No. 141

How To Make A Good First Impression With Your Website

Websites are the calling cards of the digital age. So often, a good website can make you. You might be an incredibly talented milliner, life coach, photographer or pastry chef, but if your website looks like something out of the mid-2000s, you could be left behind.

Excellent content wrapped in a beautiful design that works right is pure gold.

This is why I started my business: to give people a space online where their talents can really shine, to create a space that is sacred and helps them on their journey to who they are becoming.

So where do you start with your online space?

1. Invest in a logo.

Seriously, don’t underestimate the power of a logo. Think of Apple — iconic, recognizable anywhere instantly. Now, your brand may not have the same worldwide attention that Apple products do, but a beautiful, identifiable logo goes a long way. It can be synonymous with your brand. Invest in and fall in love with yours.

2. Use clear terms in your navigation menu.

According to one eye-tracking study, visitors spent an average of about 6 seconds looking at the navigation menu (second only to the site logo). Give your visitors clear choices. If you have a blog, call it a blog; people know what that is, they know what to expect. Don’t list your services under “Fashion” and make users work to find them.

3. Organize your content.

Be clear about who you are and what you do. It should be easy for visitors to find these things when they hit the homepage. Create an About page that allows them to connect and relate to you. If you offer services, find a way to visually organizing what you’re offering and who it’s for. Clarity is key.

4. Know what’s above the fold and make sure it’s awesome.

Users are more willing to scroll than click on multiple content pages, but what you show them above the fold of your site will make them want to scroll. That content above the fold is a crucial part of your first impression. Use it to convey your message or highlight key content you want to shine. Make them want more.

5. Make it work.

Everything on your site should work — sliders, opt-in forms, testimonial plugins. There’s really nothing worse than broken page elements.

6. Update the content regularly.

You don’t need to blog every day or even every week, but be consistent. Your readers should know when your posts go up. You’re creating an expectation — deliver on it.

Let me admit right now: this isn’t always easy. Entrepreneurs and business owners in the start up phase often may de-prioritize their content regularity because they get overwhelmed by their business. It’s okay. We’ve all been there — I go through regular phases of overwhelm myself. But I recommit regularly as well, and it’s that recommitment that will take your business from start up to success.

Well, that and a great website with that design/content killer combo.

(Psst…if you’re thinking about a new design for your site, get over here and sign up for my newsletter. I’ve got some good projects brewing that you’ll want to know about and if you’re on my list, you’ll be the first to know when they arrive.)

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One thought on “How To Make A Good First Impression With Your Website

  1. Looove this, Brandi! You’re awesome! I’ve signed up to your e-newsletter (I’m excited)! I’ve just re-designed my website, but there’s a lot missing from it that I know I still need to work on. I love your tips! You’ve reminded me that I need to get on it, haha

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Credits

Jane Reaction

(logo and original branding) is a graphic design and art director who works with with small businesses and creative entrepreneurs, creating cohesive and interesting brands and websites.

Carrie Coleman

(photography) is a wedding photographer, whose goal is to capture the visual expression of a couple's love through timeless, organic images. She is based in Charlottesville, Virginia.