Published 14 January 2013
What makes a good website?
A synergy of purpose, design, content and success
A good website has a purpose. It’s important to have clear objectives when planning a website, is the aim of the website to sell something, or to provide information? Or is it to promote a business or organisation?
Before any design takes place, it is important to be clear and to understand what our objectives are and what are our expectations?
Once we know what message our website is meant to communicate, we can then focus on the design, a very important area of what we like to term as ‘human optimisation’.
There is actually a science behind making a website work and meeting expectations. As long as you have the purpose of the website established, the design will be clear. Colours, style, page elements and consistency are all important in driving up the conversion rate.
Content is king, we cannot stress this enough. The best speeches in the world were delivered with the utmost simplicity. Each page needs a purpose or a goal.
The page title needs to be clear, the description needs to match the title, the content needs to reflect the description and the content needs to hit the goal.
The content has to be written with the correct tone of voice and that tone needs to be consistent within all areas of the companies online and offline marketing.
Website navigation. Like any journey, when we know where we are going, we can then enjoy the journey. The same applies to a website.
It’s important to have a well-structured navigation system, whether it is menus or links taking you to the various sections. If the users cannot navigate around your site quickly and easily finding the purpose of their visit, they will click on to someone else’s website.
Usability. We no longer surf the internet on our PC’s or laptops at home, we browse the internet in many ways using smartphones, tablets, netbooks, laptops, large format displays as well as competing browsers such as Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari, Chrome, the list is endless.
Your website needs to work on all of these platforms; otherwise you are only targeting a small percentage of users and then trying to convert within that small starting percentage.
Search engine optimisation is the final flourish to any successful website. Once all the above elements have been superbly tackled and the finished website is ready to launch, organic traffic might be the most cost effective form of marketing that site and helping to convert business.
If the website has been written well, the search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing, will favour it well and push it higher up the search results. You are more likely to get visitors to your website if it appears on page one, and even more so in the top three search results.