There are almost as many web pages available to look at as there are stars in the sky. Whether spotting stars and their patterns or finding useful web sites; both can be equally challenging for the viewer.
Here are a few tips for your consideration when creating or updating your web page.
When someone visits your site, what do you think will be their first impression?
- Neatly organized
- Acceptable color choices (complimentary colors)
- Easy to find information
- Overall attractiveness. Ugly disorganized sites tell the viewer to go away.
B. Reading Level
You want people to understand and you must find a reading level appropriate for your audience.
- Avoid lengthy sentences (I’m still learning that one)
- Check spelling and grammar ( Microsoft Word – Open Office – Libre all offer dictionary and thesaurus support)
- Steer clear of jargon or technical words specific to you unless you expect the reader is going to have this background.
- Ask someone you know willing to offer an honest opinion about what you wrote. Be sure that someone isn’t in the same group as you. At this juncture you need independent and thoughtful review. We all require a sanity check.
How will your readers see this website? Accessibility is becoming the new web page gold standard.
- Is your web site designed for inclusion? How will people with disability use your site? Is it even a consideration?
- Display platforms are changing rapidly and with increasing use people with graphical touch pads and phones are accessing the net. Are you ready for these new technologies?
- Part of accessibility is the ease of access to key features and options. Is your site easy to view and find information for non-technical users?
D. Useful Information
Will someone visiting your site come away with something of value even if it’s only entertaining?
- Everyone makes a choice when they visit a website.
- Make your content worthy of those visiting to believe they have engaged something of value. That’s a difficult call to make for anyone but if that independent viewer thinks your site was interesting, informative or entertaining then you probably have a winner.
- Different people will have their own opinion. Generally, l find honest opinion will help improve the value.
Feedback from readers or potential clients is extremely valuable.
- When creating a business site the most valuable item is to have an open dialogue. Engage your customer!
- Blogs are useful as long as you are willing to take the time to update. If you offer the option for users to post, it’s best to only permit posting after approval.
- One of the successful ways to market to your customers is to provide something for free in exchange for contact information. Let’s face it, finding customers interested in our services is an ongoing challenge. No better way to gain contact information than when it’s volunteered through your web site. That’s gold and you are the miner.
- Stay in touch. Social media isn’t the complete answer, it’s a shared medium and not personal enough for business. Once you have a connection, let the other person know you are still interested in by routinely corresponding with them. Even if the correspondence is only one way and you never expect to obtain business, stay in touch. Let people know you care and just maybe they will too.
Here are a few recommend web sites to look at and obtain ideas. Remember, don’t copy words or images just review their appearance.
clarkhoward.com A site that provides thousands of helpful tips, links and user interaction. Very well organized.
proaudio.com A business site with an easy option to leave contact information.
electrosport.com A simple layout with images. There’s balance of both text and image in this layout.
appliedelectronics.com Well thought out organization with relevant image presentation. Hover over the menu options.
therichhaysgroup.com clients I demonstrate my own ideas with this layout. The presentation includes easy navigation with useful links.
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