Before launching your website, it’s important to plan where your traffic will come from. At The Web Designer Group, we discuss your goals as part of the brief and create a web design to suit your marketing plans. For example, if most of your traffic will come from Instagram, we’ll suggest a gallery of live feed from your Instagram account along with share and engagement tools to make Instagram users feel instantly at home. Alternatively, if most of your traffic will be a result of free organic search, take advantage of one of our SEO packages to ensure that your website is appearing in Google for the appropriate keywords. https://thewebdesignergroup.co.uk/seo-agency
Here’s a simple breakdown of traffic sources:
Visitors who land on your site because they searched using keywords in a search engine such as Google or Bing. This is unpaid traffic, meaning they didn’t click on any adverts. A few years ago, website owners were able to see in their Google Analytics account which keywords visitors used to find them. However, due to changes in privacy laws, that data is now hidden by Google and searches are bundled together under ‘Organic Traffic’. Fortunately, website owners can still see keyword searches used by visitors who clicked on a Google paid advert, so be sure to take review that data if you are running paid campaigns.
Paid search is exactly as it sounds. Users clicking on a link in a paid advert on a search engine. Sometimes known as PPC (Pay Per Click).
Paid can also refer to adverts on social media, such as Facebook ads. Display ads are the boxes you see on websites, usually on a top banner or a box on the right. These ads can follow you around the internet until you delete the cookies on your device. They are known as Remarketing Ads.
These visitors land on your site by entering your URL directly into a web browser. They already know your company name and didn’t click any links or search using keywords. Direct traffic can be the result of outreach campaigns where your URL is mentioned in print, or the result of influencers mentioning your company, but not including a link.
Referral traffic is from a link that originate outside of a search engine. For example, when a blogger writes a review of your company and links to your site from their web page. Referral traffic is often high quality, because the visitor already knows about your company and may have come from a site recommending you, or from a site with shared interests.
Social referrals come from Facebook, Instagram and other social platforms. A referral on your SEO report from m.facebook.com is a visitor using Facebook’s mobile app.
How to get more social referrals?
Post quality content regularly on social media.
Contact influencers in your field and try to collaborate on reviews, giveaways and competitions.
Sign up to Q&A platforms which are relevant to your industry, such as Quora. Provide a quality answer and insert a non-spammy link that adds value to answer. (Check T&Cs that links are allowed first).
Create well-designed videos and share on multiple social channels.
Look for opportunities to guest post on quality sites and include a link to your own site in your bio.
All website owners should regularly review their traffic sources in Google Analytics in order to hone their SEO strategy. At The Web Designer Group, we can help maximise traffic with our SEO services. Not all traffic is equal. We’ll help to identify where your high-converting traffic is generated and to increase the quantity of those clicks. Good web designing involves both on-page and off-page SEO, which may be too time-consuming for a business owner who needs to get on with the real business of running the company. Getting traffic to your website can make or break a business, which means that SEO is a priority that no company can afford to overlook. Let us help you with an SEO package that best suits your company’s size and goals.
When having your web site designed, a key element is an opt-in marketing box to capture email subscribers. Many companies are guilty of spending a lot of time and energy building their subscriber list, but only a day or two on their newsletter campaign strategy and design. Here’s our advice for creating a newsletter your customers will engage with.
First, decide why customers should read your newsletter. Don’t be tempted to hash together a poorly executed monthly newsletter just because your competitors are doing it. Most people are time-poor and tired of unsolicited mail. Be strategic and aim to exceed your customer’s expectations with your newsletter. Is it a good read? Is it educational? How do your customers benefit from reading it? Do some research into newsletters within your industry to evaluate strengths and weaknesses. Which newsletters do you read, which do you unsubscribe from and why?
Once you have researched competitor newsletters, re-assess your own company’s goals. Are you trying to get new leads? Do you want to prompt repeat orders from existing customers? Having a carefully segmented distribution list will ensure that each newsletter is targeted to the correct demographic at the appropriate time in your customer’s journey.
Be sure to balance the content between educational, entertainment and promotional. If you wish to avoid recipients unsubscribing at an alarming rate, keep promotional content to less than 15%. Rather than packing your newsletter full of company news and product launches, create one clear, enticing promotion and include an obvious call to action. Avoid the temptation to splatter your newsletter with buttons that dilute your real goal. Feel free to link out to pages you want customers to read (including third-party sites if it improves your trust and value reputation) but check the call-to-action at the bottom of pages you own. Keep your goal consistent.
The title of a newsletter is of paramount importance. Get it wrong and few people will open your superbly crafted newsletter, never mind read it. Experiment with several titles and ask for feedback from colleagues. Keep it short and always about the customer – not about your company. ‘We’ve won an award!’ is about your company and will send your customers to sleep. ‘The Most Romantic Places to Celebrate Valentine’s Day’ is about them. Be daring, creative and innovative, but remember that the title should be a true reflection of the content of the newsletter. Nobody likes to feel tricked.
Successful newsletters are often designed so that customers can scan content quickly — allowing them to cherry-pick what they want to read. Newsletter design and copy should be minimal, non-distracting and feature click-bait titles with an enticing excerpt and a link to the complete article hosted elsewhere.
A newsletter can be more effective if it focuses on one topic, rather than announcing every piece of news and product launch your company is pushing out this month. Depending on your industry, you could plan ahead to suit the holiday calendar. For example, creating timely newsletters related to Christmas closures, Valentine’s Day, Halloween, sporting events and national awareness days.
On a practical note, we have all received newsletters where images don’t show up due to HTML settings. Be sure to include alt text when uploading images so the recipient can at least read a text description of the image instead.
Use it cross-channel. The days of a newsletter being confined to email are over. Once you have created content, as well as putting it into an email template, disseminate the articles through all of your social media channels. Think of social media posts as bit-size chunks of a longer newsletter. Put them out on the same day as your email campaign. If your newsletter posts are interesting, your customers will come to expect them and will be more likely to share or comment. Newsletter campaigns deserve your time. They drive traffic to your site and boost your profile. If you’d like help devising newsletter campaigns or on any other aspect of digital marketing, contact The Web Designer Group for information on our social media management and marketing services.
You have a stunning new web site design and plan to update it regularly by keeping the imagery and content fresh. At The Web Designer Group, we offer maintenance plans to keep your site looking its best, but if you’d like to maintain your site like a pro, here are a few tips on selecting the correct file type.
Have you ever noticed that some websites contain images which are stretched and distorted? More often seen on older websites, product photos might be elongated. Logos sometimes appear too large for the space or pixelated and low-quality. This is because they have been uploaded in the wrong proportion or at the wrong scale. A website container box is a fixed shape. Let’s say a website container box is square or rectangular. The uploaded image needs to be the same shape as the container box – square or rectangular. A square image uploaded to a rectangular box will be stretched in one direction. A rectangular image uploaded to a square box will be cropped. This can be disastrous for conversions on an e-commerce site. Who wants to risk buying a product that they cannot actually see? What does it tell them about your company that you can’t even get an image right on a website? These days, with in-built editors and responsive themes designed to render fluidly on all devices, it’s less likely that your images will distort. But you can save yourself time by understanding proportion, resolution and file type when maintaining your own website.
Every photo you see online or in print is a raster image. Raster images are constructed by a series of pixels, or individual blocks, to form an image. JPEG, GIF, and PNG are all raster image extensions. PNG, by the way, allows an image to have a transparent background, which is why they are often used for icons and logos. When the pixels are stretched to fill space they were not originally intended to fit, they become distorted, resulting in blurry images.
To retain pixel quality, you cannot resize raster images without compromising their resolution. Therefore, it is important to remember to save raster files at the exact dimensions needed for the application. How can you do this? Find out the container size on your website and resize images using the website’s built-in editor, a free online image converter or open-source software such as GIMP. If you plan on manipulating and resizing lots of images, you might want to invest in paid software, such as Adobe Photoshop.
Logos are created as vector images. Vector images are far more flexible and are constructed using proportional formulas rather than pixels. EPS and AI are examples of vector images and they are ideal for creating graphics that require frequent resizing. Your logo will have been created as a vector and saved by your designer for in a variety of formats for use online and in print. Unlike raster images which can’t be scaled up significantly without losing resolution and becoming pixelated, vectors can be resized very small, for a business card for example, or blown up to billboard dimensions. If you have a logo created professionally, be sure to keep a copy of the original vector file.
TIFF was traditionally the best file type for printed images, although most print companies these days work from a PDF and may request a backup copy of the original artwork file with all assets, such as fonts included in a zipped folder. Print companies will supply you with clear guidelines for how they wish to receive your artwork to achieve the best results.
Here’s a list of the most common file types and how to use them:
JPEG (or JPG) – Joint Photographic Experts Group
Used for still images and photography. Millions of colours. Cannot preserve transparency.
PNG – Portable Network Graphics
Used for web graphics that require transparency or colour-heavy images. Can be re-edited and re-exported without much loss.
GIF – Graphics Interchange Format
Used for simple animations. Maximum of 256 colours. Transparency is an option.
SVG – Scalable Vector Graphics
Suited to displaying logos, icons, maps, flags, charts, and other graphics created in vector graphics applications such as Inkscape, Illustrator and Sketch. A recent file type which isn’t widely accepted by web and social media platforms.
TIFF – Tagged Image File
Popular among graphic artists, the publishing industry, and photographers for storing raster graphics images. Used widely in print publishing and larger than JPEGs.
PSD – Photoshop Document
An original Photoshop file used within Adobe software for manipulating and enhancing images. Usually exported as JPEG or PNG for wider use online and in print.
PDF – Portable Document Format
A popular format for files that need to be shared but not easily formatted. All of the design items on the document have essentially become a single ‘snap-shot’ image.
EPS – Encapsulated Postscript
Created by Adobe to encapsulate 2D image, bitmap and text into a single file. Primarily used by graphic designers exporting information from Adobe.
AI – Adobe Illustrator Document
An original graphic file in Adobe Illustrator. Widely used by graphic designers for logos and illustrations.
INDD – Adobe Indesign Document
An original file in Adobe Indesign. Widely used for presentations. Usually exported as PDF to be shared.
RAW – Raw Image Formats
A file which has not been altered, compressed, or manipulated in any way by the computer. Sometimes used in photography or video production. For more advice from a professional web designing agency.
We shouldn’t be afraid to offer our customers more than they originally asked for. Sometimes customers don’t know that a premium product or service is available, or they may need more information to understand how an upgrade or package is a better fit for their needs. Would you be offended if a ticket office clerk at a train station offered a first-class upgrade for £5? No. You can take it or leave it depending on your needs. Upselling is giving a customer information they may be grateful for.
At The Web Designer Group, we help implement effective upselling strategies on your website and in your digital marketing. Good web designing should naturally incorporate options for customers that will result in increased sales.
There are two main considerations when using upselling tactics to increase revenue:
The services or products you upsell should be related to the original product/service
You need to be sensitive to the anticipated price range of your customer
Once a customer has an anchor price in mind, they may not be enthusiastic about a higher price point. The product should fit the customer’s original needs and the customer should fully understand the benefit of the higher cost alternative. An anchor price is often the first number a customer sees, and it’s the number against which they compare other price points. Only upsell if a new product is a discernibly better fit than the original and worth the additional cost.
Not every customer is a good fit for an upsell, and you shouldn’t try to push additional products or services on someone who doesn’t need them. Turn into a sleazy salesperson and risk losing the customer’s original business. As a rule, if you can’t explain how the upsell will benefit their overall goals, then it’s not an upsell worth pursuing.
If you run an ecommerce business, you probably incorporate upsells already. Whether in a ‘buy one get one half-price’ deal, a dropdown on the product page offering personalised enhancements, such as engraving, or being offered gift wrap at checkout. Almost every website features upselling on product pages in the ‘you might be interested in’ section, or ‘other customers bought’. If you don’t already offer these, talk to your web design team about incorporating them.
