Small Business Web Design and Marketing

Saturday, November 17, 2012

To the non-technical local shopkeeper, getting onto the internet with a small business web design in the first place can seem incredibly difficult but getting found online is even harder.

Because it's not just about having a website, it's making sure that your pages show up on Google and the other search engines for the search terms that best reflect your product or service.

So, you need to find out what your potential customers are typing into the Google search bar and then you need to make sure that there are pages on your site which position those words in the places that the search engine spiders can see them.

Header tags, metadata, alt tags are the main places that the bots sent out by Google and the other search engines will be looking for the clues that tell them what your website is all about so these must be completed with care as it is very tempting to keyword stuff.

But that's just making the page search engine friendly. It's not much good having a page full of words that only the spiders like, you have to think about the visual experience of your reader too. Because they're not just a reader, they're a potential client.

Use the right words in the correct order and they will be picking up the phone to find out more or even buy straightaway.

So you have to look at your website and give it an audit. Ask yourself four questions:

What is the first thing that will jump out at any new reader?

Is the content interesting enough to not only keep them on your site but also to encourage them to click on the other pages to find out more?

Is it patently obvious what service/product you are offering and the benefits that it can provide?

Is there a clear Call to Action (CTA)? An instruction to buy now or learn more with an easy to read phone number so they know exactly what to do?

The most beautiful website in the world is absolutely worthless if no one knows it's there or, if they do get there, they cannot work out what it's about or what they're meant to do.

Concept, Content, Call To Action, Conversion

Of course, it doesn't end there for the small business, web design and on-page SEO are just the things you can see - they deal with the content. The search engines decide the relevance of your website to the search term by analysing Activity and Back links, so the next thing you have to do is small business marketing using social media, back linking, bookmarking and paid advertising tools like AdWords and Facebook or Linked In Ads.

These will drive targeted traffic back to your site where your clear content and concise calls to action will result in sales.

Small Business Web Design - Vital Components

Small business web design should be interpreted as a website for small businesses but not as a small website. If the website does not generate any revenue and does not serve the purpose for its existence then it can be termed as small, but not otherwise. It is obvious that even a small business would like the website to perform and generate business.

A website can only be seen and read and because of this the text content and visual contents play a vital role in the success of the website. The website can be divided into different parts such as the home page, about us page, products/services page, contact page and a page about Privacy Policies & Disclaimers.

Let us see the relevance of these pages one by one.

Home page:

This is the face of the website. Everyone must be aware of the relevance of the face in the personality of a human being. This principle is apt for web design too. For a small business investing in a website is a big investment. For assuring the return on this investment the home page should be appealing, user friendly and marketing oriented. The home page should have links that take the visitor to the webpage of his/her interest. The images and videos should convey the business the website does. The home page should be designed in such a way that the visitor feels that the web site has been designed after considering his/her needs.

About us page:

This is the page that reveals the information about the company and its management. The background of the founders of the company is presented in this page. The objective and mission of the business is usually presented in this page. This page is very important of instating the trust in the organization. The visitors usually like to know the persons behind the business and want to be assured that the company exists in the real world and not just virtual.

Products/Services Page:

This is the page that is crucial for generating business. A website without this page could be considered a body without any arms. This page should clearly state the products and/or services being offered by the website. This page should clearly mention the features and price of the products or services offered. At times the embedding of images is mandatory because studies have proved that visual content is more effective than text content especially for converting the visitor into buyer.

Contact Page:

Would you trust as person or business that does not have a physical address? The answer should be negative and this is what that has big impact on the mind of the prospective buyer. Not mentioning the physical address, phone and email address gives a chance to the prospective buyer to doubt your identity. Do not let this happen especially when the success of your website is dependent on the trust of your buyers.

Privacy Policies & Disclaimers Page:

Every website is subject to the rules and regulations of some or the other country. To be legally safe one needs to have page about Privacy Policies & Disclaimers.

Copyright © 2011

Small Business Web Design

To make a small business a complete success in the online platform may be a challenge, but nevertheless prove to be a major success in the end. However, for that figuring out the right combination of design, technology and services is essential to put up a company's website, which is the representative of a business in the online market. Only a professional looking website with an aesthetic design, informational and engaging content, easily downloadable pages and user-friendliness of the site can create trust about the business in the minds of the visitors and eventually, build the company's reputation.

Here is a list of certain online tools related to small business web design, which is a must have. These tools make the upgrading tasks for a website way easier. From adding new pages to changing the design and updating the code of the site, these tools perform a whole range of useful tasks.

Firebug with Firefox

The combination of Firebug and Firefox is very useful. It helps in improving a website's code with greater ease, be it HTML or JavaScript. It can also quickly improve CSS and image handling. Fire Bug converts Firefox into a real-time editor and code analyzer web page and allows the site admin to change the code and also, view them in the browser instantly. This saves time that otherwise goes in refreshing the browser for every new edit in the code. If some additional plug-ins can be installed then speed bottlenecks and other such loopholes in the site can also be well analyzed and fixed.

