As the world has changed in the blink of an eye, so has the way we market to consumers. Now, more than ever, your website exists as BY FAR THE MOST IMPORTANT doorway to your brand and your brand experience. While stores stay shut, and face-to-face interaction is vastly limited, brands will rely on reaching their target audiences via their websites. Therefore, your website is mission-critical to your success.
Bluetext has published a 5 part blog series to help you think about and pressure test if your website is the best it can be.
In a digitally-driven age, professionally designed websites have become the standard across any industry. Website aesthetics, functionality and navigability will make or break a business. Research has shown that 48% of people cited website design as the number one indicator of credibility. Designing a beautiful and functional website, however, is not as easy as it looks. While various content management systems (CMS), such as WordPress or Drupal, promise to deliver beginner-friendly DIY capability, website design is a trade best left to the experts. Here are Bluetext’s top five reasons for hiring a website design agency.
- Brand Consistency
You’ve likely invested a lot of time and money into developing a brand identity. Don’t let your digital brand style become muddled and mismatched across your website. A website design agency can ensure that font faces, sizing and color schemes remain consistent throughout the entire site. Not only does design consistency make a greater impact on brand recognition, but it will also improve readability and hold your audience’s attention for longer.
A website design agency will also build smart CSS into all of your digital ecosystem front end codebases. Agencies will consider organization and consistency when building out your CSS. Gone are the days where your headings are a disorganized range of sizes, font faces, and colors. Bluetext is a website design agency that provides clients with a web style guide, which translates all traditional brand style guidelines into digitally compatible requirements.
Before a Bluetext website redesign, the Mindtree homepage was inconsistent with no clear brand identity. Now the entire website follows a web style guidelines for on-brand font faces, sizing, and coloring.
- Resist Template Temptation
Because a CMS can offer an overwhelmingly wide variety of templates, it’s easy to be drawn toward super-stylized options. In practice, though, simplicity is key.
Overcrowding is the most common mistake made on webpages and is a leading cause of high bounce rates. An overly complex template will bog down your users with unnecessary functionalities, and cause slow loading times. You should first determine the purpose of each page and let that guide template choice, as aesthetic elements can always be added later by designers. A website design agency will be able to select the templates that best serve your business needs and flow into a seamless customer journey.
- Design Mobile-ly Minded
In web design, the user is king. The tell-tale sign of a sloppily designed site is an incompatibility with different browsers and screen sizes. With the millennial and Gen Z markets so dependent on mobile, your site needs to be mobile responsive, not just mobile-friendly.
Mobile-friendly designs will feature static content, typically with smaller image displays and simplified navigation. On the other hand, mobile-responsive websites will dynamically adjust content and images to different screen sizes by correcting the padding and condensing navigation. While web amateurs may be satisfied with mobile-friendly, any experienced design agency will develop a responsive site that projects credibility. An experienced website design agency will conduct thorough quality assurance (QA) across different browsers and devices to ensure the customer experience is kept consistent.
An agency can not only make your pages attractive on mobile but can also optimize the performance of your site. Using AMP (Amplified Mobile Pages), a website design agency will build an open-source, stripped-down HTML that accelerates page speed. AMP is like a secret weapon for mobile sites, but it requires expertise to properly implement strict HTML and tagging requirements.
To learn more about the benefits of AMP, check out this video:
- Easy navigation
Your site navigation should be simple and easy to use. If a user can’t quickly and easily find what they’re looking for, then you’ve got a problem. A concise but comprehensive menu bar will make all the difference. A website design agency can bring a new perspective to your sitemap and make recommendations that ensure navigation is intuitive to any new visitor.
Search functionality is also key to a great user experience. A website design agency can be trusted to tag your content and properly link any searched keyword to the correct site pages. With an easily accessible search bar, users can quickly navigate toward desired content. By working with a website design agency, you can also include top features, such as previous searches and suggested searches based on the user’s previous experience on the site, improving the overall user experience.
- Easy maintenance
So you’ve built your website, what’s next? Surely your business has growth in mind, and your site will need to keep pace. Using an agency can build flexible and adaptable web design, and help sustain your site for long term growth. With a website designed by experts, you will find it easier to maintain your website and update it with the newest and latest content.
Lesson Learned: Save the DIY motivation for home renovations. Building a website is best left to an experienced website design agency.