Don’t forget that impulsive buyers are likely to say yes if you offer something at the point of payment. This works for ecommerce stores and for B2B services. Think of company which sells office cleaning services. Just as you agree a deal for regular cleaning, they offer to throw in a special deep clean on the first visit at 50% off. It’s tempting and very likely that you’ll say yes.
Upselling could easily net you 20% in additional revenue each year. Imagine what you could do with that additional 20%. You could spend it on PR or paid ads to generate even more revenue.
The bottom line is that upsells are ethical and expected business practice if done correctly. Remember that upsells must answer the customer’s needs and help them achieve their goals. If you aren’t incorporating upsells in your business, then you’re leaving money on the table for every sale you make.
You have been working with your website design agency on a new site. It looks great, functions well, and now you need to continue crafting unique content to attract visitors. We know that Google rewards websites which have fresh, relevant content added regularly. Once you have written your content, you’ll need images for thumbnails which appear on the blog category page, and for images within the body of the article. Perhaps you already own images or can use product images from a manufacturer. For more abstract or generic images that add interest to the text, royalty-free stock images are easily available and can be inexpensive or free.
Most stock image agencies have a variety of free and paid photos, illustrations, gifs and videos with efficient search bars and filters to get you to the images you need fast.
A few platforms will ask you to credit the photographer when you use the image. Some images are restricted on use – for example you might be permitted to use it in a blog article, but not print onto t-shirts and coffee mugs.
As these sites are free to join – you simply sign up with an email address – many make their money by featuring links to ‘sponsored’ images. If you click to upgrade to a paid image from a quality image library, such as Getty Images or Shutterstock, you can join and buy credits. Do explore these sites, as you’ll be pleasantly surprised by how inexpensive a professional image can be. Expect to pay from £7 for a professional image on Shutterstock for personal or online business use – not for commercial reproduction of the image on a product. Commercial reproduction would require a more expensive comprehensive commercial licence.
At The Web Designer Group, this is one of our favourite resources for free stock photos. Based in Germany, Pixabay is a vibrant community of creatives, sharing copyright free images and videos. All content is released under the Pixabay Licence, which makes them safe to use without asking for permission or giving credit to the artist – even for commercial purposes. Simply create an account and choose which size image file you need to download. There’s a huge choice of images and the search filter throws up highly accurate and intuitive results.
Like Pixabay, there are other royalty free image agencies from which you can download free or inexpensive images. Here are just a few:
Burst by Shopify
Unsplash from Squarespace
Download and Editing
When you are choosing images from a stock image agency, choose between small, medium and large file sizes – usually shown by pixel size. For example, 640px x 480px. The first number is width and the second number is height. Depending on your website platform, you may have a built-in image editor that allows you to crop and resize to fit the space upon upload. If not, check out Gimp, which is open-source software that has similar functionality to Photoshop, but unlike Adobe Photoshop, Gimp is free. There are numerous tutorials on YouTube to help you learn the tools.
When we design your website, we’ll advise you of optimum image sizes on handover of your site. Of course, you may wish for us to continue maintaining your site and content, in which case we’ll discuss article topics and frequency. Our services include search engine optimisation and social media marketing. So, if producing your own content and curating stock imagery is something you’d rather outsource to the experts, we are the web design agency for you.
Note: We are not affiliated to any of these sites. These links are being provided as a convenience and for informational purposes only; they do not constitute an endorsement or an approval by us for the products and services.
If you are planning your first ever website, you might be wondering what all the technical terms mean. At The Web Designer Group, we like to make the process as simple as possible for our clients, so here’s a brief guide to some of the technical terms you might see or hear.
Domain name – the unique, human-readable internet address of a website. For example, coca-cola.com is the domain name of the Coca-Cola website.
URL – A URL is the long string at the top of the website which denotes its address. For example, https://coca-cola.com is the URL for the Coca-Cola website. It originally stood for Uniform Resource Locator, although that is widely unknown today. You may notice that URLs start with either https or http. Https uses encryption and is more secure than http. Therefore, it is essential for websites that hold personal data or take payments. Newer websites tend to be https by default.
SEO – Search Engine Optimisation – modifications to a website which make it more attractive to to a search engine (such as Google or Bing). These modifications might include adding keyword tags to content or creating titles which make clear to search engines crawlers what the content is about. The aim of SEO is to increase the ranking of the content in search engine results. The higher the ranking, the more visitors to the site.
SERPS – Search Engine Results Pages. If your web page ranks number 2 in the SERPS for a particular keyword or phrase, that means it is listed in 2nd place when you type that keyword/phrase into a search engine. Paid adverts may appear higher than these natural (organic) results. We don’t count adverts when calculating position in SERPS.
Paid Search – online adverts which you pay to have shown to users who search for those keywords. For example, there are usually 3 or 4 paid adverts at the top every page in Google.
Organic Search Results – websites which are selected naturally by the search engine’s algorithms for their relevance and quality.
DA – Domain Authority. This is a ranking score used to predict how well a website will rank in the SERPS. It was developed by Moz, industry experts on SEO, and is scored from 1-100, using a partially disclosed logarithmic scale. Most websites start off with a score under 10. It’s easier to grow your score from 20 to 30 than it is to grow from 30 upwards. One way to increase the score of a website is to get more high-quality websites to link to it.
PA – Page Authority. The same as DA, but for single pages rather than a whole domain.
404 – Have you ever landed on a page and seen an error message that the page cannot be found? This is a 404 status code (HTTP) indicating the server could not find the requested website page. In other words, your web browser can connect with the server, but the specific page you’re trying to access can’t be reached.
301 – A 301 redirect is used when the site’s URL is changed for any reason. It sends visitors and search engines to a different URL than the one they originally requested — without them having to actually type in a different URL. E-commerce sites use this a lot when a particular product sells out. They may redirect it to a similar product which is still in stock or to a category page.
302 – A 302 status code is a temporary redirect. This means the page you want has been temporarily moved to another URL (users don’t notice a 302 redirect). For SEO purposes, it’s usually best to use a 301 redirect as opposed to a 302, because with a 302 redirect you lose the SEO link authority of the old page.
We hope that this short list of technical terms will help collaboration on your first website project to go smoothly. Generally-speaking, web designing can attract geeks and technology lovers who are so familiar with the jargon that we forget to explain it! We look forward to working with you on your first web design project.
A successful website begins with a clear brief. Number one on the list is your non-negotiable requirements, quickly followed by your wish-list of extras. To help you get your brief on paper, we’ve come up with a list of useful questions.
1. All about you
What does your company do? Do you have a brand stylesheet that you can share? If not, is branding something you want your web designer to help work on before building the website?
Don’t just think about where you are now. Your website will still be around in 2-3 years. What do you think your company will look like then? If you are ambitious with your company’s goals it should be reflected in your website.
What products or services do you offer? What do your target customers look like? Where do they hang out?
How long have you been operating? Number of staff? Do you have a brand story to share? Have you won any awards or received industry praise for what you do?
Does your brand have any charitable or environmental messages to deliver?
Share your mission statement if you have one. If you don’t have one yet, ask yourself why? Work on defining your purpose, values and goals.
2. Why do you need a new website now?
Are you rebranding? Launching a new business? Has your old website become obsolete?
If you have an existing site, what do you like and dislike about it?
Where is it hosted? Eventually your designer will point the domain name to the new site. The new site might come with an option of in-house hosting depending on the platform.
3. What do you want the website to achieve?
More online sales or in store sales?
More calls from customers? More emails? A higher volume of live chat?
Whatever your goal, it would be useful to quantify the number. How many sales and how many visitors would you consider a win?
If you have an existing website, what quantities of visitors/sales are you achieving and what do you think are the current barriers to higher volume?
Let your website designer know if you have any secondary objectives, such as building a mailing list or attracting investors.
3. Decide the visitor journey
Devising the visitor journey will be the role of your web designer. However, letting him/her know what you want visitors to do on your website is vital. If visitors are segmented into different groups (press, investors, repeat customers versus new customers etc.,) how different should their journey be? Will each group have a different call to action? If so, what should that call to action be? These decisions can be loose at the briefing stage. Your website designer may propose a better way to engage and convert visitors than you initially envisaged.
4. Communicate your style and website preferences
At The Web Designer Group, one of our key questions to clients is which websites they admire and which competitors they think are getting it right. This is fundamental. A web designer needs to know the competition to beat.
Alternatively, if there are sites that you strongly dislike and functions on a competitor’s website that you hate, communicate those to your designer too.
6. What should the website do and contain?
This could be as simple as deciding you want 6 pages and telling your designer their names and function. Or it could be an e-commerce store with thousands of products, hundreds of categories and sophisticated search filters.
Does the site need to integrate with any other apps or platforms? Are there any legal requirements the site should conform to? Does the site require mandatory pages?
Don’t drill down into too much detail here. Your designer can explore this further once budget and expectations are known.
7. What’s your timescale?
Do you have a deadline for the site to be finished? Will the designer be waiting for content or images from you?
8. What’s the budget?
Although this is towards the bottom of our list, in many ways budget naturally arises earlier in the brief when you detail the scope of what the website should do and contain. Being realistic on how far your budget will stretch and being up front with your designer is essential to a successful website. There could have been other options that the designer could offer if your budget is lower or higher than communicated.
It’s always wise to keep a little contingency for any extras that may arise during the design process. Sometimes you don’t realise there are features that you want until the project is underway.
That’s it! The process may sound detailed, but as you know your business and goals, it will be surprisingly easy to get this down in list form for your designer. During the process, keep track of whether your goals are being met and keep the dialogue open with your designer. Everybody in the process wants the website to be a success.
At The Web Designer Group, we offer bespoke website maintenance services once the creative design process is finished. We’re still here to support you throughout your company’s growth as your online presence increases. Web designing is our passion. We look forward to taking the journey with you.
When planning your content strategy, a good place to start is to ask which keywords will bring traffic to the website. This is an important part of the SEO process (Search Engine Optimisation). Having content which attracts visitors is a clever investment of your time. Yes, it takes time to craft quality content, but once you do, you’ll receive visitors for years to come. Without any cost. The same can’t be said of paid advertising. Not only that, but your visitors are likely to be further down the sales tunnel because they actively searched for the products or services you provide, as opposed to clicking on a text or display advert on impulse.
How to approach blog writing
Of course you could pay a content agency to produce articles and you can simply guide them on preferred article topics. A professional would create content that is engaging and optimised for search with keywords in the best places, while keeping the article natural and reader-focused. At The Web Designer Group, we offer marketing services that include content creation for our website design clients.
However, if you’re just starting out and need to keep costs low initially, then don’t despair – writing your own content could be a positive step. Nobody knows your industry, products or services as well as you do. It will give you the opportunity to develop your true ‘brand voice’. Brand voice is the tone and messaging that makes your company unique. It’s the difference between connecting with customers on an emotional level, rather than on a transactional level. How you speak to your customers comes across in every sentence. Are you a friendly ‘mom and pop’ business or a slick corporate entity? Which values influence the business or are reflected in your story for setting it up? Do you want to change the world, your neighbourhood, or how things are done in your sector? In which case your mission will naturally come through as a result of your passion for what you do.
Content with value
The easiest way to start your content strategy is to decide what your customers most want to know. What will amuse them or make their lives easier? The next step is to look at the holiday calendar. Are there milestones throughout the year that should be referenced in your content? If your customers belong to a professional organisation, are there events and training sessions that you can tap into?
Promoting your content
Once you have a draft you are happy with, leave it overnight and check it for spelling and grammar with fresh eyes the next day. You’ll be amazed at what you missed! Now you are ready to share.
Post a link to your new blog article on social media channels. Don’t forget to include a relevant image. Your URL may be too long to include in social media posts, so consider using a URL shortener tool, such as bitly.
Send a link out by email. Either in a newsletter template or as a link in the body of a standard email.
If your article is an expert piece, consider adding a permanent link to it below your email signature.
There are other ways to share your content once you dig deeper into social and digital marketing. Take advantage of our social media package – available to all our web design clients. Let us help grow your business with content that attracts traffic and converts to sales. Call the UK Best Web Design Agency on 0800 905 5999 for free website design quote.
