Why is a website even that important?
Following the trend of businesses going digital in the last decades has increased the necessity and importance for organisations to invest time and resources into the development of a professional website.
The question remains why a website is so incredibly important to companies. After all, they may simply stick to a web presence on social media platforms by maintaining a Facebook or Instagram page.
According to Facebook statistics on Statista, the social media platform had 2.27 billion monthly active users in the last quarter, i.e. Q3 2018. According to Statista, Instagram had 1 billion monthly active users as of June this year. These are some pretty impressive numbers, therefore why do organisations still struggle with designing and building websites? It turns out, there are in fact a number of reasons.
The benefits of a professional business website
Unlike a social media business page, your website is your main communication channel with your prospects and actual customers, leaving it fully up to you how you use it to communicate. Platforms will specify certain guidelines and rules of conduct as well as predefined features that allow you to communicate in restricted ways. Your website belongs to you, you carry responsibility, hence, you decide how it is used. Customer communication possibilities are endless, ranging from chats, forums, ticket systems, marketing campaigns, emails, surveys, phone contact, content in the shape of whitepapers and case studies and much more.
In today's digitised world, the majority of online shoppers conduct searches and draw comparisons before purchasing products or booking services. In addition, the higher the investment in a product or service, the more extensive this research phase tends to become. It is thus utmost important to provide a website that is and remains greatly optimised for search engines to ensure that your pages will rank high on the search engine results page when somebody is looking for what you have to offer. When it comes to search engine optimisation, you have much more possibilities and exposure when ranking with your own website as opposed to business pages on platforms.
Your own website gives you full control over design, functions and content while lowering your dependence in terms of vulnerabilities and instabilities on other platforms. Full customisation and personalisation with regard to branding and website structure are great ways to underline your professionalism and company mission.
Any website functions imaginable are possible with the appropriate code and can be implemented at your own preference and initiative. This gives you great power and flexibility to create areas of your site and if necessary, redesign whenever you want.
Two of the most crucial factors for winning new customers and retaining existing customers are trust and credibility. To ensure you are conveying a trustworthy and credible image outward, you require a professional, transparent and coherent website as it is usually the first point of contact a prospect makes with your business and brand. You will then become a part of people’s brand awareness and if you can subsequently triumph with a great product or service experience to converted visitors, you will have a shot at becoming the top-of-mind awareness brand.
A website is a never done
Once your website has been set up and is live, it’s important to be aware that it will never be fully completed. There is always work to do, there are always changes to be implemented regarding the optimisation for search engine indexing as well as for facilitating usability and improving user experience.
Boosting your search engine rank can be studied and applied by going through endless literature and content on search engine optimisation (SEO). However, making your website easier to humanly navigate and access is a trickier endeavour. To truly understand how your visitors feel about the experience on your website, you will need to ask them first-hand. Our best suggestion? Run a website feedback survey on a frequent basis and get results about your website over time to identify weak points and determine the effectiveness of your implemented changes.
We also have a great template you may use which we will walk you through in this article.
Setting up a website feedback survey
There are several aspects of a website that need to be taken into consideration when considering its impact on visitors and customers, such as comprehensibility, aesthetics and navigation ease.
We have incorporated all these vital aspects into our website feedback survey template to ensure you may receive the well-rounded feedback necessary to improve your website.
- "How often do you visit our website?": this question aims at getting more data on the frequency of a person's website visits to determine the degree of familiarity with your page. The more frequently someone visits your website, usually the better these people know what it has to offer due to more and oftentimes longer page sessions.
- "How well do you rate the following aspects of our website?": this array question provides respondent feedback on the quality of many website essentials such as design, search function, navigation, content and more. This will give you an idea of which parts or functions are rated poorly and require some attention.
- "How easy was it for you to find what you were looking for on the website?": this question in combination with its follow-up question ("In the end, did you find what you were looking for?") help you find out about what visitors think of the website navigation. The easier and more intuitive your website navigation, the easier it is for people to find what they are looking for.
- "How easy was it for you to understand the information on our website?": content comprehensibility is the central concept measured with this question. If you cannot properly convey your message to website visitors, they will not convert to customers and simply disappear, probably without ever returning.
Scoring high on all these questions will boost your website visitor experience and increase your sales, possibly even induce high-quality word-of-mouth potential. If you are offering a product or service that truly adds value to peoples' lives, it’s that simple: an amazing website experience will lead to substantial and long-lasting business growth.
LimeSurvey offers a Website Feedback Survey Template which includes the aforementioned questions. Since it's a template, it is fully editable and serves as a general survey framework.
It is available for free in our Professional Basic, Expert and Enterprise packages as well as Premium 3 months, 6 months and 12 months packages.
Feel free to give it a try and get feedback on your website.