As almost everyone knows, not all websites are created equal. While building a website is a great first step for any new business, simply having an existing website isn’t enough. Instead, you need to know how to optimize it in a way that will drive traffic, increase brand awareness, and ultimately result in revenue.
Jeremy D. Rackley, the founder and managing partner of JC Marketing in Brooklyn is here to provide his expertise on the subject. He worked as a UX/Visual Designer at Google ( News — Alert) for over 10 years, before opening up his own marketing firm focused on building quality websites for clients. He provides his top four tips for building a successful website.
Focus on Design
When Jeremy D. Rackley first founded JC Marketing, he knew that he needed a team of designers. Why? Because you simply can’t build a quality website without them. Specifically, the design of a website is something that all businesses must prioritize. For example, when building a website, you want to make sure that the design incorporates original photos that speak to your brand. One of the first things you should do is delete any stock imagery or text that may be part of the website template you’re using. Further, you want to make sure that you choose a website design that flows and will naturally guide the user where you want them to go. While having a sleek website that is on brand is of the utmost important, website design goes far beyond how a website looks. It includes factors like responsiveness. Incorporating a responsive design into your website is critical in this day and age. Having a responsive website ensures that it can be viewed from any type of screen. This is especially important in 2020, when people frequently click on website links from their smartphones and tablets, in addition to their laptops or desktop computers. If your website isn’t responsive, it’s likely going to experience some formatting issues when viewed on a smartphone or tablet and this not only looks unprofessional but can hinder business.
Jeremy D. Rackley’s second tip for building a successful website for your business is to prioritize speed. Too often he has witnessed businesses prioritize design over everything else and this is a huge mistake. Even if you have the most beautiful looking website in the world, no one is going to bother looking through it if it takes too long to load. Slow loading times or issues with viewing the website on mobile devices or tablets will ultimately lead to less website traffic, which can mean less revenue for your business. Studies have shown that the majority of people will leave a site if it takes more than three seconds to load. With this in mind, speed should be a top priority when creating your website. Minimizing redirects, optimizing images, and using a content delivery network are just a few ways that you can speed up your website. However, you choose to go about it, make sure your engineering team knows that the speed of your website is not to be compromised.
Engaging visitors is key to keeping them on your website, and to converting their traffic into a sale. However, few businesses know the best ways to make their website more engaging. Of course, it partly comes down to design as mentioned above. Having attractive photos or videos, as well as an easy to navigate website will help with engagement. But you also have to think strategically about the information you want your website to provide, and what you want your call to action to be. Jeremy D. Rackley states that no one wants to be inundated with text as soon as they visit a website. That is why you need to determine which information is the most important. For example, paragraph-long testimonials are definitely a no-no. Instead, if you’d like to highlight positive customer reviews, pick two or three and pull key quotes from them. Jeremy D. Rackley claims that the shorter the text is, the more likely it is the user will read it. Pop-ups are another tool that websites can use to engage their visitors, but you must first determine what your goal is. For example, do you want the user to sign up for your newsletter, do you want them to follow you on social media, or do you want them to shop a sale or promotion you’re offering? Decide this in advance and then create a pop-up that will appear with your chosen call to action shortly after the user visits your homepage.
Don’t Forget About SEO, Says Jeremy D. Rackley
All websites must be search engine optimized in order to be successful in 2020. But search engine optimization (SEO) is more nuanced than many people think. According to Jeremy D. Rackley of JC Marketing, there are two types of SEO that all businesses should focus on when building a website: on-page SEO and off-page SEO. For those that don’t know, on-page SEO is centred on optimizing parts of your own website. In other words, on-page SEO is completely within your control, and it is what most people are familiar with. On-page SEO involves tricks like using keywords in URLs, including title tags, optimizing your website for mobile, creating webpages with at least 500 words of copy, etc… In contrast, off-page SEO focuses on increasing how authoritative or popular your website is through third party content creation and backlinks. In essence, to have good off-page SEO, you want other websites to link back to your site. People are less familiar with this type of SEO, and it is also much harder to achieve. Jeremy D. Rackley claims that the first step in improving your off-page SEO is to create quality content that others want to link to. To do this, make sure you have a good content creator or writer, such as Cinthya Garza Martinez, who works at JC Marketing. Other ways to grow your off-page SEO are to share your content on social media and hope others re-share, to partner with industry influencers who will agree to link to your website from their own, or to invite a guest blogger to write a post for your website and vice versa.
Originally published at https://www.tmcnet.com.