If you are reading this blog, then you are interested in getting web site designed like a professional. You may be feeling overwhelmed since you already know the tons of things that go into launching a professional business website, other than the coding itself.
Well, you are in luck!!!
We will cover the simple ways to build a website like pro without all the hassles. The code that goes into building a website is just one of the many crucial factors.
This simple yet comprehensive blog will go through some of the crucial aspects of building a professionally designed website such as the following:
#1 Define A Purpose & Strategy for Your Website
#2 Research the Latest Web Site Design Trends
#3 Choose A Reliable Platform
#4 Select a Theme
#5 Select Your Brand Style
#6 Pay Attention to SEO Content
#7 Regularly Review, Analyse & Reinforce Website
Let’s Get Started with The Secret Formula of Getting A Web Site Designed Like A Professional!
#1 Define A Purpose & Strategy for Your Website
Before you begin considering your options to build a website for a product or service, it is important to define its purpose.
Is it a web site designed for professional, business or personal reasons?
What defines success for your website? How do you plan on achieving your goals?
These are things which are not just about the industry you are working in or the SEO or content strategy, but think in terms of Unique Selling Points or USPs. Website visitors are not aliens, they are people just like you and me. They are not easily fooled, and they are looking for a potential solution whether a product, a service or just a good time.
In order for website to work, you must know what this web site is designed for.
Is it selling something?
How is it selling it?
Is it providing information?
Is the most important information being made easily available to visitors?
Alright, take it easy!
Not trying to get you all riled up here. But regardless of how simple of a start this may be, it is important to get this sorted in the beginning.
Once you have a clear purpose to build a website, you will see that the other solutions will fall into place one after the other. The looks, functionality, etc. are all things which will be easier to determine with a set purpose and how you want to achieve it.
One of the most important strategic points to build a website is the landing page. Your landing page or the home page is what your visitors see as soon as they visit your website. In the visible area of the first glimpse of your website, a point should be made.
The visitor must be able to make a decision about your business just by viewing that particular area. So, you must use graphics, images, content, etc. in a minimalistic way to get your point across.
In visiting our website, you immediately understand that it is a company which offers web site design services. The social media integration connects to users who are more comfortable in conducting business using Facebook, twitter, etc.
There is an easy to spot sales number and email. An attention-grabbing title which states the price of the service and the region. The Call to Action button shows that users can get a quote with a simple click.
As a result, website visitors are immediately able to establish an identity for the business in their minds. Whether they know it or not, their minds are already making decisions about the potentials of the business web site designed to attract them.
Have you thought of www address or the domain name for your new website yet?
Web design is a quickly evolving industry. There are more and more trends recognised by the hour. In terms of trends, it is important to remember that something that is trending will not necessary be the best solution for you.
So, while keeping up to date with the latest trends of web site designed by popular companies, do not disregard everything else. You can find a design which is perfect for you and not a trend. But then, the added responsibility is to make it relevant to current trends for maximum success.
Almost half of all visitors consider the design of website to be a decision-making factor. So, it is already proven to be a crucial aspect for any business in any industry.
It is also notable to understand that there are 2 ways to go about with the latest trends. If you want to go with the flow of current trends as your strategy then you simply follow the trends in design. But if your strategy is to go against the flow and disrupt the audience in noticing your business, then you must go against the trends.
A simple trend in design is the fact that if you are going for a corporate look, you want to use some shade of blue in your website. But if you are going for a start-up look, then you want to use a bright, vibrant colour.
If you are not bothered about social media, the likes, the shares and the comments, then you should start immediately. Every interaction, no matter how small or even if it is positive or negative, every interaction is valuable.
Facebook for example, offers users a very interactive and intimate experience to its users through animated like, love, reacts, etc. These animations add an extra flair or a bit of personality for Facebook to its users.
Similarly, consider making your website more interactive with even the smallest of things so that people are clicking, sharing, commenting, talking or even just thinking about it. As a result, the many different forms of creative design aspects such as clicking, hovering, scrolling etc. will help your visitors to connect with your website.
Automated chats or the modern day chatbots are no longer just a cool touch to a website. It is actually a quite effective sales assistant which is capable of deriving sales for your website. It is no longer a gimmick from back in the day.
Your users are able to get their initial queries and problems answered through a chatbot which is both time efficient and effective. When the client is ready for a money-making move, they will be aware of the basic matters.
Yes, chatbots are not quite perfect, but they sure are improving everyday based on technological advances and we will be getting more and more effective chatbot solutions in the near future.
Brutalism is a design idea derived from the French word ‘brut’ which means raw. So, consider this a very bold and striking design which makes your audience look twice. This approach to web design is called to be disruptive. The audience is taken back by a bold design move allowing you to be noticed.
For example, an entire page with just one word or a web page with just an image. The audience will almost always spend more time on the web page to almost solve the puzzle of the web site designed in such a way.
When you are looking to build a website, you must consider the building blocks. Many of us make the mistake of saying let the experts handle the technical things and avoid involvement in this department. While the statement is true – yes, let the experts take care of technical jargon, but this is basic!
Imagine you are booking flights for a family vacation. You will research the best airlines in terms of traveling with family, timely departures and arrivals, etc. You don’t have to find out if the pilot has a license! Now think about it, you don’t have to know how to use a platform to build a website, but you can surely pick a platform which is reputed, trusted and reliable.
Yes, there are a lot of DIY tools to build a website but as you will find the customer reviews from them, they are not the most flexible. There are many options and various qualities of services on offer. But you will find the best option or the experts’ recommended option to be a select few.
WordPress is currently the world’s most popular, reliable and open source platform. In terms of freedom, you have all the control you need on WordPress. Anything or everything you would want is achievable on the WordPress platform using themes, plugins, etc.
It doesn’t make it easy, so you will need a proper web developer to work on your website. However, why build it on DIY platform which is prone to be troublesome in the future, when you can build a website for the future using WordPress.
So, yes stress that when you are looking for a developer or web design agency to build a web site designed like pro for you, that you stress the importance of building it using WordPress. You will save yourself a lot of trouble by doing so.
Many people refrain from using a theme to build a website. While others rely heavily on them. Neither is right, we have found from our years of experience in designing and developing website in the UK that a balance is needed between the two.
If you have a clear idea of how you want your web site designed as, then you can convey that to the person or agency designing it. But there is always the possibility that you are unable to put to words or picture what you want exactly. In this case, browsing many themes will allow you to specifically point out things and say that you want THAT to be like THIS and THIS to be like THAT.
Also, imagine that you do not have any idea of how you want your website to look. Instead of pressuring the designer to present something that you may love or hate, you can opt to select a theme. By browsing through the many themes, you may even end up liking something which is exactly how you imagined your website to be.
A common misconception about themes is that they are predesigned websites. That is not entirely true. While many premium themes are actually completely predesigned websites which are fully functional but they also come at a much higher price.
Think of a theme like the basic structure of a house. Before you can say what colour the walls and carpets should be, you get a structure ready and then customise it as per your needs.
Similarly, using a theme you will be able to get the initial look and feel of your website and then all the hard coding will go into the specific development of your required features.
So, by selecting a theme you are not getting a pre-built basic website. Rather, you are selecting the frame of your website to build up from. Of course, being the dynamic platform that WordPress is, you will be able to completely change any and all aspects of design of a theme to suit your needs.
This is when you select a style or design for your website. How it should look? The font style, colour scheme, etc. This is your brand style, your overall brand identity.
One of the first things to settle upon is your colour scheme. Whether you need to design the logo, the website or the business card. You must first select a colour scheme for your website. The primary and secondary colours, along with others to form the complete colour scheme for your new website.
Colours, believe it or not, is a huge aspect of design so much so that industries invest a lot of time, effort and money on understanding audience psychology, moods etc. as a result, it is important that you give it some thought.
What feel should visitors get when visiting your website? Should they be looking at calm, soothing, standard colours, or vibrant, lively colours?
You would want to select at least one or two dominant colours, followed by some secondary colours. Consider things like how your logo should look on white background, dark background, etc.
The next design aspect that you must focus on is the Font Style. Remember, when scrolling through your website, the thing that most of your visitors or audience will focus on is what you are saying on it. So, how it is written is a massive factor.
You must, first of all, consider legibility. Whatever colour of font or style you are using, is it easy to read for audiences is the very first question to answer. Do you want to entice them with fancy writing styles or show professionalism with standard font style?
While it is important to choose a font – which is easy to read, you must also pay attention to your target audience, your product or service type. It’s important to choose a font that is readable, versatile, and on-brand.
This is when you set in stone some thumb rules like how big the headings should be, what colour they should be, the size of the normal body text or the fine print size on your footer, etc.
As a result, you will be creating a font style guide which must be maintained throughout every page of your website. The least professional thing you could possibly do is have a different font style in each page and inconsistency in font size.
The images used on your website or the visual content is also crucial. This is not limited to images, since more and more video content is gaining popularity.
It is not about just slapping on every beautiful image you find on your website in the highest resolution. You must not forget that having tons of large image or video files on your website will significantly increase its loading time. This is an absolutely unwanted user experience.
Select images, videos and other multimedia content which are meaningful to your product, service, business sector or target audience. The right balance between written and visual content will make your website simplistic, clean and attractive in design.
So, now that you have all the aspects of website design covered, it is crucial that you start paying attention to Google. Yes, that’s right!
If you want Google to pay attention to you by giving your website a better ranking, then you too should be paying attention to the likes and dislikes of Google. Hence, Search Engine Optimisation or better known as SEO.
Content is anything and everything that is one your website, more specifically it is on-site content which falls under on-site SEO.
In terms of being noticed by Google (which is the major search engine, although depending on your target you could target others like Bing, Yahoo, etc.) your website must do 2 key things, Positioning & Optimisation.
Let’s learn a little bit more about the important of SEO positioning and SEO optimisation for getting a website designed like a professional:
This is not too complicated to understand, in fact it is simple!
Research is key, so you must research how your target audience likes their websites. So, do they like to read more or see more images, or enjoy more videos. Depending on this, you need to create relevant content and position them accordingly on your website.
Content whether it is text, image or videos, should be easy to find. If you have text on your website – they should be easy to read. If you have images on your web site design – they must be high quality and attractive. If you have videos incorporated into the web design – they must be high quality, fast loading and must have good audio and video sync.
A Neilson study shows that most online readers follow a “F” pattern when reading information.
This is why things like the menu, navigation bar, etc are almost always found in the top of the website, psychologically people consider that of importance.
These research findings must be utilised properly to get results that you desire. So, you are able to show your target audience the information that you think is important for them to see.
Now, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO for short) is much more than what you think of it!
It is common to find many people who either love or hate SEO. But regardless, they are both unaware of the depths of SEO needed to build a website. Most people will think of it as unnecessary and rely on ads while others will leave it until the website is fully ready.
Think of SEO in a difference scenario:
You are baking a cake. You want to make sure it looks good and tastes. Not just one or the other. SEO is like the sugar in the ingredient. So, saying that you will first make it look good and then make sure it tastes right, doesn’t make sense. In order for both your cake to look good and taste good certain things must be done ahead of time.
SEO is similar to this when making your website look good. Yes, for the most part SEO doesn’t have anything to do with how your website looks. But if you do not follow the SEO guidelines while getting your website designed, then you will be harming it regardless of how good it looks on the outside or the front end.
So, let’s cover the absolute SEO basics that you must ensure while getting your new web site designed:
The metadata is simply your page title and description. In web design, every web page is designed and given individual care. Similarly, each web page design must have its meta title and meta description completed with your target keywords.
While you have a normal title for your visitors or readers, the meta title and description is for Google.
– title of web page
– description of web page content
The importance of meta data is not limited to search engines like Google, which is why you should make sure that they are written in a way that it can attract your target visitors as well.
Image Alt Text
When using images on your website, your users are able to “see” them. How do you make Google “see” your images? The Alt Text is how Google is able to understand the relevance of an image to your website.
