Web design is an art, and like other forms of art such as paintings, musical pieces, etc., its creation will be highly dependent on culture and target audience.
It can help a business thrive with great user experience, and perish as a result of poor usability and aesthetics.
Maintaining a website is not always an easy task often tedious and can be potentially quite time-consuming.
Some people simply don’t have the time or the patience to learn everything from scratch, some believe that they need to know programming to keep their website up to date.
As of May 2015 there are around 858 million registered hostnames, compared to around 177 million active websites, down from a peak of around 193 million in August 2012.
Creating a website that is customer-centric and backed up by effective SEO techniques can be a challenge.
For people who want a well-built site but lack the time and skill to properly build, the best thing to do is to find a reputable web design company in your area who can provide a mix of experience, industry knowledge with a personal touch.
Why Choose A Local Web Design Company Like US?
Here at NetTonic, we provide creative, streamlined, and user-friendly website design that companies want to use. Hey look, we’re local too, based in our home town of Bedford, located right in the heart of England, less than an hour’s drive from London.
We know small business all too well because it’s not only who we are but also forms the majority of our client base.
On a side note: if you’re local to us (or near Bedford), feel free to stop by our office for a face-to-face visit. We love meeting our clients in person and offer a good solid handshake.
Our team of graphic designers and programmers pride themselves on supporting industry best practices being innovative and versed in applying design styles that have been tested and proven to work.
We want to make websites work for our clients without them having to worry or stress about their performance online.
Website Design Consideration Process
Choosing the right website design company to help with your new build or rebrand is often difficult. Try these simple steps to make the process easier (for the both of us).
Step 1 – Pick a Purpose
When you decide to create a new site, make sure that it has one main purpose: to sell something, to entertain people, to inform people, to connect people, etc. We’ve seen too many new websites try to take on too many initial goals, therefore pulling their websites in different directions, effectively inhibiting growth.
If you’d like to create a site for a new company, then you’re most likely going to want to focus on ramping up the visuals and information in your site. If, on the other hand, you want to set up a paid blog, then apart from content development, you’d also need SEO techniques to help them reach the intended users better. See the SEO section below to get some better information on why it matters.
The initial consultation with potential clients will be far more productive and can often result in reduced costs if there is a clear purpose defined.
Step 2 – Know How Much You’re Willing to Spend
In my experience, both as a client and as a web developer, the quality of work is proportional to the price it demands.
It is true, that with the advent of high quality operating systems like WordPress the cost of sites has been massively reduced. That said customers are more demanding these days so money spent during the design phase improving user experience can radically improve future conversions rates.
This, however, doesn’t mean that you should find the most expensive agency for website design. Bedford has a lot of agencies that can help you get your money’s worth. Nettonic, for example, offers supplementary services like SEO to help you maximise your site’s potential at a reasonable price.
Step 3 – Check Out Your Competition for Ideas
I always meet people telling me about an amazing idea they have that nobody else has, and with a few taps on my smartphone, I show them thousands of old, abandoned sites that prove them wrong.
It is worthy of note to reinforce trends in designs that are common but perhaps go unnoticed. The ideas you have for your site, most likely are already aligned with established sites.
When you look at websites, as we do on a daily basis you will notice that no matter what the niche design elements of modern websites have become very similar.
Why? As consumers, we know what we like and do not like change. Sites should be simple and easy to navigate, offer something different which proves difficult may set a trend but more likely increase your bounce rate.
Step 4 – Strive for Transparency
It’s quite frustrating to have to send or receive revision requests for a website. While I find that minor revisions are normal, (like additional contact information, font size increase, etc.) major revisions like changing the whole template or content can be a time-wasting headache that could have been avoided by making sure that the project details are clear on both sides.
As the client, you have to make sure that you know what the agency plans on doing and how long they’re planning to do it.
In the end, you have to strive to balance out your ideas and the web designers’ talent – neither should choke out the other.
It’s a good idea to ask the agency about their timeline (though some don’t have a rigid timeline) and methodologies so you know when to expect an output and when to give inputs.
The design process can sometimes be like a conveyor belt, and when you forget to attach a part in a particular step, it becomes impossible to do so in the remainder of the steps without causing a huge bottleneck in the whole process.
Step 5 – Prioritise Content
Too many agencies focus on making eye-popping animations and user interfaces, SEO, and other added features of a site without actually making quality content.
I’ve seen sites filled with bright, vivid imagery, loud, custom fonts, and obtrusive animations, but unfortunately riddled with trite, rehashed content. Have you ever bookmarked a site that contains bad content but is beautifully designed?
Chances are search engines like Google have pushed them further down their search rankings before you even get to them. While design and marketing techniques do help visitors get a good first impression, quality content is what makes them stay.
Search engines are also getting smarter, they know which sites the user enters and stays in, and which sites the user just enters and immediately leaves.
