It’s never been more tempting to build your own website: Web development firms such as Wix and WordPress all offer solid products, and can produce decent, coherent online spaces in the right hands. After all, if you’re an aspiring entrepreneur at the head of a small business, you’ve got to try and do it yourself, haven’t you?
However, without a competent, well-designed, and user-friendly site, your best efforts at saving a few pounds may do more harm than good. The negative effects of a sub-par website may not be immediately clear, but over time, a bad website will put you at a significant disadvantage in an increasingly competitive world of ecommerce. And with so many options available when it comes to building your own site, a poorly-designed site is inexcusable. So, don’t be too quick to neglect your other options, such as hiring a web developer, or utilising white-label software development.
Let’s have a look at what defines a bad website. There are three key factors which contribute to the success of a website, which we will now look at in detail:
Functionality, Design and Content. Stick to these three points, and keep your site up to the increasingly high design standards set by DIY site builders and web developers.
Functionality is arguably the most crucial factor, as it lays the foundations for an optimal user experience. Ultimately, if your site functions poorly, traffic can plummet, as users leave your site in frustration. Equally, if a site isn’t fit for purpose, users may look elsewhere, as poorly designed sites fill potential customers with concern; you wouldn’t place news articles on Pinterest, would you?
If you would’ve placed articles and blogs on a page like this, maybe consider web-developer hire; even if your site is free from broken links, poorly-formatted pages and ill-fitting images, the fundamentals of website design must not be ignored.
Overlapping slightly with how your site functions, the design of a website is almost equally critical. If a site is cluttered with an excess of irrelevant information, users will again be deterred instantly. Don’t disregard smaller aspects of design principles, such as the use of white space in your site. Keep your site tidy, clean and simple, for a tried-and-tested design success, like this: Figure 1.
Note how the site hosts just enough to maintain your interest; any additional information would be lost, and would be ignored on the viewer.
So, you’ve got your site. It functions wonderfully, it’s beautifully designed, but there’s still something missing. Of course, you could have the best site possible, but without appropriate, relevant and engaging content, your audience will have little reason to continue visiting. Combatting this is straightforward: Update your blog. Lace keywords throughout your pages. Offer a variety of content, such as videos and images (look for video creation in your area, if you’re struggling). Ensure that your SEO is optimised. Keep the relevant, original content coming at a consistent rate, and you’ll gradually establish your position on search engine rankings.
Let’s say you’ve somehow ignored all these vital factors – What can you expect to happen to your site? As I stated earlier, the effects aren’t immediately noticeable. A poor site will affect your business without you knowing. Here a few things that could be happening to your site without you knowing.
- Customer Satisfaction
A sub-standard site is the largest detriment to repeated custom: your customers come to your site with a distinct purpose in mind, to browse and purchase your products or services. Anything that hinders them from achieving this will be a reason for them to look elsewhere. Even if a customer navigates a messy, incomprehensible site, they’re going to be much more hesitant to return, and they’re hardly going to leave your site satisfied.
- Time and Money
In all businesses, time is money. While the costs of a white-label website may be something which causes small business owners to shy away from such offerings, a site built by someone with little development experience will deter customers, leaving them unsatisfied and unlikely to return. As such, a web development service will save you the time, money and effort that you would’ve lost in attempting such a feat yourself. By saving yourself time, you’re saving yourself money too, something which will be impossible with a terribly designed site.
- Focus on Business
So, you’ve now got a professionally built site, meaning that rather than worrying about formatting and SEO, you can focus on your core competencies. By building a site yourself, your resources are stretched almost impossibly thin, as you divert your efforts into frustrating tasks which distract you from your aptitude within your business sector.
So that’s a brief overview of the consequences of bad websites, and how to ensure your online space remains accessible, engaging and relevant. Many white-label firms also offer SEO management, digital marketing services and online video creation, letting you focus on your long-term business plans.