So, when you build a website design all the images that are being used on for getting the website designed must have an alt text filled out. This way, all those images are not just a waste of space rather search engines value them for what they are.
The Alt text will never be visible on your website, so it doesn’t have to be formatted nicely for your readers, just make sure that it is present for every image on your website.
We have covered how you need high resolution images, which are attractive incorporated when you build a website. But having a lot of large files like images and videos can significantly slow down your website. This is a huge SEO red flag!
So, what can you do so that your visitors are not clicking on your web site and then immediately going away when your web page design takes too long to load?
Use one of the many image compression tools available for free online to compress images and even videos to ensure that your website loading speed does not fall below par.
Now, I know that you must have already heard about this, even if you are unaware of everything else, we have spoken about in this blog. In 2019, it is as big as it gets in SEO.
Everyone is on a smart device whether it is a phone, tablet, portable PC etc. So, when you build a website, you cannot simply focus on how it will look on a desktop or laptop.
Rather, you should get your website designed in such a way that it is fully functional and beautiful across all mobile devices of varying shapes and sizes.
So, make sure that your website designer or web design agency is building a mobile responsive design for your new website.
#7 Regularly Review, Analyse & Reinforce Your Website
At this point, you have done the following things:
– Set your website’s purpose
– Researched latest web design trends
– Selected a reliable platform – WordPress
– Decided on your brand identity (colours scheme, font style, brand theme)
– Optimised your web site design (SEO)
You are ready to go LIVE with your new web site design!
The next step is maintenance of your new website – this means you regularly look at its performance, analyse your findings and implement improvements for better results.
This can mean a simple thing like taking feedback from friends, family and colleagues. Some of the most common things that you want to check are the following:
Make sure all your links available on the website are working
All your content is easy to find and read
It is easy to go back to your homepage or your contact us page
Your website is looking good & working well on desktops, phones, tablets, etc.
You loading speed in between 5-7 seconds
You now have an incredible website designed like a professional which is working wonders! Job done, now you can relax.
Well… not really!
The hard work is actually just beginning. Because now you must make sure that your website is performing consistently. Or else, you won’t get visitors and without visitors, you have no potential money-making customers.
You have to keep working and improving, and if you are not in charge of your website you better make sure that your web designer or web designing agency is working hard regularly!
You should take advantage of tools such as Google Analytics for tracking the performance of your website.
The truth is, getting a professionally website designed is never a job which gets truly done. While you may relax and look at the beauty of your new website designed like your dreams, your completion will overtake you on the Google’s SERP.
You’re now armed with the essentials for getting a web site designed like a pro without costing you an arm and a leg. Let’s quickly review the steps to take to build a website.
Define A Purpose & Strategy for Your Website
Research the Latest Web Site Design Trends
Choose A Reliable Platform like WordPress
Select a Theme & Build Upwards
Select Your Brand Style & Implement It
Pay Attention to SEO & Optimised Content
Regularly Review, Analyse & Reinforce Your Website
Hurry up and like, share or comment on this blog, or better yet, bookmark it now so that you can come back to it when you are ready to build a website like a professional with a minimal budget.
Remember: professional doesn’t always mean expensive!
Be aware of what the experts are recommending and be prepared to learn more about a thing instead of avoiding it. To get help from an expert, it will help if you know the basics to not just understand what’s going on but also, to keep a check to make sure things are going the right way.
Oh, and if you want us to answer a specific question, or cover a certain topic in detail, let us know in the comments and we will get back to you.
Truth be told, design is never complete – as a designer you will continue to trial new things and even old things in the pursuit of the perfect design which doesn’t exist. Because design is dynamic and the demand is never consistent.
You must always be ready to change with changing trends to continue to be relevant with your design. This doesn’t mean never get out of the maintenance mode in your website, rather it means that always be open to changes.
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A Responsive Web Site Design is a Web Site Design which automatically adapts to the screen size the website is viewed on. This provides potential website visitors with the best user experience. With almost a quarter of UK owning at least one smart device, having a responsive web site design is a must. However, that being said, web design companies are aware of the growing market and consequently, sometimes charge an extra fee for features like responsive web site design.
Below we explain exactly how much does a responsive web site design cost in 2019 and what options are available to you:
01 | Web Site Design Cost Summary
02 | Different Web Site Design Cost Ranges
03 | Custom Functionality Web Site Design Cost Ranges
04 | Content & Graphics Web Site Design Cost Ranges
05 | Hosting Web Site Design Cost Ranges
01 | Web Site Design Cost Summary
Web Site Design Cost In 2019 ranges from £0 – £5000+ depending on the following factors:
How you have the Web Site Designed:
Whether you design it yourself
Whether you use a freelance web designer
Whether you have it built overseas
Whether you use a Web Design Agency
The type of Web Site Design you require
A simple brochure web site design
Business web site design
An e-Commerce web site design
Custom web site design
Accepting Payments Online
Custom Contact Forms
Content & Graphics
Whether you would like content professionally written for your web site design
Whether you would like to use professional stock photos for your web site design
Whether you already have a logo for your web site design
Whether you would like a custom design for your web site design
Whether you would like 2 designs; 1 for larger screens and 1 for a small screen size
Whether you would like shared hosting or dedicated hosting
Whether you would like your web site design hosted in the UK
Whether you would like an individual IP address for your web site design
Whether you would like your web site design optimised for top level security
Whether your website is in a specific industry which is targeted by hackers
Whether you want to limit what countries your web site design is available to
SEO – Search Engine Optimisation
Whether you would like your on-site web site design optimised for SEO.
Whether you would like an off-site SEO campaign as part of the package
Maintenance & Support
Whether you are looking for an on-going support and maintenance package
Whether your more hands on and prefer to maintain a website yourself
How you have the Web Site Designed:
Web Site Design
Building Your Own Web Site Design
£8.50 per month
Overseas / Offshore Web Site Design
£150 – £400 one off cost
Freelancer Web Site Design
Sole Traders & Small Businesses
£200 – 600 one off cost
Web Design Agency Web Site Design
Sole Traders & Small To Medium Size Businesses
Creating a web site design yourself is very tempting with a price point starting at nothing. However, if you have never created a web site design before, the end result of your web site will sometimes display that. If the result is poor this could have a big impact on your business, as your web site design is sometimes the first port of call when researching about your company.
There are many free web site builder tools and companies out there and their marketing adverts make it look so simple. Yet, 27% of new web site designs built by The Web Designer Group are from people who have previously attempted to build their own web site design using a free web site builder.
The other thing to consider when thinking about creating your own web site is the fact that your web site is being built using templates and can ultimately leave your website look very similar to other websites out there. Using a website builder where you drag and drop elements to build your site may look and sound easy, however on average people take between 2 – 4 months to build their own website design before it can go live. That being said most reputable web design agencies will be able to design and build you a bespoke web site design within 2 weeks.
Another downfall of creating your own web site design is your web site will not be future proofed, as you will only be able to add, change or edit using the web site builder of the company you are using. This can sometimes restrict your companies’ web site offering and limit your conversions.
One final question you should consider when looking to build your own web site design, is how do these companies who offer a free web site builder make money?
The answer is usually in the latter… As soon as you want to start adding simple functions such as videos, your own domain etc, you will be hit with additional fees.
However, if you still want to have a go at building your own web site design, we would recommend WIX, as they have the easiest web site builder.
Using a freelance web designer to have your web site design created, can be cost-effective. It may take a while to find a descent freelance web designer through research. But you will receive a personal touch with more of a personalised web designing service. Generally freelance web designers charge considerably less than web design agencies. Freelance web designers charge between £35 – £80 per hour.
As the cost may be lower than a web design agency, you maybe be tempted, however you are limited to what the freelance web designer can offer you; this can be factors such as:
A certain type of CMS – (Content Management System) As the freelance web designer may only have experience in designing websites using a certain type of CMS.
Hosting – As freelance web designers generally have a small number of clients, they normally provide you with an off the self-hosting package. This can sometimes reduce the speed of your web site design due to shared hosting or even worse have your web site design blacklisted. The reason being, shared hosting does exactly what it says on the tin, you share the server where your web site design is hosted and if another web site is penalised and using the same IP address as yours, it can also affect your web site designs rankings.
Support – As you are dealing with 1 person sometimes the aftercare / support can be slow or unresponsive. Leaving your business web site design in the lurch.
Using an offshore / overseas web design company can cost between a freelance web designer and building your website option. Although thought to be the second cheapest option in having your web site design created, can also be extremely tricky. Ever heard of the saying, if something is too good to be true, then it probably isn’t true?
That’s often the case when using an offshore / overseas web design company due to the following factors:
Reliability – Sometimes offshore / overseas web design companies are very difficult to get a hold of.
Fraud – As the internet has smashed through new ways of sending monies, sometimes its very easy for an offshore company to ask you to send monies in advance via PayPal and then you never hear from them again.
Language barrier – Although a lot of oversees web companies speak English, it is very poor. So, when it comes to explaining your vision, this becomes quite difficult.
Time difference – You may need a change to your web site design at a specific design, however due to time difference sometimes this can’t happen until they are working.
An obvious yet the most expensive choice, is generally using a Web Design Agency to have your web site design built by. Web Design Agencies in the UK are generally very good at what they do.
The main difference between choosing the right and wrong Web Design Agency is factors such as:
What is included in the web site design package?
What isn’t included in the web design package and how much does it cost in the future?
Is web site hosting included, if so where is the web site hosted?
Is after care / web site design provided?
Who owns the web site copyright?
Do you get a free web site domain?
Are there any monthly fees?
Will you have a dedicated account manager?
When looking into web design agencies it’s important to understand exactly what your getting for your money, and that’s why we have written a complete guide on what to look out for when dealing with a Web Design Agency here.
Individuals, Self-Employed, Small Businesses, Online Business Card
£150 – £600
Business Web Site Design
New Start Up Businesses, Small Businesses, Freelancers
£400 – £1200
eCommerce Web Site Design
Any Business Looking To Launch An Online Shop
£1200 – £3500
Custom Web Site Design
Businesses looking for custom functionality
A simple brochure web site design also known as a basic web site design, is generally a web site design with up to 5 website pages. Generally, brochure web site designs are made up of:
Home Web Page
About Us Web Page
Services Web Page
Gallery Web Page
Contact Us Web Page
A brochure style web site design is perfect for getting your business online. Essentially think of it as your online business card. Great option when you are on a budget, however the web site is limited to the information you can display about your company.
A business web site design is more than just a basic brochure style website. It provides you with the opportunity to display detailed information about your products and services. Most business web site designs also come with modern web design features like:
Social Media integration
Google My Business integration
Content Management System
Custom call to action
Essentially a business web site design is tailored to your business, and more importantly designed around your vision. With a content management system, it gives you control over the website; allowing you to update your website as and when you choose to.
eCommerce web site design is one the fastest growing web site design types. The reason being is, it gives you the ability to start selling products and services immediately without the cost and overheads of opening a physical shop / outlet. You will generally find the cost of an eCommerce web site design is based on the following factors:
Number of products / services you which to advertise
Whether you require products to have the ability to be variable – such as colours etc
Whether you would like a specific payment gateway integrated
Although eCommerce web site design is extremely popular, it’s also well known for web site owners to be hit for hidden fees for features like:
SSL Security fees
Additional Hosting fees
Additional Maintenance fees
The truth be told is that eCommerce web design is very similar to any other web site design. If coded to a good standard should not incur hidden fees, neither should it matter whether you offer 1 product / service or 1 million products / services.
Custom web site design is normally the route if you have a custom idea, or generally you need a web site design which hasn’t been done before. Custom functionality normally entails custom database and plugin work. Creating a web site design with custom functionality can be time consuming and costly if you don’t choose the right web design company. The first step is to write down exactly your vision, what custom functionality you would like and how you would see the website working.
