Your website is your digital shop window and a gateway to allow potential customers to connect with you and ultimately buy from you. It’s an essential marketing tool, which should sit at the very centre of your digital marketing strategy.
When you’re promoting your business online, the key action will be to drive traffic to that website through SEO, PPC, social media, email marketing, advertising and offline promotional activities. Your website address will be on all your brochures, flyers and posters, your Facebook posts should have links to your website and your Pay Per Click advertising invests in getting people there. It’s such an important tool for all businesses – big and small, that’s why we’re passionate about web design.
What should your website do for you?
We find many business owners don’t really understand what an effective website should do and therefore aren’t getting the quality web design that they should. It’s not all about looking pretty and being an online brochure. Effective website design should do so much more than that!
A great website should turn your website visitors into customers. The better the website and the offer, the higher the so-called “conversion rate” should be. In simple terms, this means what percentage of people that visit your website become your customers. The higher this number, the better your website is working for you.
Unfortunately, not all website designs put this “conversion” process at the heart of the site. They focus on looks and don’t work on what the website can do for the customer. This delivers a website which is style over substance and is failing to perform its vital task. Sadly, this means that a high percentage of the investment you’ve made in getting visitors to your site is wasted. Your business deserves better, so make sure you ask for it and check that your web designer can deliver.
What are the stages of quality website design?
At JUCRA we know that web design is so much more than creating a pretty site with pictures and information. We want our websites to be working hard for our clients and to do that we employ a clear strategy and a rigorous approach to the website design and development. Over our 20+ years history and building thousands of websites for clients, we’ve developed our 7-phase web design process. This 360⁰ approach makes sure that the website meets the businesses needs and converts as many visitors into customers as possible. Here’s how it works:
Step 1 – Analysis
We start with information gathering and defining what you want the website to do, your target audience and the business goals that you want the website to fulfil. Without understanding your objectives, we couldn’t deliver the right website for you. This step is crucial, but often missed off from the web design process.
Step 2 – Planning
Creating the website’s sitemap, defining the website structure and deciding what technology is needed to fulfil your digital marketing objectives. We are always referring back to your business goals here to make sure the plan will deliver what you want and that we incorporate the right digital technology from the beginning. This also gives us an opportunity to check with you that you’re happy with the plan and understand what you will be getting at the end of the project so everyone is on the same page.
Step 3 – Website Design
We create the look and feel of the website at this stage using wireframe models. Another key part of this stage is putting ourselves in the place of your target web visitor and making sure your site is easy to use and that it is a pleasure to navigate. We think about the user experience and how to make it work best for your target client.
Step 4 – Content
Once we have the design and the concept of how the site will work for your web visitor, it’s time to produce quality content which your visitors will love to consume and the search engines will find. This includes copywriting, or text production, selecting the right photos and videos, which have all been optimised to keep the search engines interested. This text and pictures are created to lead the customer through their purchasing journey and encourage them to buy.
Step 5 – Development
Now it’s time to actually build the website using HTML and CSS coding, databases and responsive design to make sure it looks just as good on a mobile and tablet as it does on a PC and will work well from a technical point of view.
Step 6 – Testing
This stage is vital to make sure the website works well in every way and in every place that a user might be viewing it. We also check back against the objectives and goals we defined in Step 1 and make sure it fulfils its purpose.
Step 7 – Deployment
Last but not least we make the site live and you’ll start to receive visits from clients, potential clients and the search engines. But our job doesn’t stop there! We want you and your web visitors to have the best experience, so we monitor the site closely after launch, discuss how it’s working with you, fix any bugs or glitches that may arise and offer ongoing support. Our aim is to have happy customers, so we’re here for you for the long-term!
So as you can see, quality website design is a lot more than throwing up a template and hoping for the best. We hope that this explanation has helped you to understand what needs to be considered and the stages of web design necessary to make the site really work for you. Check with your web design team what they are doing and make them accountable for creating an effective website which will fulfil your business objectives. You know what they say, if you don’t ask, you don’t get!
If your web design team can’t comply with these needs, or you want to take a fresh approach, then talk to us. JUCRA has over 20 years in business, a solution focused approach and a commitment to providing the best customer experience. We want to help our clients attract more potential customers to their website and maximise the conversion rate so they gain more customers. If that’s what you’re looking for, we’d love to hear from you. Contact us to find out more about our website design services, or watch our video.