The views included in this article are entirely the work and thoughts of the author, and may not always reflect the views and opinions of Regex SEO.
Fifty milliseconds is all the time it takes for someone to gloss over your website. During this time the brain can process just about everything it needs to know about the visual aspect of what it’s looking at. Website trends change about as quick as the brain can process them, which is why it’s always important to be a step ahead of the curb. Designing your business website is equal parts visual and equal parts practical. You have to be mindful of the aesthetic of the website so you can keep visitors intrigued, but there’s a couple of steps you need to take before you get there. A pretty website won’t do much if nobody is around to see it. Luckily, there are ways to get your website out there so that as many people as possible can see it in all its glory. Here are some tips to help you get started.
1. Google has your back
Doing good business is the best way to put your brand on the map, but what if you could get a helping hand from the map as well. Having your business listed by Google is a great way to get some exposure. You might think that a shout out like that would cost you a pretty penny, but you won’t be opening your wallet for this at all. If you’re searching for some kind of product online, you’ll find that the search results will include local businesses that offer those same products. This is usually on a separate page that is called “Google my business”.
The best part about setting up a Google my business page is that it’s entirely free. You might be wondering what the catch is, but there really isn’t one. It’s in the interest of Google that they know the location of every relevant local business so that people searching for products on their search engine will know where to find them. If cooperate with Google and set up a page for your business, it will give you an enormous amount of exposure on local searches.
However, you can’t just set up a page willy-nilly. There is a verification process you have to go through. This is so that Google knows that the business is in fact yours. The process is pretty simple when you get down to it. You request a verification code from the team that is in charge of Google my business and then once you receive it in the mail, you have proven that it is your location. There isn’t all that much work involved, but the prize is well worth it.
2. Mobile websites are the future
Desktops might be the most popular way to browse internet websites, but mobile isn’t too far behind. Nowadays people are flocking to mobile websites like never before. There has been a steady increase of mobile users since at least 2008. This trend is showing no signs of stopping as the number of people browsing on mobile phones remains at an all-time high. Search engines like Google have taken note of this and they are adapting their search engine optimization. Websites that run well on mobile phones are obviously going to be popular and their frequency in searches is going to increase. However, this effect cuts both ways. If a website isn’t well suited for mobile browsing, it’s going to be ranked lower than a website that has adapted.
Your web designers need to keep this in mind when building an optimal business website. Page speed is just as important on mobile website browsing as it is on desktop browsing. Search engines rank page load speed as pretty high on their list of priorities, meaning fast pages will net you a good rank in searches. A notoriously slow page won’t exactly be first on the list of searches. With this in mind, you need to keep your mobile page light when it comes to details. Having lots of elements on your web page might make it more visually appealing, but you need to consider how much speed you’re willing to sacrifice. Optimize images to decrease their size and use compression wherever you can. There’s no reason you can’t help yourself with some tools that will make this process easier. Page speed applications can tell you how fast your website is loading and what might be causing a loss in speed. Use this to your advantage and build the fastest website you can set your sights on.
3. Opinions should always be welcome
Everybody likes sharing a piece of their mind. Web developers know this fact all too well. Businesses are often on the fence about reviews. On one hand, they do bring business and new potential customers, on the other hand, some people might take advantage of them. When it comes to online businesses, reviews are where it’s at. Just about every business website is implementing a review system for themselves. You might be wondering why this is the case. The truth is, there is no bad publicity when you’re talking about online reviews. Whether the reviews are positive or negative, the results are all the same. You’re going to get an increased number of clicks and search engines will favor your website. Websites with no reviews at all get much less traffic than websites with a review system.
Where you put your reviews is just as important as having them. Your website alone won’t cut it. Luckily, there are lots of websites that offer review systems by default. Facebook and Google + are some popular websites that you can set up pages on. People that run into these pages will note the reviews and they might visit your own website. Having a review system also tells your customers that you care about their opinions and you’re working on improving your product for them.
4. Maximizing search engine exposure
Lately, there has been a lot of talk of SEO, or search engine optimization. It’s one of the most important aspects of any website that wants to make a name for itself on the internet. Search engines look for the best-suited website that is related to a specific search term. This means they have to factor in lots of variables. This includes location, relevant content, page load speed, and other things. Businesses are clamoring to get those sweet rank increases for their websites in order to be the first to get a client’s attention.
There are lots of ways to get your website higher up on lists. Having just the right kind of content will catch the attention of search engines. This content has to be relevant to the search term and it has to be original. Knowing what kind of content and knowing how to do optimal link building is a bit more complicated than it sounds. As guys from GWM, an Australian SEO agency, like to point out, having the best possible SEO is crucial if you want your website to have increased exposure.
5. Titles are just as important
When you’re searching for something online, one of the first things you’ll notice is the title of websites that are displayed. The content of the site is also important, but the title will be the first thing that catches your eye. If it’s relevant to your interests, you’re very likely to click on that link. If a product has a separate web page dedicated to it, that page should have an impactful title that best represents it.
Choosing the right amount of words can be tricky. Too short and you might not have enough details to describe the product. If the title is too long, search engines won’t prioritize it because it could contain redundant information. You have to find the Goldilocks zone of web page titles. If you manage to do this, the product will surely be one of the first results to pop up in a search.
With the start of a new year come many website design trends. If you are a business owner it’s important that you and your web design team are always on top of the latest trends. They are just as important as having a proper product or good customer service. This is the price of working on the internet. It’s not much of a sacrifice considering the benefits this communication medium provides. Keep some of these tips in mind and you will be on your way to an even more successful business year.