The web design agency should then provide you with the following:
Scope of work
Solution to any custom functionality you would like and how it would work
Any on-going costs
Be careful and be sure to have everything in writing form the web design agency, as the sometimes you can be overwhelmed by the technical jargon. If you are unsure about an aspect of the quote, as them web design agency to explain it again for you.
03 | Custom Functionality Web Site Design Cost Ranges
Web Site Designs with custom functionality are generally quoted for on a feature required basis. Depending on the feature prices will vary, however below we will take a look at the most popular features in the web design industry:
Accepting Credit / Debit Card Payments
£99 – £500
Photo / Video Gallery
£45 – £180
£600 – £1000
Custom Contact Forms
£45 – £120
£95 – £350
Accepting card payments online is a great way to enhance your web site design and make it easier for your customers to pay you. There are several merchant providers and payment gateways which can be integrated into your web site design.
Depending on which payment provider you choose, will depend upon how much work is involved in coding it into your web site design. If you opt to go for a popular payment processor like PayPal or Stripe then you will be looking at the lower end of the price range, the reason being UK Web Designers are used to coding the popular ones.
We should mention that the popular payment providers also have great support and documentation for web developers looking to integrate their payment service.
A photo or video gallery can transform your web site design into an online portfolio.
A great feature to show examples of work you have done in the past. Galleries can be designed to suit your business, with box standard galleries to more complex galleries like masonic grids and hover effects. For a simple standard photo gallery, you should be looking at under £50. Where as if you wanted a video gallery the price may increase depending on how you host the video, and what visual effect you want on the gallery.
[rt_fancy_text_box_style fancy_textbox_title=”Photo Gallery” fancy_textbox_subtitle=”Just £45″ fancy_textbox_content=”We will set up a dedicated photo gallery for you for just £45. You can include any images you want and upload new ones once the system is in place.” fancy_textbox_image=”64599″ fancy_textbox_link=”url:https%3A%2F%2Fthewebdesignergroup.co.uk%2Fbusiness-services%2Fphoto-gallery%2F|title:Website%20Page%20Content%20Writing|target:%20_blank|” fancy_textbox_color=”#1e73be”]
Membership areas are perfect for a web site design which is trying to create its own community. Whether your looking to offer exclusive content, offers or even downloads, a membership area is the feature that can achieve this with ease. For a simple membership area to display exclusive content, you would be looking at around £600. However, if you’re looking for a more complex membership area, the price will increase dependant upon what your requirements are.
If you offer a number of different services, having a custom contact form / multiple contact forms is a great way to find out exactly what service the customer is looking for. If you simply need a contact form with custom fields, that will cost you around £45 to be coded. However, if you’re looking for something more complex where as if a customer enters certain information a calculation is done in the background before displaying the result, this will cost you just over £100 to be coded by UK Web Designers.
API is way that web site servers can talk to each other. As an example, if you wanted to created a car web site design, you may want to pull in the car model etc., to manually add every car and keep it up to date would be a very time consuming and long task.
DVLA may be able to provide you with an API, where a customer can enter a number plate on your website and in simple terms: your web site server would talk to DVLA’s web site server and pull the information for you. API’s are a great tool depending on the company who is providing you with the API, the reason being is that every API is coded differently and as such needs to be coding for your web site design individually.
Depending on the API documentation and how much coding and testing is required, you would be looking at a minimum cost of around £500. We would recommend you setup a call between your website developer and your API provider to ascertain a full quote before going ahead with any API integration.
If your web site design targets different languages and countries, it’s absolute must that your website is geared up with website translation. Website translation can be coded to any website for a very small fee if you choose to use a free translation service such as Google Translate.
However, if you choose for each page to be manually translated for each language the cost will be a lot higher. Another factor in the cost will be how many languages you want your website translated for.
[rt_fancy_text_box_style fancy_textbox_title=”Website Translation” fancy_textbox_subtitle=”Just £95″ fancy_textbox_content=”You can purchase our website translation add-on which will increase your customer base across different cultures and nationalities.” fancy_textbox_image=”64600″ fancy_textbox_link=”url:https%3A%2F%2Fthewebdesignergroup.co.uk%2Fbusiness-services%2Fwebsite-translation%2F|title:Website%20Page%20Content%20Writing|target:%20_blank|” fancy_textbox_color=”#1e73be”]
04 | Content & Graphics Web Site Design Cost Ranges
While you are planning your web site design, do not make the mistake of copying all the text from another website, as this is frowned up by Google; click here to find out more about duplicate content.
When a customer visits your website the content (text) needs to read professionally well and be engaging. If you don’t have any content or are struggling to write content, then you can have your website pages professionally written for around £45 per page.
Most web design agencies have a preferred supplier of high quality royalty free stock photos, you can expect to pay around £35 per 10 images, however if you would like stock videos there maybe additional costs involved. Also depending on what resolution of the images / video would like will also play a factor in the price.
If your business doesn’t have a business logo yet, you may incur an additional fee of around £100-£500 depending on the complexity and revisions of your logo design.
However most reputable web design agencies provide a free logo design when your order a web site design with them. When having a new logo designed, please ensure all file types are provided such as high resolution etc, as some web companies charge extra for high resolution versions of the final logo.
Bespoke Web Designs are tailored by web designers to suit a business needs, by customising the templates look, feel and colours. However if you would like a graphic designer to draw you a completely custom web design, you can expect to pay between £500-£2000 for the design, and then the web design agency may also charge you an additional fee to transform the graphic designers designs into a web coded page.
Having a responsive web site design (mobile friendly) is so important and is pretty standard practise now for a web site design to be responsive. However, if you would like a dedicated custom responsive web site design (mobile site) on top of your normal web site design you can expect to pay between £500-£1000, as it is essentially like having another web site designed.
05 | Hosting Web Site Design Cost Ranges
Web site design hosting cost changes depending on the following factors:
The type of web site design hosting you require
Shared hosting: Perfect if you’re just starting out or if your web site design is expecting a small amount of website visitors. Shared hosting prices start from £3.99 per month.
Dedicated hosting; Perfect if your planning a large website or big eCommerce web site design. Dedicated hosting prices start from around £180 per month, however if your going to manage it yourself, be sure to choose a dedicated managed server option. Otherwise you will need to look after the dedicated server updated and security.
VPS hosting; Perfect for a website looking to go big but its not quite grown to justify the cost of dedicated server just yet. A VPS is where you get more storage, processing and memory resources than a shared hosting option. VPS hosting starts from around £70 per month.
Where your web site design is hosted
UK – if you want your website hosted in the UK, expect to pay a premium as UK data centres are industry leading and some of the best in the world.
Oversees – you can expect to pay a lower price if you choose to host your web site design outside the UK. The generally rule is to try and host your web site design in the country your business mainly does business.
Individual IP addresses
Individual IP addresses come at a premium as it basically means no one else shares that website IP address. The advantage of having your own IP address is for SEO reasons it keeps you separate from anyone else on that server.
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Hopefully, this blog was able to better inform you about the many different ways to get a web site designed and developed in 2019. We will follow up with more, so keep checking for the next article on the ins and outs of web site design in UK.
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Are you an entrepreneur or a business owner looking to create a website for your business?
Most business owners in our current digital age either already have a business website or are ready to create one. If not, then they are most definitely holding their company back by not giving it the soil it needs to grow.
Today, businesses of every size are global businesses!
How? You may ask.
The answer is simple – online presence!
No matter the size, shape or location of your business, the competition is only a Google search away.
Therefore, we have created this complete guide to building a professional business website to blow away your competitors by an amazing web design.
While building and owning a business website may not be a difficult task, the return on investment can vary widely. There are many common mistakes which often stop businesses from successfully generating substantial sales.
In this website design guide, we will cover some of the most essential aspects of the design process. Don’t worry, we won’t bore you with technical jargon, we just want to give you the tips to help your business succeed.
As a business owner, you will know the importance of every little detail and how every sale, no matter how little, is crucial to the success of your business.
We will cover all the steps (the ifs, the buts and the whys) of web design in this guide, including:
Why is your website design so important?
What are some of the elements which are essential?
Why things like the layout of the website and mobile friendliness are important?
The most crucial question is, how do you actually choose a web designer or an agency to get the job done?
And of course, how can you maximise your sales?
Not only will these steps be covered thoroughly, but we will also look at the general workflow tips to ensure how you can get your business website design right.
If done right, you will maximise your business by creating a professional business website!
Why website design is important for businesses
The main reason we are making this guide is so you can understand what goes into the website design process and why it is important to have a website that looks good for your business.
As a complete website design guide, we will explore in depth-questions and the appropriate answers to them, especially for entrepreneurs and small businesses.
So, without further ado, we’re going to delve deep into why website design is important for businesses.
Reflect Brand Identity
Website design is key to the establishment of your brand identity!
Once that is established, it must be reflected on all other aspects of your business. So, just like a traditional store, no matter what you are selling, a product or a service, you must display it to attract customers.
Your website will represent you and your business online. It must reflect your brand’s identity, what it stands for, what it provides to its customers and all the other USPs of your business.
With this element of web design, you will attract visitors who are specifically looking for your services and convert them to customers.
Improve Customer Experience
The next reason why website design is important for your business is that it will improve your customer experience.
You want to make sure that your site isn’t chaotic, cluttered or confusing, otherwise visitors might back out and click the next available site. This backing out is not just a lost customer for you, but it also hurts the rating of your website by Google.
Google is like Santa for online businesses, you must always be on its nice list, or else you miss out on all wonderful the gifts!
You don’t want your visitors to bounce off your website, since no business can stand to lose out on potential customers. Read all about the importance of Bounce Rate from Neil Patel.
With an effective web design, your visitors will get the grand experience they expect and they will become your valued customers.
Design Elements of a Good Business Website
There are many things you need to consider when incorporating a good website design. Mostly because your website will be a custom website which will differ from others and might even have different design elements to it depending on the CMS your website is built in.
However, we would always recommend WordPress as it is the simplest for your potential customers to understand and the layout is rather simple as well.
Take a look at some of the most important elements of a good website design:
Create your own branding colour
One of the most important elements of a good website design is your branding recognition. You will want to design your website with a certain array of colours that match your brand and logo design.
A good web designer will recognise this and implement your specific colours throughout your website.
With an in-depth knowledge of web development, the designer will be able to implement this correctly. These design elements are a must throughout your website if you want it to effectively come across as a professional web site.
If you have a logo for your business that’s branded on any of your promotional material, be it leaflets, business cards etc., you want to apply the same style and colour scheme to your website design.
For example, our custom website design has a navy-blue logo with a white background, so we’ve implemented blue and white throughout the site:
This reminds the customer whose website they’re on, as they scroll through your home page and related pages. It also makes it easy for us to highlight our call to action buttons as you can use a contrasting colour, in this case green, to make them pop.
You can use this same tactic to maintain consistency across your pages as it’s quite jarring to see various background and content colours on each page.
You also want to make sure you use the same format, style and typeface guidelines for all your pages to avoid the same jarring presentation.
Minimising distractions is key to keeping people on your website and making the whole process as streamlined as possible.
Utilise the white space
One important thing to notice is the amount of “white space” we have around our primary question and call to action. Any open space on a website is known as “white space” which, contrary to its name, can be any colour, and is used to frame the content you want to draw the visitor’s eye to.
You can see another example of this on our local SEO page:
Your eye is drawn to each individual segment and you can tell they are separate, thanks to the white space between them. Also, all the content is channelled down the middle effectively using the white space.
Proper use of calls to action
Getting those potential customers towards your website is great, but what if you can turn them into leads and actual customers. This is where your “Call to Action” comes in to play, it could be something like “click here,” “buy now,” or even “visit our website.”
You are inviting your visitors to do something and with persuasive & strategic design, they will do what you want them to do!
These are great ways to generate customers because, when a customer reads a little bit of your content and is then ready to make a purchase, the button is right there. So, they don’t have to waste time trying to find it.
Not only that, but it also helps drive traffic throughout your website.
If you look at our homepage, you can see we have a simple question dead centre, two lines of easily-digestible text, and our call to action. So, visitors know what we offer the second they reach our site.