CSS3 Generator

For those, who do not like typing codes, this is a very useful tool. This online tool lets the coder create real time CSS3 effects. All the coder needs to do is copy the CSS code that is generated in the website own pages and then paste it. Even someone who is new to CSS can create effects like Border radius, text shadow, multiple columns, box shadow and transitions with ease. Moreover, replacing slow-to-load images with CSSS3 makes the website faster and this also improves the SEO. ColorZilla Gradient Generator another tool similar to CSS3 which mainly works on colorful, flexible and artistic gradient backgrounds.

Design-a-web page

This is an online platform for designing web pages. It takes the site's content to convert it into professional, SEO optimized landing web pages. All these are automatically handled and this also includes the underlying PHP, performance, HTML, CSS and web hosting. The tool can be used for free trial for 7 days.

Small Business Web Design - What You Should Know

If you've used the Internet for any length of time you should already know the value of having a website as a small business. Have you ever heard about a business or drove by a business on your way to work and you wanted to know more about it?

So you go online and search for the business and probably find one of two things. You either get a result showing a map of the location from Google and maybe a few reviews of the business, or you find a website, or maybe both. Now, both of these results are valuable as a customer. A review or several reviews can often be more telling than a website in terms of quality, but the website is going to give you solid facts, like pricing, a menu, or business hours.

Based on what you find you can instantly get a feeling for the quality of the business, and it only takes a few minutes to tell if you're actually going to go check out the physical store. Those first few seconds are very important because the Internet is nothing like reading a book. Customers will make judgments quickly simply based on the look of the site and how quickly they can find the information they are looking for. A professional looking site gives you confidence in the quality of the product or service the business offers, while a web site that looks like it was made 15 years ago makes you wonder how up to date the business is or how seriously they take their business.

Similarly, when you click that Google map link and get reviews, if there are a large number of reviews that are mostly positive then that gives you confidence that the business is visited often. If the review page is a barren wasteland then you have no idea what people think of the business, do you take the chance and go check it out? What if you were searching for a local dentist? Isn't it important to know how people are treated there and how their overall experience is?

Now, How do you get those reviews? Well that is another aspect of web design called Search Engine Optimization. SEO can do incredible things for a small business. Most people think, "The Internet is so huge, I can't compete with these national or global brands. It's not worth the time or money". I don't think that can be further from the truth. You see, when people are searching for a generic service they might put something like "Dentist, Detroit, MI". I'm sure you've done a search like that yourself, and it makes sense, because if you just type in "dentist" then you see results like 1-800 dentist or the Wikipedia page for the word dentist, not actual dentist offices in your area.

While you might not be seen at the top of the search for dentist, you will see far less competition from national brands when you search for dentist, Detroit, MI. Now that is something we can target with SEO and have a good chance at getting your website to the top of the search. Why is it so important to be at the top? Because most people click the first link in a search, just think about your searching habits. Now lets do some math on this; Currently there are 880 searches per month for "dentist Detroit mi", if you are at the top of that search and even bring in a modest 10 or 15 new customers per month (less than 2%), what is that worth to you?

SEO will get visitors to the page, but then the job is to convert those visitors into sales. A professional looking website will help in this area significantly. The goal here is to entice visitors to be interested in your product and get them to the information they are looking for quickly. This isn't just the graphic look of the site, but also content and link placement. You can see there is a lot of work that goes into a small business web design.

So the truth is that you already know how important small business web design is, because you use these features of the Internet constantly, maybe without even giving them a second thought. Good design is important in your customer's eyes and I am happy to provide it.

Great Boosts With Small Business Web Design

When you look at the internet you will find that small and big businesses have one major thing in common. That is their presence. The potential of the internet has necessitated a presence by every company, be it big or small, old or even new. Even start ups today look to incorporate web design costs into their expenses.

While the websites may be the common factor between larger and smaller companies, there is a lot that distinguishes them. They vary in their style and scope, and also in the level of complexity. Since there is so much that a website allows, it is a must for any company to have a website.

With every small business web design must be modified. Website design can be tailored to suit the needs and budgets of every company. For a startup, it is easy to find a solution which can give them all the basic features without being overly complicated.

The biggest options that a small business web design allows include a face to the company, and also a mechanism for feedback. These are the most important allowances that need to be made. A customer must be able to see what the company stands for, and also be able to get back in touch for any queries and suggestions, or even to place its first order.

While a small business web design can help with what you need, it must also be inviting. For people to be draw to your website, it must be optimised in both style and content. It should be easy to navigate and take you through simply. When you have this accomplished, it will make people not just visit you more frequently, but also navigate through your site more thoroughly.

It is obvious that a small business would look for smaller, simpler solutions to accomplish their web design. It is possible to look for simpler web design and basic features at affordable rates. There may not be very many things to draw you to it in terms of complexity, but it can continue to serve its purpose. It is own defence, there are several complicated websites which can either weigh you down with their complexity, or just not offer enough for you to manage with. With a simpler small business web design you may actually be able to get all your needs met at a lower cost than you imagined.

Every business these days should have a web site to promote their products and services from, regardless of the niche they operate in. A well designed site can quickly pay for itself in new orders. Yet there are still lots of firms around that don't have one. This is a huge mistake.

More and more people turn to the internet every day to find local business services. A few years ago we all turned to the Yellow Pages when we needed to find a local tradesman, but these days, this traditional medium is being rapidly replaced by the internet.

