Thursday, May 31, 2012

Updating or creating a website?

If you are revamping your website, it can seem like an overwhelming task. The key is to break it down into manageable segments. Consider the design – are you going “custom” or using a design template? A custom design allows your company’s personality to shine through. It allows your branding elements of a logo, color palette and preferred typeface to convey your image in a professional manner. There is a place for template design websites – typically when you are starting out with only a few bucks to spend.
When developing content, set up a structure – also known as a wire frame or site architecture. What will appear on your landing page? How many main pages should you have and what subjects will appear on these master pages? Once you know the main subjects, parse those out into sub-pages with more detailed information. Figuring out the site organization is akin to doing a flow chart or organizational chart. It’s a matter of hierarchy – put your most important topics on main pages and branch out with sub pages.
What tabs will you need for the subject headings? Horizontal tabs are most commonly used. Vertical tabs have their place – typically when a website has loads of information.
Keep your information short with a click-on box for more content (See the samples on my website). The information seen before scrolling down is the most widely viewed. Many viewers won’t bother to scroll down unless they really like what they see.
Keep the copy short and snappy. Every word you use must carry its own weight. Edit mercilessly. Keep product or service features and benefits short but descriptive. Leave nothing to the viewer’s imagination. Spell out everything you want them to know. 
What’s the call to action? Typically to call or send in an e-mail inquiry. Also let viewers connect with you online through Twitter, Facebook, Linked In, etc. Give them multiple ways to get in touch with you and learn more about you and your products or services.
And if you’re looking for a good website copy writer who works well with web designers, give me a shout out. (Oh, I mean send me an e-mail or call.)