Make a Good First Impression with Your Website

Your website operates similarly to a storefront. It’s the number one thing your audiences see when they search for you, and first impressions do matter. So, how would you take care of your readers – potential lifeblood patrons – who show interest in your work? Would your ‘storefront’ be easy or difficult to find? Are the address and signage noticeable? Are the mission and contact information plainly presented, or not? Evaluate the front door. Do you have to move through six knobs and twelve locks before reaching the goods? What’s the interior like?? Is it a disorderly fire hazard, or is it quite easy to move through? Is there loud music blaring? Are the furniture and fixtures faulty? Is it dust-covered? Does it appear to be a construction project rather than a home for your business? You get the picture.

Luckily, an individual need not work more to get a website done right. Rather, less. Contrary to the concerns of most newbies and the dreadful suggestions of some designers, your website needn’t be fancy – at all. Actually, at the beginning it’s way better if it isn’t. Especially if you lack money for a recommended and capable designer. Adhering to the tenets of Presentation Zen, one should employ restraint when considering the style and functionality of a website. Just because you can easily do something, doesn’t mean you should. Often, many people are overwhelmed by all the exciting opportunities as well as the need to appear “professional.” Unfortunately, many see awful results, often a hybrid between a rummage sale and a nightclub-themed college dorm room.


Yahoo vs. Google
Be sure readers know swiftly where to go to discover the five W’s of your venture, and How they can get involved. To better explain this notion, pay attention to the clear dissimilarities between Yahoo’s search page and Google’s. And if for some reason your particular tastes lead you to favor Yahoo’s, remember which of these brands is triumphing in progress and innovation.

Myspace vs. Facebook
In addition, consider the homepages of social networks, Myspace and Facebook. The former is an utter visual assault with an overload of links, images, and ads. And the latter, straightforward and not hard to figure out. Just as before, bear in mind which resonates better and with a lot more people. And is for that reason, trailblazing.

DOs and DON’Ts
Here are some basic suggestions to help you as you start building and/or making changes to your website.

– DON’T hide important facts more than two clicks deep. Readers would rather abandon ship than interpret difficult site navigation.
– DON’T have a “click to enter” homepage. It’s just an additional undesirable barrier between you and your guest.
– DON’T have an animated intro. They take too long to load and are never worth the wait – ever.
– DON’T have any auto-play tunes. It’s unnerving and sort of inconsiderate (consider somebody who has several windows open at work, trying to determine which obnoxious page is generating that noise).

– DO keep it simple and quick to move through. Include a smaller number of tabs in your menu, focusing especially on contact information, “about” section, work samples, offerings and testimonials.
– DO include time-sensitive content like functions and special campaigns on the homepage, immediately visible, or “above the fold.” Include important links for more info and purchasing.
– DO update your pages and links. Broken links, incomplete or empty pages, and significantly out-of-date information all imply lousy customer service.
– DO enlist the expertise of a writer to help you with the vital verbiage for your site. A minimalist approach to building your website makes it possible for your work to be especially highlighted by effectual wording. And keep in mind, hiring a writer doesn’t need to be expensive. This kind of work offers great opportunities for professional development for artists.

ADDITIONAL TIP: You may also assess your site by visiting WebSiteGrader. You’ll receive a ranking plus an abundance of free valuable tips (The email field on the site is optional, by the way). It’s kind of splendid.

Best wishes streamlining your website for success! And remember, with regards to design – and a lot of things really – it’s better to be simple and effective than showy and inept. Forgo the bells and whistles and concentrate on content in order to make your website work.

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