Getting a web site for your business does not have to be a huge expense. For as little as a few hundred pounds you can get a simple site that will be more than adequate for your needs.

You do not need a lot of functionality, a simple static site in most cases will suffice for a small business. You don't need lots of moving graphics, and in most cases you don't even need to be able to take payments.

For most small businesses, the primary purpose of a web site is to generate leads rather than sales. Once you have the lead's contact details, you can sell them your service later.

Your new web site should firstly give your business an online presence so that people can find you. Simply publishing a web site is not enough, it needs to be optimized for the keywords your prospects type in to the search engines. When selecting a web design service, you need to ensure they fully understand the importance of search engine optimization (SEO). If they don't, look elsewhere. There is no point having a web site that no one can find.

Once found, your site has to give your visitor a strong reason to contact you or to give you their contact details so that you can contact them. You have to make them an offer they cannot refuse. Promote a special offer that is only available for a limited time, or offer a free eBook that will provide them valuable information in return for their email address. Once you have a lead's details, you have the opportunity to present your offer to them again, and tests show that the more someone is exposed to an offer, the more likely they are to take it up.

Finally, your small business web design should include client testimonials for credibility and a strong guarantee to remove the risk from your prospects minds. These elements will increase the contact rates you make with your prospects, and ultimately the number of sales your site generates.

Small Business Web Designers - How to Find a Web Design Company

Internet brings great opportunities for small businesses to reach out to a broader extent of customer base and develop their marketing strategies effectively. A good website is a crucial ingredient in widening your target market in the hub of e-commerce and expands beyond your imagination. Having a well built website for your small business is the main starter to let the world know about your business purpose and get interconnected with various interesting people.

If you are seeking for small business web designers to create a good website for your business, then by going through some tips which are mentioned and shared below will help you gain a profound knowledge in getting the most appropriate expert website designer.

  1. First, get things clear with what you want; what are your needs and requirements for your business. Then, estimate how much you can invest to have a simple professional looking website. As a kind of protection, it is a good step to ask if you could see the finished product before you make any payment.
  2. Investigate their service portfolio before you venture for any professional web designer or website building company and check their overall range of service packages offered. Check if it fits your needs and requirements for your market strategy or not. By doing this you will get a complete clarity that whether their services suits your needs for your market strategy or not.
  3. Approaching personally or speak directly to the assigned web designer or decision maker at the web designing company will help you to get the entire items, plans or details they have for your business. You can also explain and make them understand of what are your likes and requirements for your business
  4. Checking on how much a web design company can commit and dedicate to your project tasks will give you a confidence in hiring the right web designer for your website. It is good to investigate on how they have worked with their previous clients, reputation and whether they delivered the project tasks on time or not.
  5. Make an agreement on time line for undertaking the project within a particular set period. It is wise to ask the professional designer or website building company on which day you can expect to review their finished product for your business. This will ensures your business work to proceed with a good flow.
  6. It is very much advisable to measure the cost-effectiveness of the solutions which a website design company or designer is providing. Selecting a company which can provide the best service package at competitive cost will turn out to be a worth of investment in your web designing project.

By having this information in your mind from the aforementioned tips, you will be able to select the right web-site designing company which can exactly meet your expectations. This will let you learn about their knowledge and skills in developing a website design. Furthermore, you will get confidence in making the right choice and enable you to build a trust.

Small Business Web Design Best Practices - Ensuring Multi-Browser Compatibility

Small business web design is becoming increasingly getting more complex. The key reasons for this complexity is not just demanding consumers- it is also a serious technical issue as browsers have multiplied. This, unfortunately, has been driving the costs of web design higher for small business owners.

In the early 2000s, Internet Explorer ruled the browser market. As a result, small business web design- typically a low cost, simple web design, was focused on compatibility with one browser, Internet Explorer. Since then, two things have happened to drive up the cost of internet development.

1. Multiplicity of browsers: Web design at the turn of the century had to contend with one browser. That kept the testing time of the overall design process low and websites simple. Small Biz Express- a small business web design firm -says now they have to design and test for:

A) Various versions of Internet Explorer - with IE6 often being problematic B) Various versions of Mozilla Firefox C) Apple's Safari D) Opera E) Google Chrome

This pushes up both design time as well as testing time increasing the cost for owners.

2. Growth of mobile devices Increasingly consumers are using their smart phones to browse the web. The option for business owners is to create another version of the website or at least ensure that the current site is at least readable on mobile devices. The recent Apple decision not to support Flash on both iPad and iPhone is a very big deal- it now means that small business owners may have to think twice before using Flash technology for animation or videos on their website if they want their websites to be visible on mobile devices.

All in all, consumers have more choices, technology standards are multiplying and this is pushing up the cost of design and development. For owners who are budget constrained, this creates a bind. More and more of their customers are online making it impossible for them not to have an online presence. But small business website design costs (and complexity) have been increasing making it much more difficult for business owners especially in these recessionary times.