This is especially important with website design for businesses because they need to make sure customers know what they’re about immediately, as most people leave a website after the first 15 seconds.
Remember your audience
Never lose sight of who your target audience is. Website visitors are not computers accessing your website, they are your customers looking for your business!
Every aspect of your web design must be targeted at attracting their attention, appealing to their emotions, and easy for them to pursue.
If a customer visits your website and wants to speak to someone to better understand, make it easy for them to call you by displaying number where it can be seen.
If you want your customer to fill out the contact form, then make sure they don’t have to spend hours trying to find it on your website.
Give your customers easy access to all the information about your products, or service using the website. You will then, relish the returns.
Optimise your website
Regardless of how beautiful or functional your website may be, make sure it is optimised.
Optimised simply means that the website is easy & fast to load
Images are minimised to a reasonable size
Files, videos, etc. are all compressed for easy loading
Make your website easy to find on Google searches (How? Keep reading for this Bonus!)
Clean up the coding of your website
So, what should you do if you missed all these elements when building your website?
Redesign… rebuild… and relaunch your website!
Contrary to popular belief, building a custom business website design or redesigning an existing website is really not as expensive as many business owners may think.
As a business owner, you should be well aware of the exact costs which may potentially bring in a lot more return for your investment.
Many reputed web design agencies in UK are able to offer standard business website redesigns or freshly built bespoke website designs starting from just £295.
Choosing the Right Website Design Layout
As we have touched upon previously, branding is very important. In addition to this, the layout of the website is also important.
Think of it like this, all of KFC and Pizza Hut’s restaurants have the same layout! You want to choose the right kind of layout for the custom website you wish to have.
The key to this is a simple design that has your own creative flare to it!
This is why WordPress is a perfect choice as there are thousands of templates available and it is the most widely used platform in the world. If built by a good web designer, with a great colour scheme, these templates can be perfected for you and your business.
The home page layout is easily the most important page and it should get its due importance on your website.
An effective home page layout design is like your own customer service agent who will constantly be available to help your visitors around the website.
The website design layout will give your website the structure it needs. The simpler the structure, the easier it will be for visitors to browse your website.
With a proper layout, you can lead your visitors down the path leading to a purchase, call, or form submission. As such, it will help you highlight the most important aspects of your business story.
The following things will be the foundation for the right design layout for your website:
Home Page Header
Content Column Width
While the majority of website designers don’t like to work in segments for layouts, it is extremely important to individually focus on their specific objectives.
The home page header design will be right at the top of the page and will be something visitors will always see. It must be carefully designed to successfully communicate your business message.
The menu bar layout should be designed to give your website a nice structure of knowing your products, learning more, finding your physical business locations or contact numbers, making a purchase, etc.
The content column width is the viewing area for your customers, so it must be able to communicate your message. This can be done effectively by making use of the space through text, images, videos or other animations.
As soon as your layout is finalised, the next steps are to move on to other aspects like choosing the typography or fonts to be used, the colour theme to be used, etc.
Importance of a Mobile-friendly or Responsive Web Design
Google prioritises mobile-friendly websites over those that aren’t so if you want your page to appear high in Google searches, this is the first thing to optimise.
The reason Google favours mobile-friendly designs is because more and more people are accessing the internet on their mobile phones. As of November 2018, 48.2% of all internet traffic took place on mobile phones, making mobile web design incredibly important.
If you don’t want to miss out on 50% of your potential market, it’s a good idea to optimise your site for mobile phones. The best way to check if your page is optimised for smartphones is to use Google’s mobile-friendly test.
Simple type in your website’s URL:
And you should see this page:
This screen instantly tells you whether your page is mobile-friendly or not. You can open a report on the rest of your website by clicking the “Open site-wide mobile usability report” button.
Now that you know a lot more about the many aspects of website design, you will now need to choose a website designer for your website.
Which designer you should choose completely depends on your requirements.
If there were ever an easier time to find the right web designer for your specific needs, it’s now!
The only problem is, the web design industry is massively saturated so finding that perfect designer can become a long, drawn-out affair.
Before you delve into the many choices and sorting them to pick one, it is important to know and decide on your exact requirements. Think of it like another milestone in your life like buying a car, a house, etc. and set out exactly your specific needs & goals.
If you do that properly, then the right option will more than likely filter itself out for you!
Where can you look for a qualified, talented website designer?
Finding a talented, qualified and reliable website designer is not easy!
But the good news is that with a little bit of work, you will be able to get find the right website designers.
So, you should always choose a website designer based on your goals rather than the options that are available. This will allow you to make the right decision!
With this in mind, let’s now look at how your needs translate to a functional website for your business.
Depending on your goals, these are the main questions you must answer:
What type of website are you looking to get built?
What functionalities do you require?
Do you want a very basic website which provides information for your visitors?
Are you looking for more functionality like bookings, purchases, etc.?
This step is essential as it will reveal the exact type of website designer you need!
How can you tell if a web designer is good?
Let’s look at some qualities which set apart good web designers from the rest!
A good web designer will inform you of the achievable features of your website based on your brief. This will include the look and the functionality of the web site.
Not only that, a good web designer in UK will be able to work in a clearly stated process to completion.
But you must consider what sort of process you want to be involved with, whether you want involvement or feedback in every stage or only in important parts of the design or maybe even just the functional aspects.
So, a good web designer will be able to suit their process to best suit your needs and requirements.
Now let’s look at web designers which you should avoid.
If a designer is unable to outline a work process or flow, then stay away!
Avoid website designers who don’t follow a clear structured process. While a written process is best, you should at least stick to one which you can go back to with clearly defined feedback stages.
It is often the case that the feedback stage is never ending, so you must ensure that your feedback is specific rather than vague.
Budget for a good website designer
A massive part of choosing a good website designer is the associated cost. And sadly, as little as possible is not a workable budget!
You must be clear to consider the cost range for a new website design, how much money and time you have to spend on it right now, and whether you have considered the cost for re-designing your existing website.
A bespoke website design is not a cost to you, it is an important investment!
Consider the return on your investment and the budget will make room for itself.
As an entrepreneur, it is always to focus on maximising your return than minimising investment. Set a budget for your website, and convert that to value to your business.
In this way, you can look into hiring a good in-house full-time website designer or an outsourced website design agency, whichever fits the bill!
How long does it take to build a business website in UK?
You may be thinking, “Okay, I just need a website and I need it now!”
Its 2019 and getting a simple, affordable, quick standard website is very easy. Whether it’s for business or personal use, there are many easy options available.
Option #1 – Website Builders
The perfect one-stop solution for those who want a readymade website without any hassles. Although it comes at a cheap price, they are pre-made templates available on monthly subscriptions. You will be limited in terms of functionalities, but you will get a website fast.
Not my recommended choice, as the user experience is not great!
Option #2 – DIY with WordPress
The most popular platform for websites in 2019 is WordPress! It comes with one of the most versatile CMS (Content Management System) for implementing supported software as you learn. It is a tough task but it provides you with 100% control and 100% open options.
Not recommended unless, you have the time & energy to invest along with your budget.
Option #3 – Website Design Agency
This is the perfect blend of the previous options, giving you full control with unlimited options at a cost. But does not dig into your valuable time or energy to learn new things. A good website design agency in UK will be able to create bespoke website design for your business within as little as just a few days. While the cost is cheaper compared to independent website designers, the service is hassle free to you and your business.
I recommend a good website agency like The Website Designer Group who provide excellent customer support in addition to great looking bespoke website designs for a competitive price.
Expectations from the Website Design Process
Before you start the process of creating or redesigning your business website, you must first understand what goes into the website design process for it to be an effective website design!
By now through reading this article you might have some idea of what to implement to make a good website. However, there are many different web design agencies around the globe that do the process a little differently.
The Web Designer Group which is one of the leading web design companies around the globe usually makes a standard website within as little as 3 working days.
So, as you can see, the design process can be both fast and professional. Which in turn makes customers happy that they can have a product finished within just a few days and the pricing is quite good as well with their standard 5-page website at just £295!
Although we don’t have a huge insight into every other company and how they create websites but you should look for a standard website design process.
Understanding Business Requirements
Know products or service
Understand business flow
Identify target group of customers
All other client requirements
Relevant information for converting visitors to customers
Helpful information which answer consumer queries
Include variety in the form of images & videos
Collect appropriate data from client
Creating Relevant Graphics
Relevant images & graphics incorporated for website
Include visually appealing graphics
Design & Development
Create design outline for mock-up
Tweak design & layout for best structure
Incorporate perfect blend of design & content
Check for complete functionality
Working links, form submissions, etc.
Working across all browsers & devices
Client feedback after complete testing & development
Check Everything & Go live
Updates & Maintenance
Optimised for digital marketing (SEO, SMM, SEM, etc.)
Functional redesigns in terms of business growth or changing goals
Regulatory changes in terms laws, regulations, policies, etc.
For entrepreneurs or any small to large business owners, the right web designer with a stated design process can create anything you wish for your business and offer your customers a reliable platform for your products or service.
This is why, we would recommend The Web Designer Group for people looking to own and operate a website for their business in the UK.
Want to Increase your Sales? Here’s a Bonus to Boost your Sales!
After you have a professionally built business website, you must remember that you have setup your store for customers to have a good experience but you must ensure that they are able to locate your business. With a website, you have somewhere for customers to shop in, but they don’t necessarily know how to get there.
As a new business website owner or even one that is established already, you may not be getting the numbers of visitors you would expect. This means you need to look into your website’s marketing strategy and how easily you can focus on simple design aspects to boost your sales.
You need to focus on modern day business aspects such as SEO, SMM, PPC, etc. in total – Digital Marketing!
Whether you take into consideration a new website or an old one, how do you measure its success? Your sales alone only account for your business success but the investment you’ve put into the website is left unmeasured. You will fail to see what’s working and what’s not!
Additionally, you will be able to measure methods and choose the most successful one for your business. If you think that you need online customers then you must look into paid ads through PPC. If most of your potential customers are on social media like Facebook, Twitter then you should focus heavily on SMM.
As we are living in the google generation, if most of your potential customers find you or your competition by searching on google then you should invest in SEO from a reputed digital marketing service provider. SEO today is one of the most successful, effective and long-term online marketing strategies for business websites.
Once you have your online presence through a professional website, you will be able to provide many services or products from your small business on the web.
The next crucial step to take is for you to get seriously involved with search engine optimisation and other forms of digital marketing for your business.
These marketing activities can get your website from nothing in the google rankings to page one, where all of your customers can see you. However, we promise to give you a complete in-depth guide to search engine optimisation and digital marketing in our next article.
In the meantime, get a website if you don’t have one and redesign it if you have missed even a tiny aspect of what we discussed in the guide today. Remember that one of the many great things about having a website is that you can share all of your great updates throughout social media.
So never underestimate what the tiniest of things can do to trigger a boost in sales. Dealing with all these small aspects will give you much exposure that you will need in starting up, or establishing, or boosting your web presence.
Other than the many things we have thoroughly covered in this guide, you can slowly begin to understand what to expect from the website design process. You will realise the importance of adding these essential elements, while incorporating responsive website design aspects.
You might even decide when planning your website requirements with your web designer or developer that you want them to think outside the box. Never back away from trying a few new things that constitute adaptive design and trends which are bound to succeed in 2019.
At the end of the day, the goal of your business website is that it needs to be relevant to your potential customers. So, you can make revenue off your website, either with call to actions or with an eCommerce system, whichever is custom built to reach your particular business goals will be most beneficial.
Hope you enjoyed reading this complete guide to website design, especially for business owners and entrepreneurs.
Let us know what you think about the tips and techniques discussed in this post and you can leave us a question in the comments if you’d like to learn more about how to make your online business successful.
This point alone is enough reason for you to create a business website. 60% of consumers use Google to search for the services they need and without a storefront on this huge platform, your business could easily be overlooked.
That’s why it’s important to have a business website on Google, Bing or another popular search engine.
