5 Attributes That Define A World-Class Corporate Website In 2016
In a world hooked on social media, its easy to imagine that the corporate website has lost its relevance where businesses are concerned. Nothing could be further from the truth. Increasingly, the corporate website has become a key channel for brand building, sales generation, customer service and operational streamlining. Therefore, from this perspective, what constitutes a world-class corporate website in 2016? Here are the 5 attributes that matter the most:
Today, more than ever, a corporate website has to be designed to be mobile responsive. What this means is that it can be seamlessly rendered on desktop computers, mobile devices as well as tablets. Its also known as having one website for every screen. The need for a mobile responsive website has never been greater since April 2015 when Google launched its mobile-friendly search results whereby websites that not conform to this approach are penalized in search results if they fail to conform to the standard. Its also generally good practice that any modern corporate website is mobile responsive as the majority of consumers globally use mobile devices as their primary Internet device which ensures a great end-user experience.
A corporate website should be designed to drive specific actions where end-users are concerned. This can be anything from generating sales leads via online forms, social media shares or e-newsletter sign-ups. All of these actions can be classified as forms of conversions which are normally triggered though what are called ‘calls-to-action’ or CTAs. In order for a corporate website to be conversion optimized it must be designed from the bottom-up to achieve the designed actions that will lead to conversions that will make it add value to the business. Conversion optimization can involve website design, copy & structural and/or back-end improvements based on a data-driven approach.
Social media is increasingly the entry point for content discovery and consumption where users are concerned. This means that having a social media integrated corporate website is essential so that visitors can easily share it on their social media profiles. This is important since Google uses these ‘social signals’ as a key criterion in determining where websites are ranked in search engine results pages or SERPs for short. One of the ways that this is achieved is by having social media sharing buttons installed throughout a corporate website so that its super easy for visitors to share pages of interest on their social media profiles
It is often said that content is king when it comes to the Internet. This has never been truer when it comes to corporate websites. Indeed, website visitors could quite happily visit a poorly designed corporate website just because the content is of incredible value to them. Therefore, any decent corporate website MUST have content that is contextually relevant for its intended audience. This content should also be updated on a regular basis as Google uses quality content and the frequency it being updated as a major signal for search engine results pages (SERPs). The easiest way of ensuring content changes regularly is having a corporate blog as part of the corporate website which would serve up fresh and high quality content on a regular basis that is specifically designed to appeal to the target audience of the website, as well as Google’s algorithm(s).
In addition to having great content, the user experience (UX for short) of a corporate website has to be such that its not only visually compelling, but is also intuitive to use. User experience or UX is a term that is regularly used these days when defining not only how a digital product or service looks but also how it works. UX is essentially the intersection of design, technology and business all converging to deliver a digital offering that resonates with the end-user and meets business objectives as well. Therefore, it is essential that a corporate website incorporates UX practices so that it meets the needs of the intended target audience through various approaches and methodologies. Put simply, UX ensures that a corporate website ‘works’.