Affordable Small Business Web Design - Finding the Right Designer

Many design firms claim to offer affordable small business web design. Unfortunately, as with any other product or service, cheap does not always equate to good. While budgetary limitations are a reality for any small business, skimping on website design can lead to an ineffective, unsatisfying experience for both the business and site visitors. The point of having a website is to attract visitors and increase market reach. As a marketing tool, your website should show a return relative to the investment. Small investments lead to small returns. In the case of web design, a skimpy investment can result in driving away visitors, rather than attracting them.

Some factors to consider when shopping for affordable small business web design include experience, market position, and niche. A good design company will have experience with clients similar to your business. Their market position should be on par with your own. This means they do not market as the cheapest, nor do they cater to a high-end clientele, unless this is also your market position. In terms of niche, look for a designer who speaks to a similar market, with the same values shared by your business and, more importantly, your customers. This could be in the form of an overall business approach, a specific market segment, or ideal customer.

Having an impressive site does not require spending a fortune. Likewise, spending a fortune does not ensure an impressive site design. The key to achieving an affordable small business web design lies in finding a design company who can balance quality with cost. Getting the most value for your design budget should be their primary goal. They should be willing to learn about your business and your needs or goals. They can then take that information, combined with your business image and niche, to create just the right web presence to attract your ideal customers.

The "look and feel" of your business website sets the tone for visitors. Ensuring your site accurately portrays your image requires an understanding of your company's values and objectives. The right design firm will take the time to get to know those values and objectives so your new home on the web matches the overall image you want to impress on visitors. Focusing on customer needs is simply good customer service and does not require a big price tag. To increase the return on your website investment, find a design company who offers affordable small business web design while still meeting your needs and impressing your visitors.

Small Business Web Designer - How to Find a Website Building Company

Looking for a Small Business Web Designer? By following these 4 tips you can be sure the web service you pick to do your small business website will be affordable and willing to guarantee your satisfaction. There are different reasons to have a company website and these tips will outline a few of these benefits.

1. How much do you want to spend to have a simple professional looking website? With so many web site options out there you can find an affordable web designer to fit your company's needs. Ask if you can see the finished product before you pay any fees, this is an added protection to you.

2. Can you speak directly with the owner or another human being who is a decision maker at the web designing company? Being able to talk with the owner or the person doing the work will allow you to properly get a game plan with them as to what items and details you specifically want on your website so your customers can find out all the different areas of expertise that your small business provides.

3. Is the website builder willing to guarantee their work? Ask if you can see the finished website before you actually pay out of pocket to have it published on the web. A business who doesn't expect money upfront shows that they truly care about their work and your satisfaction.

4. How soon do you need the website up and running? For most small businesses a simple 3 to 5 page website will suit all their needs. With this said any professional web designer or site building company should be able to give you an exact date to expect your website to be completed for your review.

Knowing these quick tips will allow you to find the right web site builders for your website. Don't pay before you get to see the site is right for your company and make sure you don't have to pay outrageous fees for a simple 3 to 5 page website. You can now call and speak a professional Small Business Web Designer about having your website built.

Small Business Web Design - How to Design a Great Website

Designing a website can be a determining factor in how successful your business can be. With a great website design you can attract more customers or clients. Working with a business that is experienced with small business web design can make all the difference. They can help take a small business and turn it into something bigger when it has a great website behind it. Here are a few tips to think about when designing a website for your small business.

Features: When designing your website there is an endless list of features you could use to improve the look and quality. For example, you could include features that can be helpful such as email, blog, forum, or recent news just to name a few. Having a blog or feedback spot on your website can attract potential customers because they can read actual reviews of your business. Remember not to go crazy with features on your website, too many features can be overwhelming to some people.

Graphics: The use of graphics in your small business web design can let your customers see the brands you sell. You can also have a customized graphic of your business logo to let them see what it is that you do and why they would be smart to buy from you.

Ease of Use: This might be the most important factor to consider when you are designing a website for your small business. It can be frustrating for customers when they are surrounded by useless information. It is important to make your small business web design easy to navigate so that your potential clients or customers will not be turned off by your website, they should be excited about how useful it is and easy to figure out.

Once you have designed a great small business web design, you will find that the time and stress you put into it will be worth the effort. Just be sure to include the information that is most important to your business and not fill your site with useless junk. In the long run it will save you energy, time and money and your customers will like it as well.

Choosing a Small Business Web Design Company

Choosing the right web design company can be a very tedious task. There are thousands of small business web design companies and some not even companies at all. Doing research is very important before choosing a web design company for your small business. Small businesses have unique challenges whether being a start up or a company operating already. Most companies have strict budgets and the last thing that business wants is to get taken for a ride and have to shell out more money than originally wanted. Good news for you business owners, I am about to give you some tips on choosing a small business web design company that is perfect for your company.

The first and maybe the most important thing is due diligence. Doing research on a company is critical before signing contracts or handing any money over. Do a quick Google search with the companies name as the keyword. If you are seeing positive results then that's a good thing. If you are seeing rip off reports, or complaint boards coming up that is a big negative. As a small business web design company owner I would never give money to a company that has negative listings on Google. There can be some exceptions to the rule but highly unlikely.

The second important tip is to look at the work that small business web Design Company has completed. Compare the portfolio with multiple companies. You will be able to see the difference between good design and bad design. If you take a look at the portfolio and it's not up to par then I would move on to the next company. The small business web design company portfolio speaks volumes for the creativity and cleanliness of the designs they can develop for your business.

