How Effective Web Design Helps Business
Web design can help or hurt a business depending on the quality of design. Apart from appearance, there are a lot of unseen technical aspects of website development that have an impact on a business. The four metrics commonly measured to evaluate a website are performance, accessibility, best practices, and SEO. These measurements can be viewed on any website in the Google Chrome browser by running a Lighthouse report in the inspector tools. In this article, I am going to explain each metric and how it has an effect on a business website.
Website performance is a major factor in search engine ranking of results. Google uses page speed as a ranking factor in order to provide high-quality results to searchers. Longer load times have a negative impact on user experience and can lead to higher bounce rates. The bounce rate is the percentage of visitors that leave the site before viewing additional pages and information. Having a low bounce rate increases the chance of converting website visitors to customers. Performance-based web design helps a business website rank in the top search results, allowing customers to find you instead of the competition.
When designing a website it is important to consider the needs of all users. Web accessibility is the inclusive practice of ensuring that common paths are clear of any barriers that could potentially prevent access or cause frustration. Web accessibility guidelines include:
- Font size
- Color contrast ratios
- Semantic HTML
- Alternate text for images
- Keyboard navigation
Under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) websites are considered “places of public accommodation”. This means that websites with inaccessible components can be seen as discriminatory against persons with disabilities. The ADA is a strict liability law which means there are no excuses for violations. Accessibility based web design helps a business to be inclusive of all customers while limiting liabilities.
This category is somewhat general and covers the fundamentals of web design. These are things that will likely go unnoticed by the user. However, these web design best practices play a role in things like search engine rankings and customer trust. One common example of best practices for a website is using the HTTP/2 or HTTPS protocol. This involves transferring website data of a secure network with a verified SSL certificate. This provides security and increased trust with website visitors. Following web design best practices helps a business display trust and integrity while providing customers with a secure experience.
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, which is the process of increasing website traffic through authentic search results. The SEO metric measures things like:
- Title tag
- Meta tags
- Structured Data
- Anchor text for links
- Image alt tags
These metrics cover internal page structure rather than on-page content. By optimizing the structure of a website on-page content is more easily found by Google and the page is ranked higher in search results.
Having a website designed for SEO will maximize the online presence of a business. It increases the likeliness of content being shared and makes it easy for customers to find a local business over the competition.
Performance, accessibility, best practices, and SEO are some of the many success metrics used for web design. By implementing custom technical solutions for each client rather than using prebuilt templates from page builders like Squarespace or WordPress we are able to optimize all aspects of web development to provide a superior design inside and out. Contact us to improve your business website today!