The Do’s and Don’ts of Website Design and Development
A beautiful, effective website is your most powerful marketing tool. You can be a leader in your industry, but if your website is difficult to navigate or understand, it probably won’t help you attract and convert prospective customers. To help you improve your website, we’ve outlined some tips for effective website design, as well as how to hire a web designer to get the most bang for your buck.
1. Designer vs. Developer: What’s the Difference?
A web designer is someone who creates the look and feel of your website. A designer chooses colors, helps with branding, assembles layouts, and creates mockups of what the website will look like. Think of him or her as the creative eye behind the big picture of your website. At our agency, we design websites to be aesthetically pleasing, easy to navigate, and consistent with the brand.
A web developer is someone who uses a designer’s mockups to build a website that works, flows and functions efficiently. Some of the most effective websites are built on a content management system (CMS) called WordPress. A developer may customize an existing WordPress theme or build a completely custom WordPress theme. Our in-house developer builds custom websites using the site maps and wireframes our designer creates.
2. Keep it Simple
As with any design, web design relies heavily on the principle of “less is more.” If your website is an explosion of color, text, shapes, flames, and lightning… that can be more distracting than enticing. On the other hand, your website shouldn’t be too simple. User experience requires smart design and smart placement. To find this happy balance, make sure your site map is on-point. This will help keep it simple and uncluttered while still driving conversions.
3. Functionality is Essential
Just like keeping it simple, the functionality of your website can make or break a sale. If your audience is confused or can’t understand how your website works, it’s not doing its job. Some websites have too many pages and buttons, causing visitors to spend more time clicking than actually getting where they want. The simplicity of design and functionality of a website go hand-in-hand in creating a user experience that is pleasing and efficient.
4. The Importance of CTAs
Each page on your website should entice the reader to do something. Whether it’s to call, sign up, make a purchase, or download, clear and attractive call-to-action buttons can help increase engagement and drive conversions. This should be your ultimate goal for website visits.
5. When to Hire a Designer and Web Developer
Creating a website can be a daunting task. There are free services that allow anyone to create websites, but these can be confusing and cause more issues down the road. Hiring a designer and developer is the best way to save time and headaches.
6. You Get What You Pay for
Invest in strategy. It’s always nice to save a couple bucks, but when it comes to your website, cheaper is not always better. Ask yourself how much you’re really saving if your website doesn’t help, or worse, causes problems for your business.
Your home page is the first impression many visitors will have of your company, followed by how easy it is to navigate. Bad web design can cost you business, which is why MCG carefully designs websites to be visually appealing as well as strategically focused so that your website doesn’t fall short of expectations. Want to see a few of MCG’s award-winning websites? Check out some of our recent projects.