Step 6 – Create a Realistic Timeline of Milestones
A philosophy I have when creating a site is that I’m not just typing code; I’m creating a new world for people to explore. That world, first and foremost, has to be self-sustaining, meaning that at the very least, it has to pay for its existence.
To know whether a site is or will be self-sustaining, timelines and metrics have to be in place.
I find that creating a purpose-oriented goal helps me create a good timeline for the milestones I’d like to reach. It’s a given that you want to have more site traffic and get to first page of every search engine’s search results, but these are not the type of goals that can entice you to lose a couple of hours from dreamland.
A great example of a purpose-oriented goal is Bill Gates’ dream, which is to have a computer in every home. Within that dream, he had concrete steps that he needed to achieve within a certain period before somebody else beats him to his dream.
It’s a good idea to ask your agency about the tools they have to help you measure your site’s performance so that you can make a clear roadmap to your goal. At the very least, it should be able to tell you whether you’re getting your money’s worth or not.
Step 7 – Stay Connected
Good agencies like Nettonic don’t just leave as soon as your site is up and running – they stay and help you reach your milestones.
Some agencies are no longer of any help to their clients after a few days or weeks since the site launch, therefore, it’s important to ask your agency about their current clients and what they’re doing to help those clients with their sites – how do they address bugs and how quickly are they addressed?
Success, you have a fantastic New Website – What Next?
While we’ve helped many local companies in Bedford with web design, we’ve also helped our clients realise the need to focus on proper marketing strategies.
The competition online is tough and they need to undertake steps to make their brands stand out in the dense cyber jungle.
Your website is your shop window, it may be the most aesthetically pleasing but if it is not being found growth will follow.
NetTonic are different, we do not just build websites then forget about you….we provide marketing insights and advice to promote your brand and improve visitor engagement.
Our marketing services include:
Search Engine Optimisation Increases Your Brand Viewability For Those Looking For You!
SEO is integral in any website, regardless of what you’re trying to accomplish. The purpose of SEO is to have the most well web-mastered and organised website that the search engines and people love.
The contents of your site draw readers and potential customers to your brand. But, with the multitude of websites fighting for their attention, you have to learn how to strategize and make your web content more visible on Google. SEO will help to keep your website organised in a common sense type of way that your visitors will be able to better navigate. This can mean a huge difference in getting the sale, or contact form fill or phone call.
SEO is still important in 2016 and needs to be a vital element of your marketing strategy.
Whether you have an existing website, looking to rebrand or are just starting up, we would welcome an opportunity to chat. Please contact us or take a moment to look over our SEO marketing page.
Pay Per Click Marketing Is Affected By Your Good/Poor Designed Landing Pages
The articles that you write have the power to attract clients. Quality is more important than quantity. Still, even if you have quality content, you could still be in a tough competition finding it hard to compete.
One of the ways to kick your site is to employ the Google Adwords or Bing Ad Center pay-per-click systems. NetTonic can do this for you using our elaborate array of website tools and PPC ninja skills.
When you place an ad on your site and users click them, both you and the advertiser get a percentage of the remuneration. The PPC strategy is also beneficial for you, especially when you may not yet have a lot of readers and you want the right people to visit and explore your website.
Pay-Per-Click cannot be very successful without the right kind of landing page and web design. We’ve taken the landing page, or sometimes known as conversion pages, to the highest level. These pages are critical to not only have the right content, but the right calls-to-action to make sure your visitors turn into your customers. When you’re spending money just to get visitors to your website, you want the chances to have them complete the goal as high as possible. Your well-designed landing pages will make a difference. Web design is often all about the conversion factor.
Social Media Marketing Plays a Role in Trust Factors
There are a variety of social media platforms on the Web right now – you have the propensity and the power to disseminate information through Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. You can also create videos and podcasts to further promote your brand. These social media platforms are perfect venues for sharing your news, and other interesting stuff about your product or service.
At NetTonic, we take care of managing your social media content. Doing this alone may be taxing and time consuming, we can help by providing a team who can take up the strain with a combination of content sharing, participation growth, and social listening.
Social Media plays a larger role in helping your customers and clients to connect with you, keep up with your news, as well as learn more about the industry. This has long been seen as a subconscious sign of trust. Trust factors on a website make all the difference. When you consider that we are web design specialists located in Bedford – having your website perform for you is considered our greatest feat.
Web development, brand awareness, and trust are highly correlated with successful websites. Just like the way readers judge the book by its cover, so do potential client’s judge a brand through its web design. Giving the right message initially will not only interest your visitors but help to convince them to complete the goals you’ve set out for them. SEO, PPC, Social Media marketing and web design all work hand in hand. We feel like being able to speak with you is important, so we’ve proven to so many people that a web design company in Bedford is your best bet!
Don’t let web design kill your brand or revenue making potential, or poor marketing result in all your hard work being wasted.