Effective web design is the central element of digital marketing, from which strategies are developed for other delivery platforms, which include search, social media marketing, mobile, and email marketing. How the site is designed is crucial in terms of a web page being ranked by search engines and subsequently found on the Internet. Once a prospective customer is on the site, it is important it is easy to navigate the site and find out what she or he want.
Determine the objectives for your website
Most websites fall into two basic categories: informational and transactional. As the name implies informational websites are those that provide information without purchase a product or service. Transactional websites can be for e-commerce or in the case of a not-profit for donations.
Types and Categories of Websites
Other websites categorie, range from social media such as Facebook, microblogging platforms including Twitter and Tumblr, Corporate blog or individual blogs to Fortune 500 businesses. Website designed and developed in today's digital age, has changed beyond recognition since the introduction of smartphones and other mobile devices. Businesses and web developers are getting extremely sophisticated; about content, design, usability, and accessibility, aided by modern Integrated Development Environments, IDE editors and development languages, which have enabled the level of creativity never seen before.
The web being a leading avenue of business, places every site is on the same street, marketing to the same customers. Today’s buyers have little or no patience for poorly designed websites such as slow page loading or clumsy navigation. Imagine marketing to the same customers where all shops are situated on the same street. To successfully deliver in such intense competitive environment, requires preparedness to deliver beyond customer expectations.
Important Components of Website Design
All components within your website must produce exceptional results to new customers or supporting existing customers by providing general up-to-date information about products and services. Most successful websites have the above long-term approach. These days it is rear to find a website that is not selling anything, from non-profitable organisations to microblogging site, all have some sort of online shopping cart, providing customers with a means of ordering goods and services.
Progressive Enhancement and Responsive Web Design
Let us say, we are designing business website, could be an ecommerce site encompassing online transactions, packing and shipping. Early, during the design phase, it is crucial to incorporate a series of best practices in your design process such as mobile first, progressive enhancement and responsive web design, to build a usable website, meaning visually appealing, cross-browser compatible, easily indexed by search engines, accessible and a well-defined marketing plan. Also, your marketing plan and web development should go hand in hand in identifying the main objectives for building the website. Your web development process should incorporate a definitive marketing plan.
Website design and website promotion is a continuous process. A well-designed website is the core of your online marketing, the focus of all marketingcommunications, a single most visible and used resource. Therefore, all other business tools of marketing communication including print, media advertising, sales promotions, direct mail and events should be complementry to the online marketing, where customers are directed to the website for further information or to close the sale. In this way, you become truly marketing-orientated and deliver value to your prospective customers. All thorough well-designed website is a strong promotional tool. For a reliable site design, a look at few important design considerations is the right way to start.
Web Design and Accessibility
W3C defines “web accessibility” as websites, tools, and technologies designed and developed so that people with disabilities can use them. Hence, through web accessibility, people with disabilities can perceive, understand, navigate, and interact with the web. Improved organisation of the information in your site has the strongest association with user satisfaction, followed by layout, personalisation, search and performance. Website usability influences the user satisfaction. I strongly disagree with notion that web designers should focus more on the web design attributes, regardless of the personal characteristics of their users, to improve the usability and user satisfaction of websites. I do disagree with above assumption, simply because website usability itself has a significant impact on user satisfaction. Accessible design creates website that is usable by those with disabilities (screen readers for example, make webpages accessible for those with visual impairments), but is not limited to, people with disabilities. Universal web accessibility helps you create a site, which is usable by the widest, most diverse audience, rather than creating solutions that might benefit one group at the expense of another.
Users understand how to interact with pages and apps that use familiar design patterns, however, there should be a balance between the new and the familiar. The value of your website lies in the ability to connect helpful information, both on the site and on the Internet. Therefore, flawlessly navigation makes it easy for your users to find the information they need. Action options could include registering or signing up for a newsletter, finding updated product information, conducting an immediate purchase, referring a friend to the website, or completing a questionnaire.
Social Media integration for Social Media marketing. It is no longer a question of whether to integrate social media marketing components in your design, but rather which social media channels, are best suited to your prospective customers. Social media can be grouped into three major categories. Social networking (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn), social bookmarking and news (Reddit, Delicious, Digg, StumbleUpon), media sharing and social content (YouTube, Rumble, Flickr, SlideShare) just to mention a few. However, it can be time-consuming and expensive adding new content to your site as well as updates to various social media accounts. Including in your design, components that can automate social media posting and updates, as you are entering content on your website is wonderful idea that can save time and revenue. There are also, social media tools that allow copying posting to other social media accounts, thereby, speeding up the update process.
Assuming your buyers can access content only one way, can this have its drawbacks? Instead of usually long text product descriptions, buyers may want know how bits and pieces fit together. This means that from the outset, your design could incorporate features such as video description of the product, box contents, how to assemble and disassemble.
Features that add value to a website
Accessibility is not just about meeting code, content and design requirements, but also about incorporating helpful features that add value for your buyers, including disabled buyers and allowing such buyers to get to the content they want more quickly. Most ecommerce websites incorporate "products similar to the current one" that cuts down on the amount of effort it takes buyers to find new or similar products.
Create content that others sites would want to link. Whether interested sites link to you on their own accord or whether you actively seek a link from them, your site content needs to be one that important site gladly link to it. In other words, make sure that you have something of value to offer such as compelling good content. That is the most important step for getting any great inbound links.
Building an opt-in e-mail list
By e-mail list, I do not mean unsolicited e-mail advertising (spam), but opt-in subscribers. E-mail list of people interested in your products, or services remains a cornerstone of your marketing plan. You should have more than five opt-ins to create opportunities for subscribers to join the mailing list. You can integrate a subscribe box just about anywhere in a website. The best regions of your website are footer, headers, sidebar, under each blog post, because no one will intentionally try to find the e-mail list.
Mobile phone and Tablet Accessibility
Mobile devices have revolutionised the way users interact with the web more importantly for the disabled users. Mobile devices open the door to a new level of interactions for all users including the disabled. People with disabilities use wireless devices including mobile phone and tablet where, screen readers are commonly used on mobile devices. The options on mobile hardware platforms are similar in many ways to the desktop. Given the portability of the Smartphones, there are exciting opportunities to engage prospective consumers through mobile marketing.Click Here
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