Another great way to find the right small business web design company for you is calling and speaking to someone over the phone. If you are calling companies and never getting a response back from them or you are getting voice mails all the time that should raise a red flag. Submit an online quote request and see how fast they get back to you on business days. Our company responds within 24 hours to all quote requests submitted during the week, whether it is by email or phone. If the company is not responding quickly then that should give you a heads up on how they do business and I would stay clear of that company.

The last and final tip I can suggest to small business owners looking to have a small business web design company create their website is to use a design company that is located in the USA. Sure you can save a ton of money by farming your work to India, but think about it for a minute. In this day and age you get what you pay for. I have had tons of clients tell me that exact same thing and it's really true! Most of the work that is done overseas is very low quality design and development coding. Would you rather pay a little extra to get your small business website done properly or would you want to pay a small business web design company twice to fix or start over on the errors that happened by outsourcing your project. Another thing about using outside the USA companies is there policies can be very vague and if they disappear with your money you are out everything you spent and have nothing to show for it. At least with the USA laws you can try to collect from that company by contacting your local law enforcement or attorney general. Language barrier is also another key problem to using companies overseas.

If you follow the tips I have supplied in this article you will find that perfect small business web design company to help you achieve all your business goals and needs.

The Importance of Small Business Web Design

Small businesses have a lot to evaluate, but really the most important thing is attracting customers.

In a challenging economy, that can be much easier said than done. Try taking a step back and evaluating things from your customer's perspective. Customers have needs, and want to locate the places that meet that need as quickly as possible.

There's always the phone book, but there are questions that go along with the purchase. It'd be best to get answers without having to make several phone calls, and doing all that investigative work. So instead of the phone book, many customers will sit down at their computer and do an Internet search.

This is where quality small business web design comes into play. For a web site to be completely successful, it needs to be strong in three areas, all equally important. If one area is lacking, it could be detrimental for your web site.

First, you'll want your business to come up in searches, such as the example above. Otherwise the hard work sunk into other phases of the project is pointless. Your web site needs to work for you to attract new customers, and be search engine friendly. While it is impossible to directly predict or guarantee anything the search engines may do, there are plenty of things web designers and even the business owners can do to aid the site's chances of success in this area.

Next, the site also needs to be well-designed and inviting for customers. An attractive design will go a long way in keeping customers interested in your web site, and ultimately your brand. There also needs to be a clear navigational layout to the web site, so that customers can find their way around and get the information that they need.

Last, but still important, is a web site's written message. The message needs to be quick and clear. It needs to answer the original question that the customer came for. It needs to do this while being well written at the same time. Nothing will turn a customer away quicker than spelling or grammar errors.

Small business web design needs to strike a balance in all these areas in order to succeed, and a strong web site is one of the best marketing tools that a business can have right now to attract new customers.

Why Small Business Web Design Gets a Bad Name: Findability, Branding and Content

Part 1: Findability The findability of most small business websites is so poor that the only prospects who ever make it to your site were probably already aware of your company and were searching specifically for you. Maybe they typed in the url off of your business card, or clicked your link in your email signature. This is good, but what about the mass of people who are searching for your products or services, who don't yet know that you exist? Will your website show up in their Google searches, Facebook combing, LinkedIn asking, or forum posting? How many times have you heard a business owner gripe over the lack of "results" that they have seen from their website? The problem is that results come from actually doing something on an ongoing basis, in a skilled way.

  • search engine optimization
  • online advertising
  • Google AdWords
  • social media marketing
  • content development
  • traditional advertising
  • blogging
  • link-building
  • email marketing
  • direct mail

These all need to work together from a big picture plan, down to the nitty-gritty, in order to have a truly findable website. Only then can you start to get down to the real nuts-and-bolts of what really works or doesn't work on the website. Moral of the story: don't bash a site until you're doing all of the right things to get people to the site. If you're getting traffic, and still no conversions, then you know you've really got an on-site issue.

Part 2: Branding

In Part 2, we will go over Branding, how many small business websites fail to execute it effectively, and what effect that has on the business. Firstly, what is branding? Branding is an umbrella term for the overall perception of your business. For our purposes, true branding is the sum of all of the intentional efforts that you make to portray a certain attitude, emotion, philosophy, or value about your business. This includes your logo, your brochures, the typefaces and colors that you use, how you answer the telephone, and of course, your website. Basically, your brand, and your website, is responsible to give the right vibes. How do you want your company to appear? Corporate? Friendly? Authoritative? Neighborhood beauty shop, or celebrity stylist? We'll come to you, or you come to us? You must have a clear and detailed answer to this question - an answer that is tied to your business goals. Then all of your website's visuals, interactions, copywriting, structure and functionality must follow suit. You might think that the most common problem with small business web design that fails to brand effectively is that they choose the wrong voice - that the website presents the wrong answer to the "Who are you?" question - a friendly, neighborhood family accountant coming off as an impersonal tax cruncher, for example.

