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First impressions count

Your website is likely to be the first impression a potential client gets of your company, so it better be good.  And in 2016 many visitors will use a mobile phone or small tablet to find you.

5 Seconds and you're out

When a visitor from a search engine hits your website they will take around 5-6 seconds to decide whether it's worth looking at or just hit the 'back' button and try the next site. 

Nobody reads the home page

They just scan it looking for clues that they've found a real website and it's relevant to their needs now.  All they'll see in 5 seconds are pictures and headlines.

Websites that mean business, designed in Sheffield  Call for a quote

Successful web design

Successful web designA successful website must do lots of things well...

  • It must be found in the search engines.  Otherwise nothing else matters.
  • It must load quickly.  Visitors (and search engines) get bored easily.
  • It must be visually attractive and look professional.
  • It must get your message across quickly and succinctly.
  • It must provide easy, obvious access to other parts of the site.
  • It must persuade visitors to take action - usually to call you or buy something.

Websites, like many things in life, are a compromise and we match text content and validated code with web optimised images and graphics to give you a website that loads quickly and appeals to search engines but still looks great to human visitors.

Mobile phones and tablets

websites for mobile phones and tabletsA website that looks great and works well on a computer monitor may not be so good on the small screen of a mobile phone, and a navigation menu that opens up as you move the mouse over it just won't work on a touch screen.

The answer is a technique known as 'responsive design'.

A responsive website adjusts its page layout depending on the device you use to view it.  Side by side items switch to a one below the other layout so that text stays readable.  It's easy, even natural, to scroll down long pages with a flick of your finger.  Check out the slide show above to see examples of websites in both large screen and mobile layouts, or look at this website on both a computer and a phone to see what we mean.

The search engines are mobile aware too and Google actively promotes mobile optimised websites above others if you search using a mobile phone.

Navigation and organisation

Website navigation and organisationIt's important that visitors quickly feel at home on your website and can find what they're looking for so your site needs a clear, obvious navigation system and the pages must be organised in a logical manner.  If visitors have to spend time learning how your website works they'll quickly get frustrated and go elsewhere.

Consistency is the key: both within your site and with other sites.  Most of us think we know how to find our way around a website because we've used navigation menus countless times.  Break with such conventions at your peril. Some years ago a client complained to us that he couldn't find our phone number and address on our website.  The reason?  We'd called the contact page 'Get in touch' instead of 'Contact Us'.  (Yup - most of us leave our brains behind when looking at websites and web designers have to remember that!)

Regular updates

regular updates, fresh contentGiven the choice between a website that was updated last week and another that was last updated 3 years ago, which would you trust?  Search engines are like human visitors in this respect and, all other things being equal, a recently updated website will achieve better search engine results than an old, stagnant site.

A content management system, CMS, lets you make updates to your website without getting into the technicalities.  Naturally you'll still have to think carefully about what you say on your website, and bear in mind how the search engines see it, but it does mean you can make regular updates without having to come back to us every time.

Nearly all the websites we build come with the Panpage content management system and we include training in how to use it with every site.

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page last updated: 24/10/2016

Abbeydale Web Ltd
Sheffield
South Yorkshire
S20 4SS

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