The Blog.

10 things your website should have

Author:
Dave Meier
Category:
Web Design
Date:
May 15, 2012

1. Javascript Instead of Flash

With Apple’s iPhone and iPad not supporting Flash, websites built on Flash will simply not show on these devices and with over 73 million iPhones and 67 million iPads out there, that’s a lot of people who won’t be able to see your website. Javascript is capable of producing the same effects as Flash and has a much wider level of support across all platforms. Flash can also be negative from an SEO point of view.

2. HTML5

HTML5 is the future of the internet. All the big players like Google, Facebook and Twitter are using HTML5. It is compatible with modern mobile devices (which will take the reigns as the dominant platform for viewing websites) and it makes creating web apps very easy. It will also become beneficial from an SEO point of view in the future because of how the structure works and how it helps Google better understand your content.

3. Well Structured Content

Content, truly, is king. Well structured content entices people viewing your website to read more. Make your site easy to read and enjoyable. When people visit a website they have little patience for sales jargon and spiel. Be honest, upfront and show you know your stuff.

4. Sitemap

Google and other search engines index websites on a regular basis. This indexing process collects important data from your website such as how many pages your website has, how often they’re updated, the importance of each page, etc. A sitemap is like a map of all the pages on your website. This makes Google’s job easier when it has to index your website.

5. Blog

A blog is a great way to communicate with your visitors. By regularly posting blogs or articles you demonstrate your knowledge and expertise. It can also show the personality of the people and the company. This allows people to get a feel for who they may deal with in the future. People buy from people.

6. Social Network links

Facebook and Twitter provide enormous benefits to any business or personal website. You can link your site to Facebook and Twitter by placing the relevant buttons on your website. For example: by placing a Facebook ‘Like’ button or comment section on your website you generate activity on your website and Facebook simultaneously. If someone clicks the Like button this will be broadcast to their friends on Facebook too, this is like a recommendation from them to their friends.

7. 404 Page

A 404 page is the default page that shows up when the actual page does not exist or there was an error in the address. For people familiar with computers it’s easy to go back to the previous page, but for others you may have just lost a potential customer. By providing a custom 404 page, you can explain the error to them in simple language and offer them some options on what they can do next. You can include a link back to your home page, search box, maybe even a contact form for them to report this error to you.

8. Contact Form

By providing a contact form, all the visitor has to do is type into a few blank boxes and the information will be sent straight to your email account.

9. Google Map

If customers come to your premises then a map with directions to your location will help them find you easily.

10. Page Load Speed

People have much less patience online than in person. The average person will leave your site if they have to wait more than 3-4 seconds for it to load. You can also lose an additional 20% of visitors for every second after that. Having a site built in HTML5 with image sizes kept low will help to improve page load speeds. The main culprit of slow load speeds is Shared Hosting.