4 WEBSITE MUST HAVES by
Stephan Lange

March 7, 2014
Digital

Want a best in class website but don’t know where to start? Our digital team have listed the four things your website needs… right now!

1. Responsive Website Design

In this day and age if your website doesn’t work on all devices, it is a technological dinosaur! Simply put, Responsive Web Design (RWD) allows a website to dynamically change its appearance depending on the size of the screen.

When you start the process of building a new website ask yourself this – how much traffic and therefore new business am I willing to forgo if my website is not viewable on all of the following: desktop computers, notebooks, tablets and smartphones? If the answer is ‘none’, then you should definitely consider RWD.

When we at Metropolis redeveloped our website using RWD techniques, we immediately saw 25% new traffic coming from smartphones alone!

 

2. Well-considered User Experience (UX)

UX is getting more important as web technologies become more advanced. Consider the user journey as they follow through on the different actions on the website. Consistency and complicity in design is key with buttons that stand out.Consider any website as never just a website but a mini application rather than a simple static web page.

User experience and usability have become synonymous, but these two fields are clearly distinct. UX addresses how a user feels when using a system, while usability is about the user-friendliness and efficiency of the interface.

Usability is a big part of the user experience and plays a major role in experiences that are effective and pleasant but human factors, science, psychology, information architecture and user-centered design principles also play major roles.

 

3. Optimum Website Performance

Another critical component that often gets overlooked is website performance. When we first see our brand new shiny website that’s been built just for us we’re enamored by it’s great looks and usability, but studies show it’s all for nothing if your website isn’t fast enough. In fact there is evidence to suggest that Google Search will punish your search ranking results if your website doesn’t begin loading within 0.5 seconds!

There are a number of things a web developer can do to make your website faster including page caching, script minification, image compression and server tuning. So next time remember to ask about your websites performance and discuss what can be done to improve it.

 

4.  Analytics and optimisation

It is essential to use an Analytics tool to gain insights about the people visiting your website; how visitors discovered your site, how they engaged with your site and why they left. This is something that is free and easy thanks to Google Analytics. But now that you have this overwhelming amount of data what are your next steps?

This is where an analytics expert can help. Key considerations include the frequency of reports to be generated and reporting requirements by stakeholder interest. Reports should be relevant, interesting, insightful, and most importantly help determine an ongoing digital strategy to boost engagement.

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