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J David Ford

Why Good Designs Matter for your Business

I recently read an ebook called "101 Tips for your business in 2010", published by Smart Company.  There are lots of great tips included in this document, but the tips that caught my attention are "A PROFESSIONAL WEBSITE IS CRUCIAL" and "DESIGN SHOULD BE THE MOST VISIBLE COMPONENT OF YOUR MIX".  As a designer and owner of a web design studio, I'm naturally going to see these tips as very valuable.  However, there's something important here that can be applied to all our businesses and/or organizations.

The tip about having a professional website being crucial is provided by Craig Reardon.  He states:

These days you can forget your Yellow Pages, exhibitions, radio and even television advertising as being the priority. If you don’t have a professional website, you simply won’t get taken seriously by a growing, web savvy market. For some years now the web has been the first port of call for finding information on any product or service. 

From Vegemite to vitamin supplements, from beds to brain scanners, consumers and business buyers alike consult the web for information on products and services to meet their needs.

 Therefore, if your website doesn’t look and operate professionally, and ioptimized for search engines, you can wave your customers goodbye.

When I go to a website that doesn't look professional or function well, I get disappointed and quickly lose interest in their products or services being offered.  This is especially true when I'm trying to order something online and their shopping process is cumbersome and hard to follow.  What about those sites that have information so scattered and hard to find?  All these types of issues with websites can hurt your customers' image of your company. 

I hate to bring up the cliche idea that the first impression is so important.  Well, I agree with this cliche and I have experienced this to be true.  After all, you're relating to customers and products in an emotional way and if you aren't "feeling it", you aren't going to spend time or money for it. 

The second tip that is relevant is also by Craig Reardon. He states:

The problem is that in these days of more sophisticated and ever-changing eMarketing, the ‘design’ component of your web presence is really just a small but publicly visible tip of your online iceberg.

To that end, the web ‘designer’ has become a specialist in the eMarketing world. They specialize in making your website (ideally) look good. 

But what about the raft of other website and eMarketing requirements you are going to need? 

Such as your strategy, search engine optimization, search engine advertising, email marketing, Web 2.0 marketing, usability, website features, content management systems, etc, etc.

 While your web designer may well be qualified to make your website look good, there’s every chance they are not up to speed with some of these increasingly important components.

This point is so important to consider when choosing a vendor to create your website.  Are they still using the old table based html layout that doesn't translate well in the eyes of search engines?  Are you struggling to get hold of your "web master", so you can make a change to your website pages?  By finding the right vendor that understands the importance of all these requirements, you're able to have a successful online presence.  You have to not only look the part, but to be functional, and to be findable.

That’s where we come in . . .

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