The Science of Website Design
Website design is offered by countless companies and consultants. Some even offer it as a loss leader (a free or low-cost enticement to purchase other related services such as website hosting). It is true that there is no great magic to creating a few simple web pages and publishing them on the internet. However, professional website designers offer something more. They bring the hard won knowledge of what works and what doesn’t as well as how to optimize your site to ensure it achieves optimum ranking in search. The process known as SEO (search engine optimization.
If you are thinking about creating a website for your business – STOP! Start looking for a competent designer and begin as soon as possible. Allow me to provide a few reasons for such a dramatic statement. Without a website, you are virtually invisible to potential clients and customers. With the exception of certain narrow demographics, the vast majority of consumers and businesses now search for what they need online.
Another important reason to get a well designed website on the internet as soon as possible is to take advantage of the concept of cross-platform advertising. You should include your website address in every type of marketing material you create (i.e. business cards, stationary, newspaper, radio spots, etc.) This branding will help drive traffic to your website, which moves your site higher in search engine results, providing the opportunity to establish a recognized presence and generate the best return for your marketing dollars.
Start by considering the answers to the following questions, which your web designer will need to help you make informed, goal-based design choices. What is the purpose of your website? Are you selling a service or merchandise? Do you intend to sell online (eCommerce)? Who is your target market or demographic (i.e. age, sex, ethnicity, income level, wholesale or retail, etc.)? What sort of information do they expect and need? How frequently will the site be updated? Who will make those changes, the website designer or in-house staff?
Smart entrepreneurs often know the answer to some of these questions. Some even feel comfortable using their basic technological competence to create a website with one of the free or nearly free tools available on the internet. Sites like these are plentiful. However, the sites these tools help you create are also nearly invisible to most internet users because a functional presence is only the beginning of the process.
SEO – Search Engine Optimization
A professional website design will consider the optimization of text, pictures and other design elements that allow search engines and directories to effectively find, index and drive traffic to your site. We can educate you about these processes so that you will understand what is needed to realize your vision. Good designers can help you manage the processes that will allow you to achieve your best search ranking. Z Logic can insure that you understand all of the important fundamentals so that you will not be impeded as you grow your ranking organically.
Layout & Responsive Design
As cost is often a big factor when deciding how to implement or redesign a website, Z Logic strongly encourages the use of pre-formatted templates or themes (i.e. ready to use layouts) as the basis of most small business websites. Templates have many advantages including code that has been well tested and meets industry standards without lengthy proofing and elements that have already been field tested in most web browsers on numerous devices. Most themes are customizable to incorporate your personality or corporate branding.
A responsive website design is also essential (i.e. one that automatically resizes for viewing on desktops, laptops, tablets and smartphones). An ever larger number of internet users only use a smartphone or other portable devices to access the internet. A website designed only for a traditional full screen monitor is no longer acceptable.
Social Media Marketing
Many businesses, particularly local ones, can benefit from a social media presence and marketing program. Like it or not, social media has become a part of the fabric of life. Conversations between family, friends and associates that previously occurred via telephone and social gatherings now occur more commonly via social platforms on the internet. Ignoring this environment is a monumental mistake made by many business owners often due to a reluctance to embrace new technologies, unwarranted fear or lack of knowledge. A well crafted social media outreach can produce more marketing and public relations benefits for the money and effort than almost any other method. We can teach you how to leverage these platforms and turn them into cost effective tools for promoting brand awareness, driving traffic to your website, improving your reputation and most importantly – driving sales.
Z Logic provides consultation regarding website design, SEO, social media marketing and other aspects of establishing and managing a business presence online. While we do provide turnkey “presence” websites and publishing, our emphasis is on educating small business owners in the early stages of the process so they can move forward with knowledge. It is essential to have certain keystone information to effectively oversee what will become an ongoing process – continuing as long as you have an internet presence, which today is akin to saying “as long as you own your business”. Z Logic will empower you with clear, impartial guidance to develop, implement and manage an effective internet presence.