While that is often the case, just as often the website looks almost totally unbranded. The small business website design is too often an afterthought executed in between the operational hubub of actually running the business. It gets tossed up onto the web without any inkling of the true personality of the organization, but instead looks templated, unprofessional, nondescript, and worst of all, forgettable. Let's say you're that neighborhood, family-values accountant - would you rather your receptionist answer the phone flatly, "XYZ Taxes." Or in a friendly tone, "Good Morning, XYZ Family Finance Consultants, how can we help ensure your family's financial comfort?" Which do you think your callers will remember? The Branding segment's answer to the question, "Why does small business web design get a bad name?" is this: Upon hearing your dull receptionist answer the phone forgettably, you should demand that he do better to represent your brand, or hire somebody who will. Just the same, while working with your online marketing company in developing your website, you should ensure that you ask the right questions. Once they've been answered completely, ensure that, based on those answers, your website is a clear and compelling representation of your brand's personality and purpose.

Part 3: Website Content

A big problem for small business websites is not having content that is well-written and structured. Once someone has found your website, you want to be able to grab their attention and tell them how they will benefit from using your services in a way that will hold their interest. There are 3 very important factors to the content on your website: Content Strategy In most cases, when a company wants a website built, the last thing they tend to think about is how relevant and interesting the content is to the visitors of their site. They fill the site with an overabundance of "fluff" that only serves the purpose of filling up the pages. This kind of content consists of vague and confusing statements which usually don't give the potential client a direct answer as to HOW they are going to serve them. This is indeed one of the failings in small business web design. This is where "Content Strategy" comes in.

This is the planning stage. You have to think about how relevant the content would be to your target audience and write about what you know they would care about most. Get to the heart of what you're offering, but if you need to get there through the side-door, do it. Find the middle ground between your readers' interests and your core offerings and value. When you have a clear Content Strategy, you have a plan for growth which is more than essential in small business web design. Your blog posts will all follow a relevant theme, your new pages will be on-point, even your email blasts will have a compass to your reader's clicks. Content Language When someone visits your site, they already have a certain goal in mind. When you've figured this out in your Content Strategy, you must then provide information that is straightforward, concise and if appropriate, entertaining. Web content is not like print content. People do not want to read brochure fluff. They expect to be spoken to directly in a conversational tone. They expect action-oriented copy that stays on point and serves them, not your business.

Further, when writing web content you need to quite literally choose your words. Having a strong search engine strategy in place will allow you to pepper every piece of content with keyword phrases that search engines will gobble up and serve to searchers on a silver platter (otherwise known as the first page of Google). Content Structure Structure your content so that the path to what your potential client is looking for could be easily found and acted upon. This includes both the internal structure of each content piece as well as the structure of your site's navigation. Time is of the essence, most people just move on if they can't find what they what and need right away. Have a clear path to relevant content based on what the user is currently viewing and how they got to you. Use bullet points, callouts, headlines, and get to the point quickly. Don't try to build up suspense in the first paragraph and hit them with a bang in the fourth, which happens quite a bit in small business web design. Hit them with relevant content in the first sentence. Content Should Be:

  • to-the-point
  • action-oriented
  • easy to read (bullets, highlights, callouts, sidebars)
  • clearly organized
  • conversational
  • SEO friendly

By having a well-written website with a well-planned content strategy, you could potentially increase the amount of business you are taking in. This will be due to your site being much more organized, interesting, visible and geared toward the customer's needs.


Pay close attention to the website findability, website branding, and website content of your small business web design and you will have a formula that even the flashiest websites that ignore these can't beat. Prospects will FIND you, prospects will RECOGNIZE you, and prospects will RESPECT you.

7 Tips For Great Small Business Web Design

Getting small business web design right can seem a daunting task to someone who knows nothing about website design. However if you are undertaking a web design then there are some steps that you can take to help ensure success for your site and your business.

  1. Don't get over ambitious. Web design for a small business is just that. It shouldn't try to compete with Google, the BBC, CNN, CNET or any of the other big websites. Instead start small and build up gradually.
  2. Get someone to help you. If you don't know about web design then get a professional to help. Often people think that they can simply buy a template website off the shelf and that will be good enough. The reality is very different. Building great websites is tough and technical, get help.
  3. Small business web design shouldn't just be about the building of the site. You want to find and use a company that are going to help you as your website grows. So make sure whoever you use has help built into the package.
  4. Don't get hung up on the graphics. Some of the best web sites are mostly text. Think of Google almost no graphics! So don't believe those who tell you, you need to have the graphics to attract - you don't!
  5. Small business web design needs to take a long term view. Don't get caught in the trap of getting a website now and then having to completely redo the site in 6 months time. Build the site so that it can grow as your web presence grows.
  6. Think about how your website will relate to your business. There is no point in having a website for your small business if it isn't adding value. Figure out what that value should be and then measure it.
  7. Don't be afraid to experiment. Change is one of the strongest aspects of the web. Make sure that your small business web design accounts for that need for change. There is nothing more boring to visitors than viewing the same website they saw 1 year ago.

These 7 tips are really just a starting point. If you know little about small business web design then you'd be best to find someone who can help. Often small businesses think that it'll be expensive to get that help but it needn't be. Look around and you'll find that you can get good deals.