You’ll appear more trustworthy
A staggering 90% of consumers claim that online reviews influence who they purchase their services from. Think about it, when was the last time you bought something from Amazon or Ebay without checking the reviews of the product or seller?
You can rely on Checkatrade, Yell, and other directory sites to handle the reviews for you, or, you could aggregate all your reviews into one place instead of diluting them across multiple platforms.
Not only that, you can include testimonials from your most loyal clients to give new customers complete faith in you as a business.
You get more for your money
Sending out brochures by mail, paying a fee every month to Yell (for a very minimal amount of web space), and generally sharing the name of your business through word-of-mouth is not good enough for our current, internet-driven climate.
If you buy a business networking website it can cost you less than £300 annually and you’ll reach thousands more customers than you would through traditional methods.
You control the perception
It’s true that you can’t control what others say about you on social media channels, on Google or Trustpilot reviews, or anywhere else on the web. However, you can influence public perception by creating your own story via business websites.
A company blog helps business owners get their message, mission, and personality across to their target audience, at a much quicker rate than with print ads or snail mail brochures.
Your competitors all have business websites
Consumers typically start their buying journey with research and recommendations from friends, family, and social network connections.
Studies show that once a consumer has an idea of what they want, two thirds of them research the product or service online first. If you have zero web presence you wont even be in the race with any competitor who has.
Showcase your products and services
With a website you can put all your amazing products and services on display. If you’re using a third party website, a customer will see your company name, maybe a few reviews to give them some reassurance, but no visual representation of what you actually offer.
Images are the best way for a customer to decide if they want to use your service or buy your products. This is why websites are known as digital storefronts.
You’ll show up in Google search results
So, we’ve talked a lot about how important Google is to the customer journey. It’s the first place they go to find a service and the quicker they can find you, the better.
For example, if a customer searches “handyman in Manchester” you want to be the first result they find as 30% of customers click the first link they see.
This is why so many web design companies offer Search Engine Optimisation as part of their overall site-building package. In order to appear on the first page of Google you need to have a site, and you need a web design company to push you there.
At The Web Designer Group we develop websites at a base price of £295 that only increases if you request additional content. We also offer expert SEO services, which you can learn more about by calling our friendly team of SEO specialists on 0800 09 88 508.
I hope this post helped convince you that the internet is the marketplace of the future and that in order to be part of that marketplace, you need to be as visible as possible.
In this article, we’re going to get into the nitty-gritty of silo and what it’s all about, and of course, what the best WordPress Silo Plug-ins are.
Many bloggers put a lot of effort into their content and the relevance of the blog post, trying to make it as timeless as possible so that the Google Gods can bless them with traffic for months to come. But often, bloggers don’t realise or pour much attention into the structure of their blog itself.
Sure, they may want their blog to look pretty and they’ll put hours of work into making their website look sophisticated, but the architecture of the website is not something a lot of bloggers pay attention towards, at least the amateur ones. This is where Silo comes in. Silo is a strong and effective tool to completely change the feel of your website, making it easy to navigate among many other benefits.
What is Silo?
Have you ever had a bad teacher? Not the stereotypical kind who berated every student and was extremely strict, but the well-meaning kind who just wouldn’t teach properly? He’d be an expert on the subject but he wouldn’t be able to teach you the subject properly. He’d teach you chapters and themes in random orders and talk about things that seemed related but you couldn’t figure out how they were related because he just wouldn’t go about teaching in a structured way. This kind of a bad teacher is exactly what a typical non-silo website is like.
It has all the information but it doesn’t present it in a structured way so it’s hard to navigate through the website which leads to less engagement. Silo counters that. Silo structures your entire website on the basis of niches and keywords and presents it in an easy-to-navigate, SEO-friendly way. It groups together relevant information under separate topics, making your website look much cleaner.
Why use Silo?
There are a number of reasons to use Silo and all of them are extremely helpful. The main ones, however, stand out because they give you a lot of benefits for very little effort.
Readability– In a world where almost half the population of the entire planet uses the internet, there is an abundance of information on the internet. This means that there are many blogs that are writing about the same subject as you. And since there’s so much information out there, if your blog isn’t easy to navigate, people will just switch over to one that is.This is why the structure and readability and accessibility of your website is extremely important. Silo is an easy way to make your website structured and neat so that one can easily peruse through the content you post.
SEO benefits– Google loves niche websites with topics that are relevant to those specific websites. For this reason, if a tech website posts about fashion tips, Google won’t promote it as much as it would a fashion website talking about fashion tips.When you use Silo, you group together all the posts about similar topics and interlink them with each other, making Google recognise your posts and giving you more visibility on its webpage.
How does it work?
Silo is not native to WordPress so implementing it on a WordPress site is harder. What you need to do to implement Silo is to organise your entire website using keywords. Since keywords hold such an important place in your web structure, make sure to use good primary and secondary keywords. Next, on a WordPress site, you need to create a post using rich images and main keywords. Including a table of contents and other visual aids is effective as well.
Next, you need to link all your relevant posts to each other to create specific blocks of content. So for example, if you have 3 posts on the topic of meditation, make sure to link all three to each other and then have a link to the parent page. Do this with all similar content. This creates a Silo structure and ensures that Google notices relevant information on your page.
Best Silo Plug-ins
Now that you know the basics of Silo, on to the main list of plug-ins you can use to create an effective Silo structure:
WPCashLinks LITE– This plugin allows you to link your keywords to affiliate websites, allowing users to simply click on a hyperlinked keyword which will lead them to the affiliate page. This helps you turn a profit on your post that is not completely related to traffic.
Related Posts for WordPress– This is one of the main plug-ins to use for Silo. It allows you to link related content on your website with a single click. All you need to do is show the plug-in which posts you want to link and it’ll do it for you.
Breadcrumb NXT– As the name suggests, this plugin allows you to create highly customisable breadcrumb trail on your WordPress page.
Custom Sidebars– This plugin allows you to create widgets on any of your posts and link them all to your parent web page.
Redirection– To reduce web page errors, this plugin allows you to redirect any of your specific blog posts to their Silo page that is the main category page. This helps improve your sites stature and reduces errors.
Yoast SEO– This is a powerful plugin for WordPress that allows you to create an effective Silo structure for your WordPress page. It allows you full control over your breadcrumbs and interlinking suggestions. The Redirect Manager present within this plugin keeps your site healthy and helps with redirection.
No Swear WP Internal Links Lite– Making Silo interlinks easier, this plugin links your pages to each other and to the parent site. It gives you full control over your Silo structure, making it extremely easy to manipulate and change as you wish.
In the last few years, Google’s main objective has been to move everyone to a safer and more secure web. One of the most highly effective ways to do this has been to secure your web pages by moving them to HTTPS. Although this is a great idea, it has a few caveats. One of them being the loss of organic traffic that blogs sustain when they move their web pages to HTTPS. In this article, we’re going to show you how to combat this problem while simultaneously making your web pages safer and more secure.
What are HTTPS and SSL?
SSL is an acronym for Secure Socket Layer. What this means is that SSL, as a security protocol, ensures that all communication between a server and a browser be encrypted. Any and all information, private or not, such as passwords, usernames, credit/debit card information or any other information input by the user is encrypted and safe.
HTTPS or Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure is a newer version of HTTP or simply Hyper Text Transfer Protocol. The only difference these two is an ‘s’ but that ‘s’ is extremely important for your safety as an internet user and your blog’s security as a blogger. How HTTPS works is that along with the help of an SSL or TLS (Transport Layer Security) certificate, it uses something known as an asymmetric Public Key Infrastructure to encrypt data.
There are two keys in use with this. The public key and the private key. Only the user of the computer has access to the private key which is why their data is protected. In case of websites and blogs, the private key is embedded into the website.
Why should you move from HTTP to HTTPS?
When you use an HTTP connection, all of the data being sent through the network is sent as plain text and is not encrypted. This makes all the data susceptible to attack which can compromise private information. HTTPS, on the other hand, encrypts your data so that it’s extremely difficult to break into the network. When you use an HTTPS connection, all of your customers’ and visitors’ information will be secure and in case they want to purchase something from your website, their private data will be secure and so will the payment.
Users have generally stopped trusting sites that still use HTTP connections because providing any sort of data to these sites is a risky matter. On the other hand, if your domain has an HTTPS connection, users are more likely to think of you as a professional website and can verify your authenticity. Google has also stated that it offers a small SEO benefit to sites that switch from HTTP to HTTPS. But the opposite seems to be happening. Blog owners are reporting that they are losing traffic post-switch. Why is this?
Why is HTTPS leading to a loss of traffic?
Many websites and blog owners have reported a sudden drop in their number of visitors after they switched to the secure domain. Now, since the number of visitors is supposed to increase, according to Google, why is the opposite happening?
It’s because of a host of reasons, but broadly, it’s because people are not switching over correctly. They aren’t changing links or implementing redirects, so anyone that clicks on a link to the website before it was changed to HTTPS is going to receive an error message since there was no redirecting order from the user.
How to correctly switch to HTTPS
The reason so many people have reported sudden drops in traffic is that of incorrect migration. The following steps are to be followed if you want to correctly change your domain and hopefully gain a little traffic along the way.
Purchase an SSL certificate– The first step is to purchase and install an SSL certificate of 2048-bit key encryption. Depending on the type of SSL certificate, the costs can go anywhere from $10 up to $300 per year.
To purchase an SSL certificate, contact a certification centre such as Comodo or contact your web hosting provider. After the installation of the SSL certificate is done, check if it’s working by going to your website using HTTPS.
Change your URL– The next step is to change your site’s URL to HTTPS. If you’re using WordPress, go to the settings menu, then to the General tab. After you’re done saving the changes you’ll be logged out of WordPress and will have to log in again.
Add Redirects– As mentioned before, not everyone is going to notice that your site moved from HTTP to HTTPS so they might still use the HTTP URL to locate your website. To make sure that instead of getting a redirection error they are redirected to your HTTPS site, edit your .htaccess file.
Search and Replace– All your internal links will have the HTTP URL instead of the HTTPS one so you need to change that by using a Search and Replace plugin to change the HTTP to HTTPS. For instance, search ‘http://www.exampleurl.net’ to change to ‘https://www.exampleurl.net’. This should change all your internal links to HTTPS.
Add website to Google Search Console– To officially inform Google that you have changed from HTTP to HTTPS, you need to add your HTTPS website to the Google Search Console. Make sure that you have both HTTP and HTTPS URLs as Google sees them as different websites.
Check Robots.txt– Robots.txt can sometimes block others from accessing your site. To change this, go to the Google Search Console, select robots.txt tester. Click the Test button and see if you get a green bar. If you do your site isn’t being blocked.
Resubmit to Google– Go to Fetch as Google on the Google Search Console and click Fetch and Render. For errors, check the Partial link and if there are no errors click Submit To Index and then Submit All URLs.
Those are the steps to correctly change your website from HTTP to HTTPS.
You may not be aware of this but the Internet is filled with thousands of dead blogs and perhaps your website is one of them. The good news is that there are ways you can use to rejuvenate your blog again. If you’re already running a blog, it’s about time that you assert yourself and achieve your blogging objectives and your business’ objectives as well.
Although companies like a web factory can help you give a new life to your dead blog, here are some ways on how you can rejuvenate your already dormant blog.
Figure Out Why Your Blog Failed the First Time
Before you start adding new content, take the time to check all aspects of your blog. Does the template need an update? What about your CMS and publishing platform? Are you using the latest version? Is the software in your plug-ins updated? Are there any broken links that you need to remove? These are just some of the questions you need to ask yourself when checking your blog.
Do Market Research
The lack of insightful niche content is one of the biggest reasons why visitors ignore reading a blog. You may want to reconsider your blog’s direction and create a list of future article titles ahead of time. This could save you a lot of time and help you get back into the routine.
