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StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article

3 Major Benefits of Effective Web Design

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article
Photo courtesy of Pexels

Web design is about so much more than creating a pretty looking store space. Of course, every brand needs an aesthetically pleasing web page. But there are several key aspects of web design that can make the difference between your online business excelling and prospering or it falling flat on its face in the first year of operation. Remember, the success of any E-commerce company relies heavily on the brand’s visual presentation: this forms the majority of what potential consumers know about you. So make it effective. Here are five benefits of well-managed web design.

Creation of a Consistent Brand Identity

Brand identity is essential to create the impression of a consistent, reliable company. Most people are prone to mulling over the appearance of one aspect of their business at a time. First a logo. Then perhaps a font. Then a color scheme. This is likely to form a rather mish mash aesthetic when all of the different aspects are put together. Professional web designers such as Ignite Digital, however, look at the bigger picture from the start of their projects. They will have an idea of how absolutely every part of your business is going to fit into their design scheme, whether it’s web pages, affiliated blogs, business cards or advertising. Always bear in mind that one, stable and reliable image is bound to make a much more positive and lasting impression in consumers’ minds than five different images that appear as though they could appear to five different companies.

Drawn Out Pageviews

Yes, you want to bring plenty of traffic to your site, so clicks are important. But you don’t make any profit from individuals who click your homepage and leave straight away. You need to keep people on your page, browsing different areas and perusing different collections and products to see your traffic convert into sales and profit. In a world saturated with web pages and web vendors, it will take something pretty impressive to encourage an audience to stay on your page for longer than a few seconds. So collaborate with experienced designers to create an eye catching and engaging homepage.

Content Form and Structure

You need to ensure that your products and collections are presented to internet users in their best light. You want your customer to feel confident enough in the product to invest their hard earned cash in it. Effective web design can help with this. Options such as zoom or rotation on product images, links to sizing information, delivery options and terms and conditions and well-placed product descriptions in an easy to read font all go down a storm with consumers. You also want products displayed on individual pages, allowing customers to focus on the item they’ve clicked separately to all of your other stock. The key to a successful site is simple navigation and minimalism.

These are just three of the benefits that effective web design can bring to your brand. Needless to say, there are plenty more. So get started on creating a brilliant business web page.

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article

Freelancers, Here’s How To Put Your Website To The Test

Being a freelancer means relying on your website to bring in customers – it’s your main source of income. For any business, big or small, a website is a vital marketing tool. However, for freelancers it’s more than that – as a freelancer, your website is the heart of your business, which is why it’s so vital to ensure that it’s as effective as possible. The question is, of course, how can you do that – how can you determine how successful your business website is? Use our guide below to determine if your website is as effective and as successful as you think it is…

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article
Photo courtesy of Pixabay

Utilize objective feedback

A simple way to determine whether your website is as effective as it could be is to utilize objective feedback. There are many options for getting this feedback, with one of the best ones being AB testing – this is where an objective group of people are shown multiple versions of a website or page and choose the one that they like the best. There are several benefits of AB testing, including being able to get a better idea of what you could consider changing and what you should ensure stays the same. The fact is that when it comes to ensuring that your website is as well-designed as possible, objective feedback is key.

Monitor your site’s traffic

The number of visitors that your website gets is a good indication of how effective your website is as a marketing resource. Think of your website like a shop window for your products and services – for your business to be a success, your website needs to be as appealing as possible and get plenty of traffic. Monitor your overall traffic using Google Analytics or another similar tool and take note of when there are dips and spikes in your page views and cross reference them to days, times, and anything else that may be relevant.

Track new vs. returning users

Using monitoring software like Google Analytics, you can track your new vs. returning visitors. Usually, websites tend to have more new visitors than returning ones, which is perfectly fine. However, if your site has predominantly more new users than returning ones, this could indicate that your site isn’t quite right and needs some changes making to it.

