From a design and marketing point of view having well structured website headers with a good user interface (UI) is going to impart a good user experience (UX). A fundamental facet for the user is going to be the header of your website and that at least should include your branding, clean navigation, contact details and possibly some calls to action. It should be a good point of reference for the users to reference those all important call to actions. If you run a small business it’s paramount.
Branding is important if you want to be remembered and therefore having a consistent colour palette and logo will reinforce recognition for the user. As well as having a home link in your navigation its worth using your logo as a backlink to your home page which users can click on if they want to go back to the home page. This will also add another internal link structure for search engine spiders – which is a good thing.
Popping a telephone number in there is also good from both a users perspective and from a seo perspective. If your target market is local then Google will match up local searches to local websites geographically. Google is clever enough to work out the location of a given business by the content. For example if your location is Cheltenham it makes sense to include the keywords ‘Cheltenham’ in the content. This is also the same for telephone numbers and area codes though printing 01242 is more confusing for geo-location than (01242) which is more specific.
Good clean and simple navigation is also key, don’t be tempted to throw all your pages and links into a single navigation bar. Treat navigation links as hubs for deeper related links in a hierarchy eg; Books > Food Books > Italian Cuisine > Pasta… etc. This is a great way of creating a tree like navigation system that search engine spiders can easily categorise and index information so the content of your website doesn’t get diluted. Using a breadcrumb for users will also create a useful user experience, if a user ends up at a dead end they can always navigate one step back and take a different route.
An additional bonus for self promotion is using some call to actions (CTAs). Things like ‘We’ll call you back’ or Social Media links, Email Us are specific call backs to engage and connect with users in a different way. Users coming to your website come at different times of the day so giving them the option to email you, a request a to call them back at a convenient time via a contact form is a great way to engage with them. If you have a Facebook page or Twitter account let them connect with you by having links to your social pages so they can tune in to other activities.
These suggestions won’t be ideal for all businesses but hopefully its food for thought. Feel free to leave your comments or any other suggestions in the comments below.