When designing or refreshing a website, it can be tempting to try and create something flashy, unique, and altogether memorable. And, while there is no reason why these elements can’t be incorporated – eventually – it is essential that the primary consideration is always the needs of the audience. What do they want from your website, how can you give it to them, and what will get them to come back again and again? You only have one chance to make a strong first impression when it comes to your website design, so make it count.
Who are you targeting?
All business owners have a rough idea of the people they want to reach, but few take the time to really dig deep and get a robust understanding of exactly who they should be appealing to, and how it can be done. One of the best ways of doing this is by designing personas; this means acknowledging the pain points and challenges of your audience, and subsequently showcasing why you have the skills, knowledge, products or services to offer them adequate answers or resolutions.
What should your website offer
The main thing that all websites should be is intuitive. The last thing a consumer wants is to have to scroll and search for the information they are seeking. Make the website simple yet sleek. Don’t overwhelm people with unnecessary options; make sure they can see exactly what your company does, and then use visuals and content to convince them that you are superior to your competition.
Of course, this approach of targeting your audience should not just be limited to your website. All of your marketing and advertising collateral – be that social media posts, newsletters, emails, banners, ads – must appeal directly to your audience. It sounds obvious, but you’d be surprised how many organisations decide upon an idea or concept simply because they like the sound of it, rather than because they’ve considered what impact they would like it to have. You can have the most visually stunning marketing campaign in the world, but if the messaging isn’t right, or you end up appealing to the wrong people, it won’t be a success.
Put your audience first, and success will follow.