Note down conversion rates

A vital part of working as a freelancer is determining the conversion rate of your website. If you allow for your services to be ordered online, you can track how many users made purchases and how many abandoned their shopping carts mid-purchase. This kind of data demonstrates how user-friendly your site is, and whether you need to focus on improving usability. If your site isn’t easy to use and navigate, the fact is that your customers will go elsewhere – it’s as simple as that.

Determining how successful your website is, is no easy task, as there are lots of factors to take into account. Hopefully, however, the advice above will help to make the process of measuring your website’s effectiveness a little easier for you.

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article

Ways to Improve Your Website’s Navigation

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article
Photo courtesy of Pixabay

There’s no point taking the time to create a website for your business if you don’t also take the time to ensure that the site is easy for your visitors to find their way around.

Good web design answers the important questions about your business and what it’s about, and that means that your website’s navigation needs to be spot on if you’re going to convince visitors to become customers. Unfortunately, so many businesses, of all shapes and sizes, get it wrong.

Here are some simple things you can do to improve the navigation of your website and make it a whole lot easier for visitors to access the information they require, make purchases, and get in touch:

Plan, Plan, Plan

Before you even think about working on your company website, sit down and plan its content and navigation. Create a flowchart that shows the direction you want visitors to take through your website and the main areas that you’d like to draw their attention to. Pay particular attention to your website’s main navigation and the categories you want to include.

Check Out the Competition

It makes sense to see what the competition is doing if you want to get your website’s navigation right. Make a list of the 20 biggest competitors you have and make a point of going through their website like a customer. This should give you some valuable insights into good and bad navigation, which h you can then use to make your website one of the best in your niche.

Pare it Down

Ideally, if you want to make your website as simple and informative as possible, paring down the number of navigation options on offer is a good idea. The fewer options there are, the less cluttered the site will feel and the easier it will be for visitors to find exactly what they want.

Keep it Clean

Keeping your website as free of animations, auto playing videos, and sizeable images will ensure that your website loads more quickly. It will also keep distractions to a minimum so that the focus of your customers is on your content, products and services. There is nothing worse than a slow loading website to make things difficult and send potential customers away, so avoid temptation and leave those unnecessary elements out.

Make it Static

Your website’s navigation menu should stay in the same place from page to page. It shouldn’t be at the top of the homepage and the side on the about me section.

Text-Based Links

You might think that image-based links look more interesting, but they’re also more difficult for some users to find, and they don’t work as well when it comes to search engine optimization and boosting your website’s position on Google.

Use Basic Language

A lot of companies are tempted to use flowery technical language because they think it makes them look more professional, and this might well be the case, but it also makes it more confusing for their users. So, at least when it comes to menu headings and page titles keep things short and simple.

Be Very Specific

Instead of making your navigation labels general, like saying ‘services’ make them more specific like ‘divorce’ and ‘criminal law’ This will ensure your visitors find exactly what they want quickly and give you another handy SEO boost.

Avoid Drop Down Menus

If you really want to include drop down menus on your website, go ahead and do so, but be aware that a lot of users find them annoying because they can start to move around, and thus cause people to click the wrong link, and get in the way. They’re also a lot more difficult for the likes of Google to crawl, which means your website might not be as easy to find in the first place.

Include a Search Box

Including a search box right at the top of your website is a great way to help your visitors out. If despite your best efforts, they still find your website tougher to navigate than they would like, they can simply type that they’re looking for into the box and a list of options will appear.

Excellent website navigation, which enables visitors to move through your website quickly and without issue is a proven way of increasing conversion rate and boosting your website’s performance. It is vital that you take the above steps, and any others that you can think of to ensure that this is a reality for your website.

Good Luck!

Leading Your Team One Step At A Time

If you want to get far in business, one of the primary factors that you can’t afford to ignore is ensuring that your management team are as professional as possible. They are among your most important staff members, and it is vital that you hire people you think will succeed in leading your team in however they need to be led. Of course, there are always certain characteristics which you will need to look out for if you want your team to be led well, and it is worth looking into what those are. Let’s have a look at some of the more important qualities now, so that you can help to lead your teams as well as possible.

