What makes a site great versus just “good”?
This, of course, can be very subjective as there are many different definitions of what “looks good”. Sometimes websites are judged either good, great or poor entirely on how they look. But, a website is more than just a pretty set of pages on the internet. A website is a delivery method for information, products and services.
A website can be simple looking but because of how it’s marketed and it’s underlying structure, it could have excellent search engine ranking. One might look at a site like this and say it’s not that great a site but in terms of being found and showing up in the first page or two for keyword searches in the major search engines, this site could be fantastic!
Because a website’s information, products and services need to be found online among hundreds, if not thousands, of similar businesses much of what makes a website great will be “behind” the pretty looks.
However, if a website is visually unpleasant according to most peoples’ standards, then although the website is easily found online, it may not capture the attention and pocketbooks of all those potential customers. One thing I have found to be a death sentence to any website, even the ones that are heavily marketed, is an amateurish look (like something a preschool child would design) with bad, missing or ILLOGICAL navigation! Once viewer frustration sets in they bounce right off your page and on to somewhere else.
Making your website attractive involves either a background in graphics or art, a really good sense of style and taste or knowing someone with these abilities. It also helps if you are familiar with software programs like Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator.
Making your website rank well in search engines involves some of these factors:
- a structurally sound website
- search engine optimization
- indexing with major search engines
- up-to-date XML sitemaps
- on- and offline marketing
Once your website is found, keeping a potential customer on your site to make a purchase, use your services or view your information, involves your website being:
- easy to navigate
- able to deliver the information it promises
- easy to use
- easy for customers to contact you
- being professional looking and sounding to assure customers of your legitimacy
If all of the above factors are taken into consideration when building a website and are practiced or employed to the best of the web developers and clients ability, then one should end up with a website that is truly GREAT!