Guest post by Brianna Flierl
If you want to have the best chance of succeeding with a new business, you could do a lot worse than to follow the lead of the global leaders and focus on online marketing to ensure that your business is highly visible from day one.
Whilst some of the biggest companies may spend millions on their corporate sites, you can produce a professional-looking site using SiteZulu business website builder or one of the other free web development and design tools that can be found online.
More important than the amount of money you spend is the effort that you make to get your message across clearly. These free online tools will allow you to achieve this aim without spending a penny, which could be very handy in the early days when money is tight.
- It can be hard to create a new site from scratch but with an online website builder, you will be presented with a number of basic themes that you can use as a starting point when developing your first site. To avoid the most common mistakes that newbies are prone to make, read the following tips.
- Loading times are of vital importance. Whilst it is true that relatively few people use dial-up internet connections these days, there are numerous other factors apart from connection speed that can affect the time it takes for a visitor’s browser to receive a response from the server on which your site is hosted. For this reason, it is a good idea to avoid using extremely large images as backgrounds for your pages or to advertise the products you are selling as they could exacerbate any loading time issues that visitors are already experiencing.
- Clear navigation is essential. If you want to make sure that visitors to your site are able to find the information they require as quickly as possible, you need to provide them with an easy way to navigate your site. Creative menu designs can be very effective but well labelled menus that are neither too complicated to be practical nor too simple to be of much use are the best choice if you want to make life as easy as possible for your visitors.
- Text should be easy to read and to the point. It can be tempting to try unusual colour schemes such as red text on a black background but unless you want to give potential customers a headache and send them scurrying away to your competitors, this is probably a bad idea. If you keep in mind that you are trying to create an effective marketing tool and not aiming to win a prize for the most outlandish website design, you should be able to avoid dropping any clangers as far as readability is concerned. In order for your marketing messages to be effective, they absolutely have to be easy to read.
- Use animated images sparingly, if at all. Unless the nature of your business demands animations on your website, it is probably best to avoid them. In common with larger pictures, they can have a detrimental effect on loading times and, furthermore, they can be very distracting when they are placed next to important textual content.
When you start a new site, it is best to avoid ideas that are too avant-garde and stick to tried and tested layouts instead. The web design principles that work best in 2014 are much the same as those that have always worked well so do not spend too much time trying to reinvent the wheel when you are putting together your very first website.
Brianna Flierl is a freelance writer for SiteZulu business website builder, a specialist when it comes to the web design and development. A company aiming to help clients make a simple yet professional-looking site more easily.