|Essentials in Design
| Company web sites are
becoming more and more popular, and not just with the large companies. A lot of
smaller companies are looking at the web as a way to expand their businesses
into uncharted territory. With smaller budgets some of these companies go it
alone, and wonder why they seem to get no response.
The selection below is a few hints and tips based on what can
go wrong with a company web site. Read on an learn from the mistakes of
Make it easy to find
information on your site
A simple to
navigate site is an essential in a business site. If your prospects can't find
the information they are looking for in about three clicks, then more often
than not they will leave.
consistent style and graphic set throughout the site
online style is portraying you to your prospects. If you appear disorganised in
cyberspace, what impression does that give?
Make sure there are links to the main page from all pages on
Because of the way search engines
work, your prospects may not enter your site through your main page. You want
your prospects to be able to start at the beginning.
Do not use links that jump to the middle of a page
This often confuses visitors as to where they are on
your site. It is also quite annoying when you have found the information you
are looking for, press print and find you are printing 14 pages of information,
most of which is of no relevance.
not use 'under construction' signs
may look cute - the first time, but they soon get annoying. There is no need to
use them, if the page is not finished, don't put a link to it. Only add a page
when it is complete and presentable, its more professional.
Do not use blinking or scrolling text
This is quite distracting, and you could suffer from
it detracting from the message of your site. This is assure sign of an amateur
Check your spelling
Spelling mistakes give a very poor image of your
company, and again send the amateur message to your prospects.
Do not overload your pages with too many
Too many graphics lead to a slow
site. If the site becomes too slow, your prospects will not stick around to
find out what your message is.
careful when choosing backgrounds
choices are important. Background images or colours that make the text hard to
read will make your prospects go elsewhere.
Make your primary message stand out
Business web surfers have very little patience, and so will no
root around a site for your message. Make it clear from the start what you are
all about and you will get a better response.
to a site. It should be used with caution, as it can add quite a burden to
sites and not add any real value. Don't depend on it for navigation, as most
company firewalls will remove the script from your pages. Without the script
your prospects get nothing more than your front page, and will not stick around
to find out why.
Provide an e-mail
link for comments or more information
potential customers are not interested in picking up a phone or putting a stamp
on and envelope, but they will take a few minutes to send you an e-mail - if
you make it easy for them.
final web page on a web server before making it live
looks good in the test environment on your disk may not work when you load it
onto your web server. HTML generation programs are major culprits in this. It
makes good sense to check, and then check again. It is better that you find a
problem, rather than your prospects.