Fundamentals for Website Success

There are some basics to producing and maintaining an effective website. It surprises us how often we see sites which miss out on these fundamental principles.

Can customers find your website?

  • Is the main heading in text format and tagged as a heading (search engine robots can recognise it as such, and index it)?
  • Or is it a graphic without an h-tag  (they can't)?
  • Does your website use alternate text for graphical content?

Altering your main heading's format and adding alt(ernate) text to graphics could be simple ways to improve your site's search engine ranking.

Do your webpages feature prominently the keywords and phrases that a customer will search on? Or are they low down on the page, less likely to be regarded as important by search engines?

What will a site visitor take in from your webpages?

A website is only as good as its content... but how you present that content is critical too.

  • Is the content of your site directly relevant to the customers you want to target?
  • Is it pitched at their level, for product knowledge and linguistic and graphic style?

Using alternate text for images is important, as it provides access to your website for the visually impaired.

Do your domain name and site reflect your current business emphasis?

Is your website easy to use?

  • Were the menus designed to suit you or to suit your customers?
  • How does each webpage look? Is it inviting or overwhelming?
  • Are there long paragraphs of unbroken text? Too much information at once is unappealing and hard to read.
  • Are some pages cluttered and distracting, with many bright blocks of information all competing for attention?

When was your website look and structure last updated?

Like cars, knees and tap washers, websites get old and eventually it's time to replace them.

Internet technology, both hardware and software, has changed considerably. Since your website was first created, you have probably upgraded your mobile phone at least once and acquired a new desktop computer and/or a tablet.

Be realistic: did you expect your website to last forever?

  • How does your site look and function on tablets or phones?

Website banners and logos may not translate well to smaller screens. Important information - such as contact details - can move to unexpected places, as a site adjusts to operating environments and screen sizes which it was never designed for.

  • What devices do your customers use?
  • Does your site present well and respond quickly on those devices?

If your website fails the mobile test, don't despair. Redeveloping your site to fit on any sized screen, using responsive design, may not cost as much as you think. Alternatively, SuttonNet may be able to develop a reduced form of the website which will appear only on mobile phones. For some businesses, this is  a cost effective interim solution until they are ready for a full upgrade.

How much will it cost to get my website working better?

At SuttonNet we believe that search engine optimisation and connecting well with site visitors are largely about commonsense and sound writing skills, rather than spending up big.

If copywriting, graphics and page layout aren't your forte, or if you lack time to work on your own site, we can help out.

We have worked with small and medium businesses, both rural and urban based, for 16 years and offer affordable web expertise.

Even upgrading your site to newer software or a new look may not cost as much as you think. It's likely that some features and content from the current site can be re-used.

Building your website was a large investment in the first place. It's a wasted investment if you don't look after it.

Phone or email us if you want to know more about how to improve your website's performance.
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