The other night we had plans to go out. We looked on line and found a new restaurant downtown. The website made it look upscale, and trendy. We dressed accordingly. When we got there we were shocked to find it was pretty much a corner bar. Why in the world did they choose a website that did not represent them? It totally misleads customers. The days of having a website just to have a website are over.
It’s time you know your target audience, know your business strengths and make sure you tout them to your audience online. Your website is such a powerful tool in your marketing arsenal, sometimes it’s your only tool. You have to make sure you get it right.
To represent your business correctly online you should make sure your website builder knows your business inside and out. Yes, your website builder. If you want to keep up with the other guys in your field, hire a professional to do the job. Not some kid who took an HTML class your your retired brother-in-law who dabbles in WordPress. Hire a professional. We know what we’re doing. We’ll get the job done quickly and you’ll look like you care about your business.
When you talk to a website professional make sure they ask you the right questions. Who are your customers, who do you want to be your customers, make sure they ask about demographics including income levels, activities, and regions. The more they pry into your business the more they will know who you are and who you want to impress and the better they will make your site reflect your brand.
When the design is presented to you, don’t assume it’s the only one you get. If you don’t like it, or if you don’t think it represents you and your business, don’t accept it. Simple as that. Make recommendations on changes and see what they come up with. It’s your website, they’re building it.
One more thing, make sure your logo is shown as your logo without modifications or adaptations, make sure the feel of the site is to your liking but more importantly to your brand. You’ve worked hard to build your business. Make sure your website truly reflects your work.
Sue Rachunok is the owner of Design Interventions, a website design firm in Wilmington NC.