Last week I covered some of the basic strategic questions you need to answer for yourself before putting together a web site. This week, I’ll talk about making your web site usable. If you have a large web site, it’s very likely that most folks who come to it will never see more than a couple of pages. It’s essential that your customers find the information they need.
To start, take out a piece of paper and jot down a list of what information you’d like to include on your site. Minimally, you need some of your images, and contact information, but depending on your business and how you hope to use your web site as part of your business (as we described last week), you may want to include: news, reviews, perhaps a blog or links to other social networking sites, and/or a biography that explains who you are, what you do and why. Don’t include an item on this list until you have a clear understanding of how it fits into your business. For example: “If a customer wants to place an order, they’ll need to contact me, so I’ll give them contact information.” (more…)