I really like some of the work of Gene Simmons and Ace Frehley of Kiss. Their on-stage antics, pyrothenics and smoking guitars make their audiences roar for more! But this post isnt about music, its abouth the other KISS that your dad probably quoted more than once, Keep It Simple, Stupid.
This advice is especially important when it comes to one of the most valuable sales tools in your arsenal, your companys website. Unfortunately, too many firms forget that simple and elegant is almost always better than complex, cluttered and hard to navigate. One of the best ways to get an unbiased opinion about the look, feel, and content relevancy of your firms site is to ask a high school student to spend ten minutes browsing it. Unless your world is highly technical they should be able to describe your business and market in fairly specific terms. If they cant, your site needs a refresh! If thats you, consider these 2 goals before you start the rebuilding process.
Make Your Site Easy to Navigate
Many of the we talk to have websites that are extremely complicated to navigate. Dont make your prospects to work to find the information they need. If they cant get to the information area they need in 3 clicks or less they will probably bounce from your site to a competitor. Take the time to group your information logically and try to lead with the most often searched for product or service.
I personally feel that it also helps to keep the copy conversational, too many buzzwords and industry jargon can be a turn-off, so put yourself in the shoes of your vistors as you develop copy.
Dont Forget SEO
I know it seems like common sense, but to have an effective site you need to really nail the keywords that people might search on when looking to solve a problem you can address. The challenge is that keywords are constantly morphing and changing. If you do a key word assessment but wait six months to build and launch a new site some of the key words may no longer bring the search results you need. Its a good idea to review your site keywords at least twice a year. Its also a good idea to keep tabs on how your top competitors are using key words on their site as they may actually be creating unique keyword phrases based on the content they are building and distributing to their networks.
The actual building of a website may take a rocket scientist but developing a simple design and feel does not. Take the time to make sure you are not just filling your pages with endless text and gobbldygook. Reducing site complexity can assure your web vistors of a satisfying browsing experience, take the time to make it KISS.