Is your website reaching out to – and engaging – prospective clients, industry peers and the most exciting crop of fresh talent? If not, it’s time for an upgrade, and there’s no better place to start than WordPress website design.
Business owners and organisations of all shapes and sizes have faced tough and challenging times. The last decade has, without doubt, taken its toll. And while many organisations weathered the unpredictable economic climate with predictable belt-tightening, others took control of their destiny and continued to promote their products and services online and offline. But, organisations choosing to sit things out might now be finding their brands have lost a little sparkle. A lacklustre online presence is often the first sign of underinvestment. This being the case, WordPress website design is the perfect remedy.
At the end of the day we all want to attract high-quality enquiries and applications from well-informed prospective clients, employees, donors and students. But, be honest, does your website show off your organisation at its attractive and personable best? Or, do you suspect that despite your best efforts, it’s failing to make an impression? You are not alone. Many websites are poor to average at best, and fail to provide enough information to help visitors make a choice. Let alone the much needed impetus to fill out a form, fire off an email or pick up the phone. But why are firms suffering this fate when WordPress website design ticks all the boxes, from a creative, functional and technical perspective?
Have you considered a WordPress website design solution? I’m singing the praises of WordPress because if I can use it, anyone can use it.
Colleges tend to be genuinely diverse institutions, so it can be a real challenge to pin down just one or two things that make them different. As branding in education is relatively new, there are no clear models to work from – existing commercially-derived models are only partly applicable.
The good news is, it’s never too late to make a good first impression. If you suspect visitors interacting with your brand in the digital sphere are left with an underwhelming impression, start the process of commission a website audit and redesign. And if your site is built on an archaic platform, probably dictated by a long department IT manage, prepare for a major upgrade. The technology behind content management platforms has evolved into some infinitely more user-friendly, so there’s no excuse for anything other than creating a positive impression. Both from a visitor and a publisher perspective. The WordPress website design platform has matured into the de-facto content management solution.
If your website design isn’t welcoming, exciting, inspiring and different, you will struggle to compete in an increasingly tough marketplace, where wage freezes and price hikes pose a continuous challenge. In this context there has clearly never been a more vital time to make sure that your website is hitting the mark and constantly evolving to meet new challenges.
WordPress website design provides an impressive online presence relatively quickly, and requires a relatively small capital investment. But, it could yield an impressive return by taking the following into account…
- Research your target audience carefully, and consider the best ways to attract their attention and talk their language. Your primary audience is important, but don’t forget audiences at secondary and tertiary levels. One size won’t fit all, but you don’t need to be radical. Subtle variations in layout and tone of voice can transform your website for a range of audiences. WordPress as a web design platform provides thousands of options for themes and templates.
- Identify your unique selling points and personality so that people feel you are offering something exciting and unique they can’t get elsewhere. Don’t just talk about yourself. Sell them the whole package and feature real people who actually interact with your brand every day. The WordPress web design solution provides opportunities for people interested in your company to interact through feedback forms.
- Grab peoples attention with a quality website design that is visually attractive and easy to use. Create a lasting impact with inspiring images. Draw them in and make them want to stay. If you want to go full-screen that’s not a problem.
- Looks are important, but content is king so make sure that text is crisp, concise and well-written. Make the content come alive by using statistics, quotes and interesting facts. And start as you mean to go on, resisting the temptation to add poorly written updates that dilute the professional image you have created. If in doubt, refer to your digital brand guidelines. And if you don’t have a set, ask your creative agency to produce one.
- Provide something new each time people visit so that they want to come back time and time again. A lively and frequently updated blog section, together with videos, virtual tours and audio clips are a great way to help people get a feel for your organisation. WordPress website design makes all of this possible at a fraction of the previous time and cost-investment.
- Ensure that content can be easily updated by staff – WordPress requires minimal technical training. This will enable you to add fresh content regularly and publish your latest information, to tie in with other marketing activities.
- Make sure that content loads quickly on mobile devices as nearly everyone uses a phone or tablet to connect to the internet. Remember not to forget the traditional desktop version of your website, as Google will penalise sites with poor load times.
- Ensure that you meet accessibility standards but create a good balance so that it doesn’t over compromise the design. If we choose WordPress as the CMS for your the next iteration of your website design, you can do so in the knowledge it’s compliant.
- Harness the power of social networking by making sure that your use to the features of WordPress website design to integrate seamlessly with social media channels like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
- Encourage feedback on a regular basis and use that feedback to make continuous improvements. Surveys and mystery visitors tasked to find certain pieces of information are just two ways of doing this.
- Identify what makes your organisation stand out by carrying out sector and good practice research. This will ensure that you are hitting your target audiences effectively and creating a positive rapport.
- Make sure that your WordPress website design fits in well with your overall marketing communications strategy, and that the ‘look & feel’ is consistent across all channels and all mediums. Where necessary, outsource website design and development, copywriting and photography to an external agency.
- Make sure that your marketing team, internal authors and other contributors update content in a way that maintains the professional integrity of your WordPress website design.
- And, last, but not least… As you now have a great website design, built on the worlds most popular content management platform, you’ll want to make sure the right people get to it through high quality SEO and content marketing!
If you enjoyed this article, you might enjoy these ones too:
– The definitive guide to WordPress website design
– Responsive WordPress themes: Making the right choice for your business