As an organization that specializes in improving small businesses digital marketing efforts, we really dropped the ball on our website sdagency.net. We launched the Stewart Design Agency website on September 15th 2018. We were super excited to have our first corporate website. Over the coming months we slowly begin to see just how inadequate our site was designed for lead generation and catering to our target market (truth is we did not even have a target market).
After analyzing our many issues, identifying clear business goals, getting a true understanding of our target customer base and a whole bunch of late night google sessions, we came up with a much-improved design for our company going forward. The new site will be launching in the coming months. From our mistakes we identified five ways to know your small business website needs a redesign.
- Designed your Site to Look Pretty not to your Target Market: You’re a small business owner and you just saw one of your competitors launch a new website. You go back to your web designer and say “Why can’t our site look like that? Can’t you just make it pretty like that site?” Small business owner must understand what works for one business might not work for another. You need to resists the temptation to go with just a pretty design. Thorough research and testing, your site or application must be targeted towards your ideal customer base.
- Website not Optimized for Mobile Devices: According to eMarketer.com in 2019, for the first time the US consumers will spend more time on there mobile phone then watching TV. And that was BEFORE the COVID-19 pandemic. Your organization is underserving a very large population of users if your site is not optimized for various screen sizes. Small business owners must cater their websites to embrace mobile first principles. If your current site or application does not cater to mobile users it’s time for a redesign.
- Website not Functioning as Intended: Its surprising just how many large-scale websites I see that clearly don’t work as intended. Your website must work correctly for users to have a quality experience on your website. If your website is not functioning as intended this is a clear sign its time for a redesign.
- Content Does not Connect with your Target Market: The ability to write well-crafted content that connects with your users is a skill all in itself. Many companies (including ours) struggled with learning how to craft this content. However, thanks to Google (I really think we would be out of business if it was not for Google) and some input from a professional content writer. We were able to craft what I think is some compelling content. We used leading questions that empathize with the day to day issues a small business owners encounter. Using headings that lead your users to interact with the site and or direct attention to a particular section of your site is important to keep the user engaged. If your site content looks and feel dated its time to rewrite your content as you redesign your site.
- Not using Analytics to Gather Metrics: You’ve launched your brand-new site. It looks great, content is on point and everything seems good. Or does it? How do you know if all of your hard work is paying off? This is where analytics comes it. Google Analytics is a free tool that allows you to track various metrics of your website. Everything from real time number of users on the site to creating goals for certain metrics. Sometime Google Analytics can be overwilling with how much information it provides. However, there are hundreds of short YouTube videos that can get you started on learning the basis.