For some businesses, 2016 was an excellent year: full of potential, productivity, and success. For others, 2017 couldn’t come fast enough.
Most firms have a few items or processes they can improve on, whether they feel the last year was a success as a whole or not. The start of a new year presents a chance to address some of the moves that weren’t so successful.
As you make goals to benefit your company, don’t forget about updating your web design. According to trend forecasts, 2017 will bring some new changes, particularly in layouts, workflow design, and graphics principles.
If you want your firm to remain competitive, resolving to improve your current website could result in heightened conversions, traffic, and customer engagement. Here are some resolutions you should might consider making to achieve those goals.
1. Design for Your Niche
Too many small business owners miss the essence of designing for their niche. They choose a theme that attracts them, whether its functionality or flavor applies to their niche.
But a website that will achieve your business purposes and increase engagement on the part of your target customer base will require a design that pushes a little closer to home.
You might possibly identify a more suitable design for your niche by researching web site templates that are especially designed for your niche. If you’re building a real estate website, for example, you might research “modern real estate WordPress themes,” and study the results for ideas.
2. Make It WCAG Compliant
In 2015 and 2016, many matters ended up in court to represent the interests of people with impaired vision and hearing who had encountered inaccessible websites. Too many sites were noncompliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), which dictate the ways that those with disabilities should be able to access content.
It’s become a form of discrimination to leave WCAG compliance out of your site design. Your small business probably isn’t at quite as high a risk of running into legal trouble with a WCAG suit as a major corporation, but whatever the risk, it’s not worth it.
Court battles are expensive and time consuming, and a luxury that most small businesses can’t afford. This year, you should do what is necessary to comply with all WCAG regulations so you can dodge a potential bullet.
3. Include Modern Design
Small firms are infamous for maintaining outdated websites. It’s time-consuming and expensive to update your site, so many companies may put it off for years.
But this results in the survival of outdated site designs that may turn customers away and even hurt your search rankings. Every year, new design trends emerge that are worth watching and even incorporating into your site.
This year, check out dark aesthetics, bold typefaces, geometric details, VR elements, and other trending website design ideas.
4. Finally Optimize for SEO
Optimizing your website for SEO is a fairly simple and necessary step to achieve higher online search rankings, but harried small-business owners often neglect this. Remind yourself that about 93 percent of all online activity begins with an online a search query, and if you invest in SEO optimization, your website is more likely to hook some of those organic searches.
Start by including more SEO optimized factors in your underlying design. If you make use of SEO plugins such as WordPress SEO, SEMRush, LInkPatrol, Google Keyword Planner, and other page-optimization tools, you can gather data and resources that will improve your SEO game.
Focusing on the quality of your website is also essential for gaining authority status in Google rankings. Speed up your pages, use metadata to categorize images, improve the visual design, update blog posts, and perform other functions that will make your site more attractive to both Google and users.