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Website Essentials for a Lasting Impression

Your website has one chance to make a good impression, don’t waste it.

Imagine you are thinking of hiring a company and when you arrive to check them out in person you struggle to open the gate before tripping over a rusty kid’s trike that has been left on the footpath. The paint is peeling on the door surrounds, the doorbell is broken, and when you peer through the cloudy sidelight into the hallway, all you can see is dust, clutter, and old boxes piled up to the ceiling.

Would you hang around to see what they’re selling? Or would you cut your losses, retreat quietly down the overgrown path, and pop into the company just down the road, with its appealing signage and immaculate walkway?

The landing page on your website is the virtual front door to your business, and potential clients are going to feel far more comfortable stepping inside if you’ve gone to the effort to make a good impression.

Clarity is key

The most important hallmark of an effective website is clarity and ease of use. Gone is the kaleidoscope of jumbled graphics that designers used to justify their existence 15 years ago. Modern web design is sleek, uncluttered and most importantly, user-friendly, with just the right amount of white space, graphics, colour, and text.

Prioritise simplicity over creativity.

Your font should be crisp and legible, and it should help to convey a particular tone (there’s a reason there are more than 200,000 fonts in existence!). Avoid using more than three different typefaces on your site and be careful that your text isn’t getting swallowed up by a dark background.

A picture might be worth a thousand words, but copy matters.

You might want to think about hiring a professional copywriter for your website text. Deep down we all like to think that we’re pretty gifted in the literacy department, but the number of websites that abound with clunky, amateurish writing would suggest otherwise.

If you do decide to go it alone, proofread, proofread, and proofread again. Interesting is good, overly wordy is not. It goes without saying that you need to write for your audience; a casual, jokey tone isn’t suitable for a funeral home, and formal writing won’t grab the attention of a teenager searching for the latest brand of hair accessories.

Your navigation pane is the heart of your website.

Stunning graphics and pithy copy can go some way toward disguising the fact that your site is hard to navigate, but eventually, viewers will tire of trying to find their way around and leave. A good navigation pane should be so easy to find, it practically jumps off the screen, and the wording on the menu should be clear and concise (on a side note, try to minimise the number of different pages users have to click through, not everyone has time to browse!).

Stock photos mean nothing

If your company couldn’t go to the effort of taking photos for its website, where else is it going to cut corners? Professional photographers see interesting angles that laymen don’t, they know how to correctly frame the subject, how to light the scene, which colours photograph the best, and the list is endless. In a world of AI-generated fake news, authenticity is everything, and a professional shoot is a sound investment that might not cost as much as you would think.

All starting to sound too hard? Call Pinnacle today.

At Pinnacle&Co., we take the headache out of web design. Phillippa and her team will work with you from concept to completion and beyond, and the combined skills of our designers, photographers and writers will ensure that your virtual front door is warm, welcoming, and always open for business.