When you’re designing a website you need to think about more than just making it look beautiful because you don’t make money with looks. It’s a hard thing to get your head around because you have already learned all about how to design stuff that blows people away when they look at it. You can still try and impress people and your design should still be beautiful, but it also needs to have something special about it. Do you have any idea what it is that you must do?
It needs to convert, but it needs to be at the highest percentage possible. In the past you might have said conversion was the copywriter’s problem and you would maybe have been right. Now everyone wants to squeeze as much money from their website as possible because they’re trying to build a business. If you’re website design is not optimized to convert traffic to sales, opt-ins, or shares the website owner is going to be missing out on a huge amount of money, so here are some tricks to get the job done.
Start with a feature box
The feature box converts so highly because it’s the first thing people see when they land on a website. Being above the fold and directly beneath the logo certainly has its benefits. When you’re designing it you can’t just have anything there because people see so much of them that they can blend into the background if they don’t stand out. A graphic with your freebie opt-in offer would be perfect here and make sure you only ask for the email to entice more people into signing up.
Now the sidebar
Even though you give people the option of signing up in the feature box you must do the same at the top of the sidebar. What side you decide to go for will ultimately depend on the way you lay out the rest of the site, but the right-hand side always works a little better because that is where peoples’ eyes end up when they’re scanning across. It’s not as easy to make this one stand out so if you don’t do anything else, just make sure you have a really enticing headline.
The typography makes a huge difference because people who can’t read anything without leaning to one side with their eyes squinted won’t stick around. Even if the person writing the articles isn’t a great writer they will still get people who love it. This doesn’t happen with text people can’t read and if they don’t get down to the bottom of the article or sales copy they won’t get to buy any products. If you have eyes like an eagle don’t forget to make it big enough for people who can’t see as well as you.
Looking for products
You won’t see much websites that shove their product in peoples’ faces every page they go to. That means you need to have a way for them to find the product otherwise when they decide they want it they could leave empty-handed. The only real way you can do that is through the navigation and when designing a website everything must be linked together in such a way that any page bringing in money should be easily found. By easily found, I mean being able to get there within two clicks because that is sometimes all you get.
If you don’t design a website with an action color you’re doing it a disservice. That is because you need to train people to click on certain things and when they see colors getting used for more than one thing they might not know it’s a clickable link that has something on the other side. You can’t just assume people will click on anything because not everyone is Internet savvy, so from now on always have one special color that tells people to click something.
- License: Creative Commons image source
Nancy Martin is a well known Vancouver website designer and an avid blogger. She is quite active on several web designing forums where she gives advice to upcoming web designers.