Work on Social Media Presence
If you want to make your blog known, then you need to work on your social media presence. By promoting your blog through social media, people may be able to recognise it. They will listen to what you are going to say and learn from your experience. Furthermore, they will be eager to share ideas with you, partner with you, collaborate and share your content while providing testimonials and reviews. You have to look at social media as some form of networking and use it to reach out to people and engage with your audience. If you need help in using social media to promote your blog, web factory is a great option.
Give Personality to Your Blog
One of the most important steps to breathe new life into your old blog is to revamp its design, tagline, and perhaps, even your logo. You can also choose to change your vision and mission if you feel that yours is already out-dated. The key is to infuse new personality and character to your blog. Remember that your blog is an extension of your business persona. Thus, demonstrating your personality and character through your blog is one way to make your business heard.
Mix Things Up
Your newly revived blog can gain traction faster if you’re going to infuse different types of content in it. Think of videos and infographics that would easily catch the eyes of your viewers. You may also include how-to articles, listicles, and other interesting content. Try a wide variety of content and see which ones are effective and stick to it. Web factory can share some interesting content that you can include in your blog.
A friend of mine recently stayed at a luxury villa in the South of France which was so high-tech that the toilet seat could pick itself up and flush automatically, and on the shower wall was a computerised touch pad that they could use to regulate water temperature, intensity etc.
Now, far from basking in all this luxury, my friend realised something new about himself through this experience; that sometimes when we try to simplify things, we make them even more complicated.
I’ve chosen to open this post with this story because it demonstrates our need to make things harder in the name of innovation and technological advancement.
This same problem is present in the online security industry today, where you’ll find countless industry gurus that employ complicated technical jargon to sell you seemingly effective security products that are actually overpriced and will negatively affect your website’s functionality, as shown in plenty of artist website examples.
The good news is that we’ve got some simple, easy and practical tips that you can apply to increase website security without sacrificing UX (user experience). Read on for more.
Use reCaptcha to Verify Forms
The great thing about this particular feature is that once you apply it, your website will become exponentially easier to browse while you will simultaneously protect it from hackers and spamming.
Of course, you’ll have to invest a considerable amount of time in order to setup reCaptcha for all the purchase and lead forms on your website but it will be well worth it in the end.
And while some users might get annoyed at the requirement to confirm that they’re not a robot, the whole thing takes less than a second and most users are most likely used to it by now as more and more websites are using it, according to many artist website examples.
Limit the Number of Plugins
While downloading many plugins that promise to improve website UX might seem like a good idea, it actually isn’t as shown by numerous artist website examples. The only true way to ensure improved UX is to take care of the basics, such as ensuring fast loading pages, a streamlined and simple design, as well as easy manoeuvrability.
Plus, the only result that you’ll get from overloading your website with plugins is compromised security which beats the whole purpose of what you’re trying to achieve in the first place.
For the best results, choose your plugins carefully and only go for those that will add value to UX while staying within the CMS rules and guidelines. It won’t hurt to consult with your website builder as well.
Have a Secret WP Login Page
To avoid getting hacked, create a separate and secret login URL for your WordPress page, as that’ll provide an additional barrier to entry for unscrupulous hackers that might guess their way through to your admin dashboard.
To change your current website URL to a custom address, you can use ManageWP or a similar plugin that will create a significant stumbling block to even the most advanced hackers.
Nowadays, having a website is not a luxury. Instead, it’s a necessity for every business. However, just because you’ve invested in truly attractive web design doesn’t mean that you are already attracting customers into your business and eventually increasing your sales.
While there are numerous reasons why your website could end up being ineffective, here are some of the most common reasons why some websites fail.
Contains a Lot of Jargon
So you’re an expert in your field and you want to show to your readers your knowledge about your niche. But except if you want to limit your audience to only a group of tech experts, your average customer may not understand the technical terms and other jargon that you’ll use when describing some aspects of your business. So try to avoid using jargon when writing content for your website.
Doesn’t Show Essential Information
Aside from looking for information that can help to make their lives better, your customers will also look for some other important information like the location of your business, contact information, product and service details, and pricing. You would be surprised at how many businesses don’t have these important details available on their website. If you want your customers to know more about your business, then there’s really no excuse for excluding this information from your website.
It’s Not Mobile Friendly
This shouldn’t come as a surprise but recent data shows that mobile usage has actually surpassed desktop. And as the use of smartphones continues to grow all over the world, this trend will also continue. This means that Internet usage is now slowly moving away from desktops to portable devices like tablets and smartphones. If your website is not mobile friendly, then you can’t expect higher conversion rates.
Doesn’t Have Enough Content
Your customers turn to your website to search for solutions to their problems. Unfortunately, they can’t find the information that they need simply because your website doesn’t have enough content. This is why it’s very important that your website is constantly updated and contains new and valuable information that addresses your customer’s real-life questions.
Loads Very Slowly
Customers prefer to visit a website that loads quickly. And this is very important to remember because statistics show that almost 80% of online shoppers are less likely to visit a website again if they don’t enjoy the website experience. There are certain tools that you can use to test the speed of your website so take advantage of them.
Doesn’t Have Clear Calls-to-Action
The last thing you want is to leave your visitors guessing what you want them to do on your website. Therefore, you need to give your customers instructions by providing a clear call-to-action button. You can also choose a web design package that already includes call-to-action buttons. Remember that without a call-to-action button, your potential customers can’t move forward to buying the products or services that you’re selling.
We know that as a business owner or marketer your time is already tight and adding business blogging as an extra responsibility seems unnecessary. However, when you consider the benefits offered by starting and managing your own business blog, you’d probably change your mind.
For one, blogging can help you form a more interactive relationship with customers, as they’ll appreciate your regular blog posts instead of always being greeted by the same page every time they visit your website.
Secondly, posting good content on a regular basis enables you to retain your current customers, making it a nearly effortless way for you to ensure repeat business.
Also, blogging will improve the relevance and ranking of your website on the Google search engine index. Plus, regularly posting good quality content is a fundamental aspect of good SEO and will keep you in your customers’ good books.
If you want to reap these and other benefits of business blogging, read on for some helpful tips on how to get your business blog going, and make sure you hire a website designer so you can end up with a great website.
What is Good Business Blogging?
Business blogging is similar to the marketing techniques that you’re already familiar with, in that it requires you to invest a lot of your time in order to see results. You also have to keep in mind that there’s a difference between simply blogging and actually doing it right.
For example, it’s easy to get hyped up about business blogging when you initially hear about its benefits, but all the hype and planning in the world will not get you a world-class blog if you don’t put time and energy into it. Posting once a month won’t cut it, and publishing sales articles definitely won’t impress your site visitors either. It gets even worse when a site owner doesn’t even bother to interact with customers to respond to comments and questions in the comments section.
On the other hand, if you start your business blogging journey by putting together a detailed content calendar along with your website design, you’ll be a bit more motivated to follow through with it. This means posting at least two long-form articles per week that have an informative yet fun and quirky angle, and then dropping by to interact with site visitors by responding to comments and questions in the comments section throughout the week. You can even go as far as to continue the conversation on your social media accounts if you have time, so you can really increase your brand profile and get the results you want.
What to Write About?
There are plenty of different formats that you can choose from when it comes to writing blog posts and these include:
Informative Content: These types of articles are crucial to a business blog because they will always be relevant and will continue to bring visitors to your site. For example, if your company sells vegan meat alternatives, posting recipe articles about your products will appeal to the wider vegan community and bring value to your customers.
“Linkbait” Posts: This content style is all about getting the maximum number of page links per post, and is usually in the form of “listicles” or will have an attention-grabbing heading for maximum effect.
Commentary or Industry News: This type of content is a great way to establish your site as an authority in your field and can play a huge role in improving your search engine rankings as well.
Behind the Scenes Posts: You can also post blogs about what goes on behind the scenes of your company, and you can hire a website designer to do it for you in video or image form.
GDPR, or The General Data Protection Regulation, is a detailed upgrade of information protection regulations throughout the EU. It puts on the handling of individual data.
Exactly what is the UK and EU Data Protection?
In the EU, individual data can just be accumulated under stringent conditions for legitimate purposes just. Those that collect and also take care of personal information must protect it from abuse and also have to appreciate information security regulation.
What is Personal Information?
Personal information is data relating to a living individual that can be identified from that information. Individual information can consist of names, addresses, National Insurance policy (social security) numbers and CCTV of people. It is anything which could identify a living person. Personal data can be in digital or hard copy format.
Just what does GDPR have to say about it?
Personal data have to be processed in a manner that guarantees the proper safety of the data, consisting of protection versus unauthorised or unlawful handling and also against unintentional loss, damage or damage, using proper technological or organisational actions.
When does GDPR actually go live?
GDPR takes effect on 25th May 2018
What is the point of GDPR?
1- To provide people a lot more control over just how their individual data is used
2 – To enhance consumer trust in the ever-evolving electronic economic environment.
3 – Make information security legislation equivalent throughout all Europe
The six principles of data security
These six principles need to be the core of any type of data security. Data shall be:
1 – Collected and processed lawfully, without prejudice and also in a transparent way.
2 – Accumulated or specified, explicit as well as reputable purposes as well as not be subsequently used in such a way that goes against those preliminary purposes of collection.
3 – Relevant, adequate, and also minimal to what is necessary.
4 – Accurate and current data (Errors ought to be processed, erased or corrected immediately)
5 – Retained for no longer than is essential.
6 – Securely processed.
Things to keep in mind
Authorisation gets tougher under GDPR. There are no opt-outs or silence allowed – an energetic process is required to provide authorisation. There is likewise a demand to show that consent has actually been offered. For instance, an active process such as box-ticking will have to be established.
Right to be forgotten
Provides the private the right to have his individual data gotten rid of “without undue hold-up”.
Subject access request
The Topic Access Demand is a procedure whereby somebody can exercise their right to gain access to information held on them. This has to be answered within one month of invoice of the demand
When do you need to report data violations? If a breach is considered as being ‘major’ you will have to inform a regulatory authority about a lot of violations within 72 hrs. You could also need to educate damaged people too.
What is a data breach?
A breach of security leading to the accidental or unlawful destruction, loss, change, unauthorised disclosure of, or accessibility to, personal data transmitted, kept or otherwise used for processing.
Considering the fact that the majority of internet users access the Google search engine from a mobile device, it makes sense that Google would prioritise the mobile version of a website’s content instead of the web version.
This is what mobile-first indexing refers to, and it’s a fairly new development that Google made official last year. As such, it has become an integral part of bespoke website design.
What is mobile-first indexing?
In practical terms, mobile-first indexing is the mobile version of your website. This mobile site is then used by Google for ranking and indexing purposes. This is to better serve mobile users who are the primary users of the Google search engine.
That’s why it’s so important for business websites to use responsive themes that are able to adapt to the user’s needs, as this will mean immediate adherence to mobile-first indexing. That said, there are still websites out there which are yet to migrate over to mobile-first indexing because they still consist of two versions; mobile and web-based. These will have to be updated in order to keep up with best practices or else face falling into obscurity.
Google indexing roll-outs
Not too long ago, Google confirmed that it would be rolling out a new form of indexing that would prioritise mobile content over web-based content. However, only those websites which adhere to mobile-first practices would benefit, and although this was a small number initially, it has grown significantly over the past year.
Websites that have transitioned to mobile-first indexing are generally notified via Google search console messages. These messages will basically let the website owner know that they might start seeing an increase in Googlebot from now on as a result of their site being a part of mobile-first indexing.
You may also notice that it’s the mobile version of your website that’s generating the majority of your Google search results. These and other changes in Google search results are pretty much the only difference you’ll notice after switching to mobile-first indexing, which you can get as part of a bespoke website design package.
While you can get away with reducing the word count on your mobile content in order to save space, make sure that it’s not too different from your website content as skimping on value will definitely cost you when it comes to rankings in the long run
Make sure you check your robot.txt directives
Make sure that there’s metadata on both the web and mobile versions of your site
Make sure that there’s systematic and proper data structuring on both the mobile and web versions
Use search console to verify both the mobile and web versions of your site
Make sure that your server has enough capacity to handle mobile-first indexing