Can anyone build a website? (They can but they probably shouldn’t)
We’ve been building websites for many years and this is a comment I hear far too often, “I’m just going to build a website myself” or “I have a friend that’s going to build it for me.” You hire professionals to do other things so why is a website the one thing people think they can do themselves?
Why hire a professional to build your website?
Because a good website doesn’t just happen. It’s incredibly complex and contains many components that need to work together to attract potential customers, increase the number of pages a person visits and the amount of time spent on site. I could list more but I think you get the picture.
My point is that many people do not stop and think about everything that goes into making a great website so I’m going to provide you with a list of some of the most vital elements.
You have 2 seconds to make a good first impression or people will click off. Does it project an image of professional, trust, quality and credibility? (it should) Your website is the first chance you have to make a great impression so you need to make it count.
Great content is key
It’s not just about having great content-it’s arranging the content in a logical way that’s easy for people to read/scan while providing interesting graphics and photos to help support the content. It’s about using bullet point lists and breaking up content into short paragraphs with thought provoking headlines.
It’s also about the readability of the content. You need to be careful that you don’t use too much technical jargon because the average person will have no idea what you’re talking about. It’s best to write so that the average person understands it and if you do use some technical jargon, make sure you explain what it is.
Incorporating call to actions
Why should people contact you? Are you offering them a free estimate or an incentive to call or email? It’s not just enough to put the information on the page-it’s about marketing. You need to point out the benefits of your products or services, not just the features.
Functionality is critical to performance
This is one of the most important areas of all and includes many things. If your website doesn’t work very well or is hard to navigate, people will leave. Plus, people are now looking at your website on so many devices with varying screen sizes (phones, tablets, laptops, desktops) that it adds another layer of complexity to the situation.
- Will your friend check your website for browser compatibility to make sure it functions correctly?
- Will your website be checked for technical errors that may prevent it from being indexed by a search engine?
- Will keyword research be done so you know what phrases are commonly used when searching?
- Will the most up-to-date, efficient search engine friendly code be used to build your site?
- Will the website code include the necessary “behind the scenes” components to help it perform better?
So many components to consider
This is not the end of the list-there’s more I could add though you should understand my point by now. Like a house, your website needs a strong foundation in order to perform well and using proper coding ensures the best performance.
In addition to the technical aspects of a website (how it’s built), the visual appearance of your website is just as important. There’s a reason why certain colors are used on websites and why content is arranged in a specific way. Everything on a website has to be placed correctly in order for it to perform at its best.
The problem is that an amateur doesn’t know what they don’t know. You can’t expect the average person to know all these things and that’s why they hire a professional. You may think you’re saving money but if potential customers can’t find your website or leave your website without calling, aren’t you losing a lot more money?
Like this article? Subscribe to the Sleepy Dog newsletter.
We send 1-2 newsletters per month with digital marketing tips. You can unsubscribe anytime via MailChimp.