Having a website is essential for every business and designing one is very simple these days.
Surprisingly, there was a time when creating a few pages on the web required hiring a highly experienced front-end development team and it cost hundreds of thousands if not millions of naira (in some cases).
Those days are long gone.
Now with the advent of Content management systems (CMS) like WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, etc., and $60 templates, even a complete novice can create a decent business website. When you use drag-and-drop platforms like WIX, the whole process of website design becomes an easy cruise.
However, while designing a website is easy, designing a website that generates tangible results (i.e. new customers, new members, engagement, etc.) is no picnic.
It requires experience. And lots of education.
While experience is something you can’t read up in a book, but I’d attempt to close the knowledge gap with this blog post based on my 10+ years of experience in web development in Nigeria.
So how do you ensure that the website you create is going to generate positive results?
There are 3 simple but extraordinary secret tips I’m going to reveal to you.
The first tip is for you to;
- Have a measurable and quantifiable primary goal before you start creating a website
Your website shouldn’t just be a digital format of your brochure. It should be a tool for achieving one specific (or set of) goals for your business or organization.
Is your primary goal to;
– Generate new leads for your business?
– Generate more members for your organization?
– An avenue for establishing your company as a thought leader in your industry?
-is it a platform for engaging with clients and addressing complaints?
Whatever your primary goal or KPI is, it must be quantifiable for you to know whether your website is useful or not.
Don’t make assumptions. When you are about to start development or hire a professional web design company to handle your project (BTW, click here if you want to hire my web design agency), make sure you bring up and address this matter squarely.
- Have a game plan with regards to how you want to publicize the website.
When it comes to having a website, “build it and they will come” doesn’t apply. You have to go out there to market and publicize it aggressively.
And you do this even before you start designing the website.
There are 3 easy ways you can promote your website;
- Search engine optimization (i.e. optimizing your website to rank no. 1,2 or 3 when people search for related keywords in Google?). e.g. if you are a dentist, and someone searches Google for “best dentists in Lagos”, your website will float to the top as the no.1 option
- Through paid advertisement i.e. Pay per click (PPC) advertisement.
- Through word of mouth (including physical fliers, billboards, etc.)
Your plan about attracting visitors will inform how your website is going to be designed and what emphasis will be placed. E.g. If the primary plan for attracting visitors is SEO, then your website has to be content-rich with important keywords carefully placed as header tags in strategic positions on the website. Nothing is left to chance when doing this.
If on the other hand, you want to buy traffic through PPC advertisement, then, your site must have carefully designed landing pages with the aim of converting visitors to leads/customers.
The golden rule is, Homepage is to inform, whereas, a landing page is to sell.
The landing page is what you advertise via PPC and not just your website homepage.
Learn more about landing pages here
- Securing your website against hackers
Over 10+ million websites are hacked every year.
You wouldn’t want yours to be one of them, would you?
The first thing you do is to install an SSL certificate to your website hosting. These days, having SSL on your website is no longer an option. It’s compulsory.
Most browsers will flag your non-SSL website as insecure and inform your visitors about it.
You will agree no one wants to surf a website that is NOT secure.
Then install simple plugins like Loginizer to secure your website against brute-force hacking – That is if your website is built using WordPress).
For those using WordPress and other CMS, you also need to obfuscate (i.e. hide) your administrator login page so those hacking robots can’t have access to your backend. This will save you SQL injection headaches.
I’d stop here with the issue of website security because it is beyond the scope of this blog post. But I think I have pointed out the most basic ones you should know.
Finally, if you want to create an effective high converting website, simply take your time to get your acts right with regards to the 3 issues I have pointed out. Once you do these things above, you have 90% assurance/guarantee that your website is going to be a very useful income-generating asset instead of a money-consuming liability.
All the best as you implement what you have learned in this blog post.
About the Author: Dr. Smart Okpi is the Creative Director and CEO of eBrand and has over 10 years of experience in web design and digital marketing. He can be reached via email@example.com or call/WhatsApp 08105882416