Following on from our blog article “Web Design Advice Part 1: Planning Your Website”, we now look at the actual build of your website.
In part 1 of our website design advice series, we advised that undertaking thorough planning was critical to ensuring a good end result. Within the planning stage, we suggested that you think about your website structure, consider the information that you should include on your site and decide on the tone of voice with which to broadcast.
Having considered these elements, the next stage is to collate your actual website content and work closely with your developer to bring your new site to life.
Here are our top tips on collating your web content and ensuring a successful build…
1. Carefully Consider Your Copy
Your copy is one of the most important elements of your website. It’s your chance to inform prospective customers about who you are and what you do and influence them to buy from you rather than your competition.
Working with your site structure plan, work through each of your pages and carefully consider what information you want to include. At this brainstorming stage, you may find it easier to note down your ideas in bullet-point format which you can easily review and add to before pulling your notes together into comprehensive paragraphs.
It’s also important to think about keywords and phrases. What words might potential customers type into search engines such as Google to help find your products and services? Think about combinations of words as well as individual words and include geographical variations of key phrases if you feel they’re relevant to your business.
2. Make Sure Your Copy Is Informative But Not Too Long
After you’ve planned your content and considered key words, you can start to flesh out your actual copy. Begin to write comprehensive paragraphs but be conscious that they’re to the point and aren’t too long. Website copy should be interesting and informative and tell your audience what they want to know but in a clear and concise format that won’t make them lose interest part way through.
The use of sub-headings and bullet points can help your reader to easily identify relevant paragraphs of information and quickly digest key features and benefits.
To help your website be found by search engines and rank highly on search result listings, it’s important to ensure that you include your keywords and phrases throughout your copy. Include your words as often as you can in relevant places but not so much that it changes the context of your copy or interrupts the flow of your text.
3. Use Visually Appealing Imagery
As well as your text content, imagery is also another crucial element of your website. Use strong, eye-catching images to attract visitors to your pages and encourage them to read more.
If you run an ecommerce website, it’s essential to use high quality photographs of your products that visitors can zoom into to take a closer look of what they will potentially buy.
For products such as home furnishings and clothing, the use of lifestyle imagery (in addition to product pictures) will inspire your audience by showing them how the products will look in situ.
If your company provides a range of services, why not consider using icons to illustrate them. Choose a series of icons that follow a common style and will work well if grouped together either as a whole or as a sub-series. Individual service pages should still be illustrated with lifestyle or case study imagery but the service icons will work well on your summary and home pages.
4. Make Your Meta Tags Work Hard
Meta tags are key items of data that help form the structure of a website. They are used to define page and section titles and provide search engines with information on your site.
As part of your copywriting activity, it’s a good idea to draft your meta tag information as this will help your developer set up the structure of your site accurately.
- Title Tag: A title tag is effectively a page title and helps guide your visitors to the content they require. Each page can have a different title tag so ensure it is clearly describes the page content but is short and to the point.
- H1 Tag: This is one of most important on-page descriptive tags that tells search engines what your page is all about – it tends to be first bit of on-page title text a search engine will read. It’s best to keep the text short and focused on one or two of your top keywords or phrases.
- Description Tag: The description tag is a short paragraph of information that describes a website page. The information is presented in search engine result listings and is your one opportunity to attract potential visitors to click through and read more. When writing your description tags, keep them short but informative.
5. Work Closely with Your Website Development Agency
Last but not least in ensuring a great end result for your website is to have a good relationship with your web development agency. Ensure they have a thorough understanding of your business and that you have given them a detailed brief of what you want to achieve.
Touch base with your developer at regular intervals to check progress and find out if there is any information they need. Provide them with as much content as you can in one go so development isn’t delayed while they wait for you to collate more copy.
All in all, ensuring good communication and understanding between your two companies is the key to a successful outcome. Be open, honest and forthcoming with information and your new website will be just the job.
If you are considering a new website for your business, contact myCloud Media to find out how we can help. Call us on 0800 849 0888 or visit our website.
Article by : Tim Bennett