Small Business Web Design Services

If you need to convey the message of your small business to your targeted audience, just opt for the support of small business web design services. A professionally designed website ensures a successful online presence, which plays a major role in today's online world as websites are accessed by millions worldwide. Web design services are vital for search engine optimization, and effective search engine optimization will increase the rank of your website on leading search engines such as Google, MSN, Alta Vista, and Yahoo.

In web design, creativity plays an important role and the website has to be user friendly as well, to attract and retain the maximum number of visitors. Providers of small business web design services in the United States offer site maintenance and site redesign service for new and existing businesses. Their services focus on optimization methods that will boost the client's business. Professional web design involves elements such as graphic art, graphic elements, layout, structure, text formatting and coordinating. Unique and functional website design and development services include:

- Flash development - Dynamic website template design - Banner creation - Web page programming - Calendar applications - E-commerce website creation including shopping carts, credit cards, shipping gateways and online catalogue - Logo design - 2D and 3D animated graphics creation - Flash headers and photo slideshows - JavaScript programming - Audio and video streaming - CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) and HTML code - Digital photograph optimization

The site is given a professional and unique look with the efforts of the creative website design team, which comprises animators, webmasters, graphic designers, content writers, Flash and HTML experts, and other professionals. Understanding your business needs, expert designers and developers in web design companies create visually compelling websites that are easy to use, easy to navigate, easy to maintain, attractive, quick loading, and search engine friendly. Any size visual design projects are undertaken, ranging from initial concept and planning to final upload, including search engine optimization and PHP programming.

An eye-catching website design creates a long lasting and positive impression of your business among your existing clients and new ones.

Powerful and user-friendly web design with special effects ensures the following:

- Turns websites into dynamic business assets - Increases high quality traffic - Enhances your profitability - Reflects your business brands and enable your business to grow fast - Promotes your online business and helps your small business to compete with big businesses - Increases your market exposure

On the whole, small business web design services are aimed at enhancing your website functionality and increase the usability of your website.

The Challenge of Web 2.0 for Small Business Web Design

The idea of Web 2.0 has really caught on although it was unheard of just a few short years ago. Today, Web 2.0 is known as the second generation of the web and since Web 1.0 lots of changes have taken place that can make small business web design a challenge. It's certainly not impossible, it's just that in the new Web there are different things that work than before and it is important for small business websites to be aware of the important features of their website in the new generation of the web.

For example, if you are using a Utah web design company to update your website or even design you a new one you want to know they are competent with the features that work best in Web 2.0. A great example is Google Adsense, which basically replaced DoubleClick in the new generation of the web. If you are working with a Utah Internet marketing firm and they are working with DoubleClick still instead of Google AdSense you will want to find someone else to work with. That's because today Google AdSense is a great way to make money on your website and any web design company should know what AdSense is as well as its importance on the web. Another great example of the change from Web 1.0 to Web 2.0 is Britannica Online to Wikipedia. The first was just a regular old encyclopedia website where basic information could be found. Wikipidia however is a super encyclopedia that has information on anything and everything imaginable and that users can add information to in order to make the entry more complete. These are just some of the ways the web has changed and small business websites need to keep up with the changes to stay competitive.

That means things like blogging, RSS, keyword articles, backlinks, and more should be part of a small business's vocabulary in order to truly understand how a website should be designed. And, if the small business is not aware of the importance of these features on Web 2.0 then Utah web design company should certainly know what they are and how to utilize them. Small businesses find it hard to keep up with rapid changes because these businesses focus on just that, their business, and knowing what's going on web wide can be a major challenge. Nevertheless, it is very important for small businesses to pay attention and stay abreast of Web 2.0 and its changes so they can keep their website up to date and going strong.

Small Business Web Design And Development

The demand for Information Technology has driven many people to delve into its world. As software designs become more user-friendly, creating Web site designs is fast becoming a hobby for a number of people. But there are also many entrepreneurial individuals who make Web design and development a source of income. These sophisticated acts of programming and designing are not the exclusive domain of big IT companies anymore.

Small businesses with limited budgets earmarked for marketing and stakeholder management should take advantage of the growing number of Web designers and developers. This means more creative concepts and technological know-how to choose from and work with. A well-constructed site can draw in many potential customers and result to higher sales revenue. With a Web site, small businesses can develop structures that will build a stronger relationship with clients through company e-magazines, chat rooms and other feedback mechanisms. A Web site is also accessible by millions of people all around the world, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This means that companies with Web sites have that much audience and room for growth. This is below-the-line marketing at its best.

Finding the right kind of Web developer is of course a big challenge. Most times you will meet them for the first time in the bidding process where they will outdo each other with impressive concept presentations. But a good small business Web designer and developer goes beyond producing the best Web site for the client. He or she gives a comprehensive after sales service program-- like troubleshooting, Web management and maintenance, and hosting. This is important especially for small businesses that do not have their own IT departments or staff dedicated to the Web site. In the long run, companies that offer these kinds of services give more value and appeal to their products.

The Three Essentials For Effective Small Business Web Design

To get the very most out of your small business web design or any type of business web design for that matter, you need to address three very important essentials.

The reality though, for many small business websites and blogs is that very few even come close to addressing just one of these essentials for good business web design and as a consequence many fall well short of providing any real benefit for the business they represent.

