By Tom Barnes
Website Modifications Executive
New research, carried out by web design and marketing agency, Digimax, has given us some insight as to what small businesses prioritise when building their websites.
It provides an interesting view into small business function and serves to highlight some of the greater faults in the current landscape that new businesses should consider when designing their websites.
The survey revealed that a large portion of small businesses focus on their website being visually appealing over contextually informative to the end user, preferring to focus on traffic rather than sales.
50% of discussion regarding functionality was focused on development of aesthetics, layout and imagery, with less than 40% focused on actual content.
In total, less than 10% of clients focus on conversion and sales, with only 3% focusing on branding. The survey seems to show the current landscape of small business web design as being ‘as wide an ocean, but shallow as a puddle.’ With an overwhelming majority of the design process and budget being spent on flashy graphics.
The process shines a light on small businesses and the area they exist within. Eager to make a good first impression in an extremely competitive industry, but misallocation of resources often leading to problems, lending credence to that famous ‘8 out of 10 small businesses fail’ statistic that’s been echoed for years.
When 91% of small businesses say that making money is an afterthought in the design process, it highlights a pitfall that many start-ups fail to avoid.
Shaz Memon, Creative Director at Digimax, had this to say on the issue: “Businesses can often be lead down a path which hasn’t been crafted with clear actionable objectives which are the key to the success of their online marketing strategy.”
“Having a marketing website is almost pointless if it is not presenting your company with the opportunity to convert visitors to customers effectively.”
Tips when it comes to web design
- Plan your user flow effectively and consider every page a potential landing page.
- Design layout and functions around content, not the other way around.
- Employ an effective SEO strategy to make sure your site ranks high with search engines, like Google and Bing.
Striking a balance between content, functionality and design is key when creating a website. A website can look as professional as possible, but without the relevant content, a small business will struggle to convert visitors to customers.