In the world of website design, small businesses occasionally commit one of the Seven Deadly Sins when creating their web presence. A good small business web design firm will make sure that these sins are not committed on your site.
Sin #1: Using a free web service with a no-name URL instead of owning a specific domain name for the company.
Many small businesses attempt to cut costs by hosting their web page on a free site like Anglefire or Geocities. Most people who search for businesses on the Internet are suspicious of businesses that do not own their own domain name in some form. If your company name is “Joe’s Tires” and “joestires.com” is not available, try some variations like “joes-tires.com” or “joestires.net.” Customers will be forgiving if you do not have the latest and greatest “.com” domain name – more so than if you are trying to run a business website from a free hosting service.
Sin #2: Slow Loading Site Pages
User do not like pages that load slowly in the browser. But that’s not the only problem! Google now penalizes sites by demoting their page rank for sites that contain slow loading pages. Make sure your site loads quickly or users will simply hit the back button and bounce back to the search results to find another, similar business.
Sin #3: Lack of Images and Design
Customers do not like to view a site that is all text and no pictures. Make sure that your site is eye appealing as well as informative.
Sin #4: Lack of or a Hidden Phone Number
Make sure your phone number is easy to find on your business site. Many users locate your site JUST to find your phone number. How frustrating if they find you on the web to get your phone number, and they can’t find the number anywhere on your site.
Sin #5: Multimedia on Your Home Page
Just because you can, doesn’t mean that its a good idea. One example of this is putting a video or music on your home page. Some users do not want to, or cannot, view or listen to your great multimedia presentation and clicking a link in Google search results only to be assaulted by unwanted videos and sound will send users running back to the search results. Also consider that some users are on prepaid broadband cards. When they access multimedia, this often bleeds time off of their cards.
Sin #6: Downtime
Make sure that your site is up and running at all times. Nothing irritates users more than navigating to a site that is down. They wonder if you are still in business or if you care that your site is down.
Sin #7: Site UN-Usability
Usability basically means the ease of use of your site. Make sure that novice users know exactly how to navigate your site without instructions.
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