On creating a professional website, the spread of the Internet across the globe and easy availability of information – has forced many companies to revamp their websites in line with the needs of prospective customers using the latest in tools and technology.

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Since majority of customers today use search engines to find products and services, before actually picking up the telephone, it is imperative, that your website provides all the required information in a clear and crisp manner. Some of the important aspects of a professional website are listed below.

  1. No flashy intros or heavy animations

This is a strict no-no for today’s websites. You cannot afford to make a customer wait and show him a flash animation that takes ages to actually load – even before he has actually visited your website home page.

  1. Key Product/Service related information on your homepage

This is a very important aspect which is often missed by so many website owners. Most of the website home pages are made up of flash banners and followed by a half page write-up about the company typically called ‘About Us’. The fact of the matter is that a customer would be interested to know more about the company – if he is actually interested in buying your product. So give him the key information of your products and services, with prices and specify If any – right on the main page.

  1. Contact Information on key web pages

Many websites put up contact numbers only in their ‘Contact Us’ pages. And in certain sites, contact information would only be an enquiry form. How many of us, would buy from a shady shop in a narrow by lane with no business registration or with no permanent address. The same goes with your customers. They want to know where you are located and how they could reach you either by Phone/Fax or Email. This information needs to be displayed on your home page, product catalogue pages, service/support pages and most importantly the ‘Contact Us’ page.

  1. Website copy

Why is website copy (content) important? – It converts more sales – period. Well written content on your website makes people learn, react and prompts them to buy your products. It becomes more important to avoid typos (spelling mistakes) and grammatical errors which can scare away your customers.

  1. Easy Navigation

Customers need to find information on your website or they will leave – so it is important, that you give them a clean navigational structure – that is easy to use. Using complex JavaScript menus – that ‘drop-down’ to multiple levels or are not very user friendly can easily turn-off prospective customers.

  1. Dead Links/ Broken Links

Nothing is more aggravating to a potential customer than to visit your website and find broken or dead links. A website with many inner pages usually runs into this kind of a problem, when the web designer forgets to check page links within a site. If you don’t have content in a particular page, ask your web designer not to link that page (even an under construction message is a bad idea), you can always come back and fill in some content, and link up that page with the rest of your site. There are many online tools now available, that can sniff out dead links, and avoid a potential embarrassing ‘Page cannot be displayed’ situation to your customers.

  1. A Good Web host

What’s the point in having a fantastic site, but does not show up when it is most required – thanks to your neighbourhood web host – who is closed for lunch along with his server. Do some research – before buying your domain name and web hosting space. Find a web host who can vouch to keep your website live with minimum downtime, and is reachable when ever your website goes offline.

Blog written by: Ravi S. Jain (Director – Walk in Academy)