improving search engine optimization (SEO) and including pay-per-click ads, but it doesn’t always garner sales or client leads. It’s so important to remember that, while you’re bringing in traffic from your social media pages, constant research and web design updates are essential to building your online brand.

The average web surfer is spending about 10 seconds on your website. Not a lot, I know. Your business website needs to be cohesive and user-friendly to ensure you’re prompting your guests to stay longer. The longer your potential clients stay, the more information they get about your service or product, and this turns those potential clients into actual clients. You need to consider what differentiates your website from your competition. What are you using to stand apart from the rest of the professionals in your industry?

Before you slap your business name, contact information, and short bio onto a website and open up for business, there are a few steps you need to take.

You should do extensive research to find your target market. Finding them is not good enough though; you need to learn about your potential clients and get to a point where you know them. Using your findings will make it much easier to tailor your website to your client base. Knowing their behaviors will allow you to customize your site, as well.

You should have a plan for what you want your site to accomplish. Do you want to attract new clientele? Are you looking to inform your current client base about your current and upcoming services? Once you have a plan and a goal, you should design your website around achieving this goal by speaking effectively to you target market.

You should also keep it at the forefront of your mind that yes, content is king, but your design and layout are just as important; there should be a nice balance between empty space, images, and content.

Once you’ve done your research, created a plan and goal for your site, and worked on your site design and content, it’s high time to get your site up and running. This is your chance to test your website and find out what is working for you and what isn’t. Use analytic tools to find out how many hits your site is getting and what your web ranking is. Metrics monitoring also comes into play at this point.

You want to track the overall success of your website but you should also be paying attention to finer details. Track link clicks and pay special attention to your key links (request a quote, contact for more information, etc.). If your important links are being ignored, it’s a surefire sign that you need to tweak your information. Play around with link location—use your metric reports to your advantage to figure out what’s working for you and where you can make improvements. Using the above tips will not only generate repeat visitors but will give your business the opportunity to grow and bring on more sales.

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