Five key elements to designing an effective website

Establishing a website for your business is an online investment that should provide tangible a return for you. For that to happen, you have to incorporate the elements of a successful website, and it all starts with the right design.

The aim of your website design should be to drive traffic to your site, and engage users once they get there. Doing that really is as simple as 1...2...3, because it means your website should be FUN ('Functional', 'Usable' and 'Nice' to look at). If that doesn't describe your website, then you need to pay keen attention to the following five key elements of an effective website:

1) Attractive Appearance

The visual elements of the site should be a professional representation of your business. That means getting components such as the text, images, layout, and colour, just right.

2) Relevant content

Always strive to have informative, quality content that will appeal to your users. Content should be clear, concise, and above all, relevant. It should also be interesting and easily understood. Remember that a visitor to your website is looking for value; make sure that your website offers that.

3) High Usability

This is critical, because users visiting your site don't have a lot of time to locate what they are looking for. Therefore the pages should load quickly (20 seconds or less is ideal), it should be easy to navigate, and the design should be simple and consistent.

4) Very Functional

Make sure that the website fulfils its purpose, and works for the user. Users should be able to make selections easily, and need only a few clicks to get to the point.

5) Search Engine Optimised

This allows you to be seen on the web, because it determines your ranking on search pages. Be sure to use relevant keywords and backlinks in your copy, and keep content fresh to improve rankings.

If you follow these 5 simple design tips, you will be well on your way to creating an effective website.

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