You want your website to give off professionalism, but what does that actually mean? What does it entail for you to have a website that meets expectations and is professional? Is there a consensus among users as to what they think your website should look like and feel like in terms of usability for them to consider it to be professional?
The simple answer is yes; there is a consensus. And that’s because users want to be able to navigate a page that looks great and also has a response they are seeking. There are certainly some general guidelines you can follow to make your website to be perceived as being more ‘professional’.
Giving off an Image
Ideally, your design should indicate integrity and trust. People want to get the impression that your website, product, or business, are not fly-by-night but is firmly cemented in the market. This is particularly important in the days of businesses moving away from the traditional bricks-and-mortar setup and existing online.
Customers want a sense of security that your business is going to stick around and be able to provide follow-up customer service, not just flog something to then never be seen or heard again.
Choosing Your Style
How you design your website can have a significant impact as to how people perceive the products or services your business provides. It is best to avoid anything shiny or flashy, which gives off the wrong impression but stick to more subtle colour schemes including blue, grey, and browns. This may seem dull, but it’s a realistic choice, and the base colours can be spruced up by hints of green, red, and yellow to highlight where necessary, but should not dominate the design.
When designing your website, you must also take care to ensure that it reflects the brand or lifestyle choice you are attempting to convey. This is easier said than done, but, you can do this through clever choices as to the visual aspects of your websites and the values it represents. Thankfully, even a cheap website builder has several pre-designed themes to choose from that might just make or break the difference between a good, professional-looking website, and a bad, outdated, or tacky one.
You must choose your theme wisely, but remember, you don’t have to stick with it. You can try one style, and if you’re not receiving the results you need, then go ahead and try another style. It’s not a good idea to change your branding too often, though, but the point very much is that modern websites need constant updating to keep current. So it won’t hurt to keep your website looking fresh and new by tweaking some of the features every now and again.
One thing you can do to stay abreast of customers’ perceptions is to make a detailed analysis of what your audience expects to see on your website, and then see if the actualisation meets their expectation. In fact, this kind of market research is nothing new, and simply asking the opinions of your clientele is a good way to gauge what everyone else may be thinking.
It will certainly pay dividends to ask around and see if what your perception of a professional website matches what your target audience thinks. Then you go can ahead and make any necessary changes to theme, colours, or style.