Here we have compiled a checklist to consider when designing your website.
- Register as many domain versions as you can to protect your business. eg: .com.au .com .net
- Your domain name should be short and easy to remember.
- Use your keywords in your domain name.
- Create and use a favicon to distinguish your business.
- Register for 5 or more years at a time.
- Use your domain name for business emails.
- Ensure your site appears consistent in multiple browsers.
- Always keep your browser’s address bar visible so visitors know where they are.
- Make sure your logo is clear and states who you are clearly.
- Always have your logo linked to the home page. People are familiar with this system.
- People are used to navigation they can access from the top of the page or from the left hand side of the page.
- Keep links to your home, contact us and about us page in a consistent location throughout your site.
- Let people know what page they are always on by having the page title obvious.
- Categorise your website if you have a lot of pages – make sure the categories are easily understood.
- Make sure you have an up to date RSS feed.
- Forget pop up windows. They are annoying, outdated and amateur.
- Any login areas should be easily accessible by your members.
- Open all external links in a new tab or window. Do not do this for internal links.
- All links should appear underlined – this is what people are used to – blue is the preferred colour.
- All the navigation on your website should be easy for people who have never visited your site before.
- Give your viewers what they came to see. Tell them why they need your products or service straight up!
- Headlines that sell or attract the reader are important on your homepage.
- Explain how you can help them and tell them how to buy from you. The benefits and features.
- Keep your content easy to understand. Don’t use jargon.
- Always write ‘you’ and not ‘I’ or ‘us’. Keep the content customer focused.
- Write short and sharply. Read through your content and remove words that don’t need to be there. Keep the sentences short and the paragraphs short. Spellcheck!
- Research your keywords and use them throughout your content.
- Always back up any statements you have made with data or references.
- Keep your link text the same size as your normal content text.
- Underline all text links.
- Don’t use pictures or images as links alone – always have the text link with them.
- Links must tell the reader what they will get when they click the link.
- Don’t overcrowd your page with too many links. Leave decent gaps between links.
Your About Us Page
- This page shows people who you are and what you do. Explaining what the business does here is appropriate but you should also place some personal biographies here about you or your employees.
- Tell the reader what they need to know about you and your business to feel comfortable buying your products or services.
- You can post any job opportunities or business news on the about us page too.
Your Contact Us Page
- All the required contact information should be readily available here. Phone, mobile, fax, website address, social media addresses and links, email addresses and any forms you wish people to contact you through.
- Some inquiries are asked over and over so think about setting up a Frequently Asked Questions page where readers can see if the question they need answered is there.
- A location map and directions can be shown here to help people find your premises.
- Your hours of operation.
Your Privacy Settings
- Provide easy access to these pages. Write the information clearly and succinctly.
- Make the information easy to read and understand.
- Explain clearly your privacy policies and how the information you collect is used and stored.
- Explain how this information is protected.