Are you rebuilding your website and wondering whether the graphic design and layout of the website matter enough to pay a professional?
It’s very likely that you believe a professional looking website is important, but you may not be convinced it’s worth paying for.
Our aim is not to tell you what to do, but rather help pull together helpful statistics about web design, so you can make an informed decision.
If you are just looking for the most important design elements for your website, scroll down to the second section.
Redesigning a website for your business is likely not a task you are looking forward to. You most likely know it’s necessary to get right, though. This article highlights the importance of design, and shares some of the most important design elements you should implement into your website.
5 statistics proving web design matters for small businesses
1. 75% of a company’s credibility is based on their website design.
At a basic level, every legitimate business would like for it to be very clear to their potential customers that they are trustworthy.
You have very likely spent years building a credible business that aims to serve a local community. Hiring great staff, investing in good quality products, providing a comfortable and convenient service.
So why would you undermine that hard-earned reputation with a poorly designed website?
The design of your website is so important to your new customers, that people will almost immediately disregard your company if your website is not well-designed and up to date.
Think about the last time you went to visit a website of a new business or brand. One that you hadn’t heard of yet. If the website looked like it was last updated in 2012, and you’re like most people, you immediately left their website and looked for an alternative business.
It’s unfortunate that consumers only give a few seconds to judge your credibility, but at least we know this information.
Whether you hire someone to design and maintain your website or do it yourself, be sure that your design looks professional.
2. 73% of users say that content “must display well” on the device they are viewing it on.
Similar to the previous point about the actual design of your website, the majority of consumers expect your website to work on all devices.
If they are using a phone, it needs to look great on a phone. For those who are on a tablet, your website needs to be responsive and look great on the tablet.
The common problem for older websites, or non-responsive websites is that users find it difficult and awkward to navigate the pages and find what they are looking for.
In short, it’s an inconvenience to them! No business is trying to inconvenience their customers, but many don’t realize that their website is actually hard for customers to use. It simply must display well on whatever device they are using.
3. 66% of viewers prefer something to be beautifully designed vs simple
There is certainly value to simplicity, especially in a world that is seemingly becoming more complex by the day, but don’t over do it by making your website too simple.
This is a common problem with DIY website builders. There are most certainly themes that are beautifully designed out there, but these themed templates may not make sense for your business.
66% of your customers would prefer to see a company website that was designed well and accentuates your products, services, and brand.
4. 39% of users will stop engaging if your content won’t load quickly
While not directly related to visual design, your website’s load time has a clear impact on your website’s success.
39% may not seem like a lot, when seeing other statistics that represent over 60% of your website visitors, but what if your saw your revenue increase by 39%? That would be massive!
If your website isn’t loading practically instantly, people will leave and go elsewhere. In general, you should ensure that your website loads on any device, for the first time (i.e. not cached), in 2 seconds or less. Google has said that is the minimum load time acceptable for ecommerce sites.
A good Content Delivery Network, or CDN, can help with this, but you also need to optimize code, and keep image sizes and other “heavy” features to a minimum.
5. 38% will stop engaging if content is too long or poorly laid out on a page.
Having a well designed website, that is strategically targeting your audience, can help to limit the amount of content on any one page.
Your customers are most likely on your website looking for a very specific piece of information, so you’ll want to communicate clearly and concisely.
Having your content laid out thoughtfully and strategically on your website is intuitive to most businesses, but some may think that having a high volume of content on each and every page is best practice for SEO.
Not necessarily. Of course, long form blog posts play an important role in improving your Search Engine Optimization, but having a thorough blog post that is 1500+ words, doesn’t mean that every page needs lengthy content.
At the end of the day, you want each page to be viewed through your customer’s viewpoint, and crafted to meet their unique needs.
Important design elements for every small business website:
If you’ve gotten this far, hopefully you agree that the design of your website matters. Great, but what are the various design elements you should consider when redesigning your website?
The list below is not in order of importance since we feel every website should include each of these. This list comes directly from the department of Health and Human Services’, who have a team working on improving user experience (UX) across the web.
- Responsive design
- Clear Call To Actions (CTAs)
- Clear navigational structure
- Helpful and thorough answers Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
- Professional design (“clean” and uncluttered)
- No use of unsolicited pop-up windows
- Clear overall objectives for users
- Helpful comparisons of potential options and products
If you don’t know how to ensure that your website’s design checks all the boxes, we recommend you consider hiring a professional to help. We’re here to help, if you don’t already have a website designer.