We all know website design takes skill, time and a lot of effort from different teams: developers, UX designers, marketing team and executive team. In the end the website represents your brand and is the face of the company, quite literally. But still, majority of people still forget what their website’s main purpose actually is. Nowadays this is usually to sell products or services, yet many websites seem like someone intentionally neglected this main functionality. They create beautiful and technically advanced websites that don’t always work. Read about 5 things to keep in mind when designing your site so that it works from the marketing perspective:
The purpose of your website should be displayed prominently and clearly from your homepage. What do you do should be evident to every user that comes to your site. Yes, we all agree that we like beautiful designs and interesting non-conventional websites, but if you put that first, you are wasting your resources. If you distract your user with advanced animations, too many sliders, moving images and the more and more popular background videos, they will either leave your page super fast or become very frustrated before they even get excited about your product or brand. A good comparison is here: example of a very beautiful but distracting/confusing site, whereas if you compare to an example of a more functional design here. Simple and functional will always win hearts and customers (because they will find that Order Now button).
This one is pretty straight forward, as your site should be, remember? 🙂 Make sure users know how to navigate your site. Don’t hide menus and navigation behind fancy animation and unfit colour schemes. Don’t make people scroll for hours to reach a button or a social icon. Make it clear what they should do next.
You need tons of data to be able to evaluate your marketing efforts on your website, so plan for appropriate tracking before you start designing your site. And not only tracking, think of the correct tracking implementation and setup, all the different pixels you will need to have on the site and how to add them all properly. Think of referral data and how you will lose a lot of that if your site is not SSL. Think of implementing heatmap tracking from the get-go (eg. Hotjar) and of course most importantly – think of your data attribution models. We will have a separate blog post only on this topic soon!
Last but not least, your website must be build as a conversion machine. Regardless of how you drive traffic to your website (inbound, outbound), once you get visitors on there you shouldn’t let them go too easily. An interesting comparison we once heard is that driving traffic to your site without capturing it, is like running tap water with no cup to catch it.
So consider different call-to-actions across the entire site, contact forms, prominently displayed action buttons, etc. Also consider this – if the user came to your portfolio page, will they be interested in downloading/receiving a Case Study in return for their e-mail address? Or if a user came to the shipping order page and moved their mouse towards closing the page, would they stayed if you offered them free shipping?