Your Website Is A Tool
Question from Lift Strategies:
A website can be a electronic brochure or it can be used as a marketing tool. Can you tell us how your company helps its clients maximize their online presence?
Answer from October 17 Media:
A website should absolutely act as a tool for the business owner, their clients and their potential customers. It simply takes a little planning before you get started. By answering questions such as the following, you will be better able to develop a website with a purpose.
Consider your website’s information architecture.
What information will you provide on your website, why, and what content has the most priority? How will you lay out your information to make it easy for users to locate the content they are looking for? You don’t need to share everything plus the kitchen sink and you most certainly have some messages that need to be heard louder than others. So, prioritize the information by creating some website architecture and focus on content that is going to be most helpful for your clients and prospects.
Self centred brochure copywriting is a thing of the past.
Consider investing in search engine-friendly web copywriting, which serves to increase your website’s page rank in Google and other search engines. Without effective copy written to appeal to both search engines and real people, your website will lose some of its ability to convert prospective customers into clients.
Just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean it’s not there – the importance of web coding!
Many less experienced designers are still developing their websites in what we call “tables”. It’s not crucial for you to understand how tables work, but it IS important that you don’t select a web designer who builds their websites in tables – it’s an important interview question! Be sure to ask your designer if he or she adheres to W3C standards and, when your website is complete, be sure to run it through the W3C validator at http://validator.w3.org – it should run error-free through this tool.
The benefits of having great website code include, among many others, making your site more accessible to search engines and mobile phones, decreasing website load times and making it easier to implement future website updates
Make a ‘dream-list’ of what you wish your website could do.
Sometimes these ‘dreams’ are actually inexpensive. Tell your web design and marketing company what your vision is! Sometimes adding features such as a content management system (i.e. so you can update your own website), adding a Twitter feed and adding e-commerce components can be done relatively inexpensively. Be sure to ask! Or, they can be put into a phase 2 or 3 plan and be factored into future expansion plans.
Consider what features would make your business run smoother.
Would it help to have e-commerce with analytical tracking? Would having on-demand video tutorials reduce your customer service inquiries? Would an automatic web demo about your product reduce pre-sales time? How securely stored is your client’s data and how accessible is it to you when you need it? Focus on the needs of your company and clients and build your website around function, not just good looks!
october 17 media inc