As a consequence this leaves the door wide open for businesses who understand these three essentials, to really take advantage and out compete their competition when it comes to being profitable and staying around for the long term.

Therefore the first essential for good small business web design is to be able to attract prospects. Many business websites have the ability to attract large volumes of traffic but very few of them have the ability attract traffic that is 100% relevant to what they selling and the reason why is this.

Very few small business websites have their keywords set up correctly. They often use keywords that are too broad, they use keywords that are irrelevant, they use the same set of keywords on every page and in some cases they don't even use keywords at all. As a consequence all the good off site SEO they may be doing, which can send large volume of traffic to their site, can be wasted.

Therefore to increase the amount of prospects to your small business website your web design first needs to take into account good keyword research and good keyword usage throughout your site.

The next essential for good small business web design is to be able to stop your relevant traffic from clicking away once they land on your site. One of the biggest mistakes business owners make is they talk too much about themselves and their business. All prospects want to know about is what you can do for them to satisfy their needs and what the benefits are to them in either buying your products or using your services.

You, as a business owner, need to appeal to your customers needs and you need to do it in a manner that earns their trust and displays to them that you are credible and can follow through with your claims and promises. This is by far the biggest area where many small business web designs fall well short and consequently lose customers there and then.

The third essential to good small business web design has to do with the process of turning the prospect into a customer. This process begins with the second essential but won't be completed unless you have one final essential ingredient, a "Call To Action".

Now many websites do have a call to action but in many cases they are way too soft. They either infer that a certain action should be taken or they simple list a long list of features of their product or service and then expect the prospect to then just hit the buy button, fill in the contact form or pick up the phone to make an appointment.

Therefore to complete the process you need to tell your prospect exactly what you want them to do. It needs to be clear, it needs to be enticing and it needs to be credible.

So these are the three essentials to small business web design. You need to attract more prospects to your site, via the use of well researched keywords followed up with good off site SEO. You then need to be able to engage those prospects straight away, so they don't click away by satisfying their needs and wants. Then finally you need to have a "Call To Action" that is enticing and appeals to what the prospect is looking for.

If you can integrate these three essentials into your small business web design you will be well on your way to having a profitable business site that adds value to your business and sends you customers like you've never seen before.

Small Business Web Design - Enhance Online Presence

With an efficiently designed website, small business dealers can create a good impression and attract more people to their business. Small business web design services are now provided by leading companies in the field which aim at enhancing the online presence of their clients, thereby bringing more visitors to these websites.

Small business web design companies utilize the services of web developers and talented SEO professionals. Depending on the business owners' needs, they carry out any sort of web design including data driven, custom, multimedia, flash, and E commerce. These providers can also redesign your existing website for a better look.

With creatively designed websites, proper communication with the website visitors can be attained. An ideal designer highlights the company products and information, appropriately blending graphics and advertising tools. Web designers take care of all aspects involved such as planning, designing, page layout and final finishing touches.

Besides having search engine optimized content, websites have to be effectively designed if you want to attract the right people to your business. To draw more customers, web designers normally utilize effective web design tools. Java, Flash, Video, Audio, CSS based and fast loadable websites are designed by the professionals. Incorporating innovative technology programs such as XML, MySQL, XHTML, PHP, and Javascript, they provide attractive website designs.

Professional website designing is available for all kinds of websites such as those dealing with real estate, finance, E-commerce, education, medicine, family, teens and more. Nowadays these services are available at economical rates to meet the needs of small businesses and home based businesses.

A perfectly designed website will be search engine friendly, meta tag optimized and properly linked with the other pages. So, if you wish to redesign your existing website or are planning to design a new one for your small business, ensure that you associate with a reliable and experienced web design service provider.

Small Business Web Design Service

Apart from being an important center in the financial and manufacturing sector, New York also serves as the hub for a large number of small business firms. To help these firms emerge as powerful businesses in New York, a number of small business web design firms are now offering their value added services at affordable rates.

Most New York based web design companies are highly competitive and aim at ensuring increased business opportunities for clients through effective web design and implementation services. These web design firms in New York are equipped with the latest high-end graphics software and web development software. They also have the services of experienced programmers working with them. With such expertise, most web pages being developed by these firms maintain contemporary standards with interactive features including audio and video incorporated in them.

With lots of competitive websites being uploaded frequently, higher search engine rankings are crucial for an increased volume of user traffic. To attain such top ranking in major search engines such as Google, Yahoo and MSN, most web design firms in New York also offer dedicated Search Engine Optimization (SEO) services. The organic SEO methods such as 'The White Hat Method' being adopted by these web design firms are so successful that their client websites often find a top position in the search results of major search giants.

Most of these web design companies also undertake other related services such as online marketing, paid advertising and Pay per Click (PPC) services. Besides, they provide redesign services for existing websites which will give them a more professional image.

To address the needs of the increasing small business communities in New York, most web design firms in New York are now providing their services in all major cities including Albany, Beacon, Buffalo, Cortland, Fulton, Glen Cove, Hudson, Jamestown, Middletown, Rochester and Watertown in New York. The quality services being offered by the small business web design firms in New York can surely make a positive and progressive impact on your small business venture.