StrategyDriven Management and Leadership Article
Photo courtesy of Pexels

Confidence To Lead

People will generally have a much easier time following someone if they appear to have the confidence to lead. This is something that you can’t really overlook when you are thinking of who should lead your teams. You probably don’t want to put in charge someone who is unable to display confidence in front of groups of people. However, it is also true that sometimes less confident people have better ideas. It seems fair to try and draw a balance, and not to immediately dismiss those who might not be strongly confident in comparison to others. Confidence, after all, is something which can be learned, and it is good to give people the chance to prove themselves. Sometimes, you find real gems this way, and it favors your business massively in the long run.

Cool Head In Emergencies

Being prepared for the worst is a good idea in business generally and in leaders in particular. No matter what happens, you need to be able to know that your management team will be able to properly deal with it. It is therefore a good idea to choose managers who appear to have a cool head, and who would continue to do so in an emergency situation. There are all kinds of emergencies which can crop up in business, and preparing for as many of them as possible always puts you in a good stead. You’ll find that your managers are more adept at remaining calm particularly if you have a number of good emergency procedures in place – get business insurance online, have a risk assessment done, coincide with all safety laws. This all helps, and your management will probably appreciate it.

StrategyDriven Management and Leadership Article
Photo courtesy of Pexels

Easygoing Communication

The ability to communicate well with others is always going to be paramount for your management staff. When you can communicate strongly, it means that you are more likely to get things done properly and on time, and it also means that relationships in the working culture can be developed much more easily and fluently. Make sure your managers are all the kind of people that other can talk to easily – this really does make a world of difference when it comes to getting things done on a daily basis, and creating a positive working culture.

StrategyDriven Talent Management Article

Harmony vs Chaos: Keep Employees on the Same Page

StrategyDriven Talent Management Article
Photo courtesy of Pixabay

Making sure everyone in your business is on the page shouldn’t be seen as mere courtesy. When everyone is on the same page, then it becomes much easier for business to go smoothly! You want everyone working in some sort of harmony, in order to fight off the chaos that big business projects can often bring.

Employees are your strongest asset, but you’re doing them a disservice if communication and collaboration isn’t that strong in your business. Here are a few tips you should keep in mind.

Contribution

If employees don’t feel all that involved in certain aspects of the business, then it’s going to be more difficult for them to really engage as deeply as you want them to. One of the best ways to encourage professional harmony in the workplace is to get more employees involved in the planning process of a particular project, or even in its inception. Of course, you have to balance this with the risk of having too many cooks in the kitchen – this approach may stretch out the planning process. It could benefit the project in the long run, though.

Collaboration

The easier it is to collaborate, the more people you’re going to get on the same page. Thankfully, there’s a bunch of software and web applications you can use to facilitate this. SharePoint, a Microsoft Office feature, is currently gaining popularity in this area. It’s relatively new to many people, however, so consider working with a consultancy business such as HingePoint to help people get used to things. There’s also suites such as Google Drive, communication programs such as Skype and Google Hangouts, and project management web apps such as Trello and Basecamp that are all recommended.

StrategyDriven Talent Management Article
Photo courtesy of Phil Whitehouse via Wikimedia

Documentation

Whether it be documents detailing the goals of the project or notes taken from meetings, keeping strong documentation of the project is pretty essential. When people get a little lost, they can refer to a central piece of information – such as a project bible – to help them get back on track and see what the particular aims and expectations are. This is also very useful for instances in which employees are late, have to take a sick day, and return from vacation. You should make sure that these documents are kept up-to-date, too; they shouldn’t be static texts. After all, things are probably going to change a few times on a given project!

Sociability

A lot of business owners see encouraging sociability to be something quite peripheral to work. They want to keep things friendly in the office, though they also know that these good vibes can also increase satisfaction, which helps drive productivity and focus. But encouraging sociability really helps in a very direct way when it comes to people being on the same page at the workplace. When bonds grow between employees, they don’t only talk about private or trivial matters – they also begin to talk about work more frankly, and become more enthusiastic to offer each other help. So arranging after-work social events, as well as allowing employees a bit of space to talk casually from time to time, can help your business more than you might think.