Monday, August 4, 2014

Navigating the Internet: 4 Tips Every Business Owner Should Know

If you’re a business owner like Alexander Bouri, you hopefully know about the importance of having a good web presence.  You’d think that almost every business in 2014 would have a website, but there are thousands of businesses that aren’t taking advantage of everything the Internet has to offer.   The E-Marketer, Barlow Researchers, U.S. Census Bureau, and Jupiter Research did a study on small businesses and their presence online – and in 2009, a mere five years ago, only 43% of small businesses had a website.  If you’re new to working online, creating and managing a website can seem intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be.  When you make your new website or hire someone to do it for you, remember to keep these things in mind:

Avoid making it flashy
When it comes to website design, sometimes less can be more.  A webpage that’s full of pictures, flashing links, and other visual features are very distracting to website users.  Websites with an abundance of flashy visuals can be very visually unappealing, and have the opposite visual affect you’re trying to have. Maintain a good balance between your written content, pictures, and empty background space to make your website easy to navigate and appealing to others.
Use simplify navigation
Is there anything more frustrating than trying to look at a website that doesn’t display correctly or has confusing navigation?  A lot of websites have a navigation bar at the top of each page so that users can easily find whatever page they need to look for.  Others make the navigation bar automatically scroll when the user scrolls down so that they can always have access to it.  Either way, make it as easy as possible for visitors to find what they need to avoid frustration and therefore keep them on the site longer. While you’re at it, don’t forget to add a search bar so that it’s easy to find exactly what they’re looking for.

Remember to update
You want to have a website so that people can easily learn about your business, but you also want to give them something that will keep bringing people back.  Make sure to update your website with news about the company, industry news, blog posts, and anything that people that frequent your business would find interesting.

Be social
Today, social media can make or break your business.  A funny tweet or a Facebook post about a sale can help give your business a lot of positive attention.  Make a Google+ page for businesses to boost your SEO standings, and see what people are saying about you on Yelp and other business review websites.

In a world where people are glued to their smart phones and tablets nearly 24 hours a day, it’s crazy to think that businesses don’t need a website or a web presence. By following the above tips, you can ensure your website is a major asset to your business.

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