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Everyone has a website these days. And almost everyone needs one. But your website needs more than pretty colors and a sparkling cursor to be successful. Read these 5 suggestions for building a successful website, and then ask us how we can help you get started.

1. Purpose

This is both important and often overlooked by most people. Oh, you have a website? Great. Why?

Answer this question and you’re half way to success already. Deciding the purpose of your website is like deciding what makes your site successful. Do you want to sell a product? Inform your visitors about a specific topic? After you define the purpose of your site, focus your energy on promoting the purpose of the site and choose measurable goals that indicate if your site is successful at it’s purpose — whether that’s booking your punk band at more children’s birthday parties or increasing sales of sweaters for puppies by 200 percent by the end of the year.

Focus your energy on promoting the purpose of the site and choose measurable goals that indicate if your site is successful at it’s purpose.

2. Responsive Layout

A responsive layout means your website resizes itself based on the screen size of the device a visitor is using, whether it’s a desktop, tablet or smartphone. This means you only have one website to update but it’s easily accessible on all platforms. There’s no “mobile site” that needs to be revised and reviewed independently. Streamlining your ability to add relevant content and engage with your visitors saves you time and effort, and helps visitors have a consistent, helpful experience every time they visit the site.

3. Clean Design

Although many people would say this is a “given,” a clean design is often under-appreciated. A 12-color palette may seem fun and exciting, but when users are presented with a kaleidoscope instead of a clean design, they are going to bounce off the site and find something that doesn’t give them migraines. When you see a new, interesting technique on a website, think twice before you decide your site needs it, too. Using every flashy tactic in existence to entice visitors can create a muddled design that is too difficult to navigate. Choose only the best, essential design elements to make your site unique, attractive and practical.

4. Clear Navigation

Sure, you might like the idea of using images of Greek statues in your navigation bar instead of listing the names of the different pages. But no one is going to understand the navigation, and they will leave the site. If you have a clear purpose for your site, then you know where you want your visitors to go and you’ll need to make good decisions about how to get them there efficiently. Develop your navigation system based on visitors’ wants and needs, and provide the clearest possible path to get them where they want to go.

5. SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

“If my site is awesome, won’t people just find it?” Not necessarily. Optimizing your website through the use of keywords, regularly updated and relevant content, and other SEO tactics allows search engines like Google and Bing to find your site and suggest it to interested visitors. Want your page at the top of the search results list? That’s what SEO does. You can make a beautiful, clear site that can be viewed on any device and that easily guides visitors to fulfill the purpose of the site, but if no one ever finds the site, all the other tactics may be fruitless.

By following these 5 suggestions, you can begin creating a successful website that does exactly what you want it to do. Neglect these suggestions, and you may just find someone asking your punk band if they have any sweaters for puppies on sale today.

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Author Thoma Thoma

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