Six tips for drastically improving the look, and effectiveness, of your website

1. No Color Pollution! – Your site should not have more than three primary colors, as too much color can be distracting to a user. Make sure the colors match and complement each other. I also highly recommend using black text against a white background as they contrast the best and make it easy for your user to read your content.

2. Important Information above the Fold – When someone gets to your site, what they see is “above the fold.” What they have to scroll to see is “below the fold” and the chance they will see that information decreases greatly. Put your most important information- phone number, directions to your store, the “buy now” button, or whatever it is – so that no matter what a user’s screen size is, the important information resides high enough to be above the fold, obvious to see.

3. Link Clarity – People don’t click on links without knowing exactly where they are going. So make your links so clear, so obvious, that when someone clicks on them, they have no doubt as to where they’re going. If it’s a link to a map to your store and directions, then call it “Store Directions” or “Maps and Directions.”

4. Different Page Titles – If you’ve read my book, eBoot Camp, you know page titles show up as the blue link in Google and can determine whether someone chooses your site or someone else’s when doing a Google search. By having a different title tag for each of your web pages, you help people get the exact page they are looking for right from Google! For example, if you have a page for a specific product and title the page with that product name, when someone searches for that product on Google, your site can show up with the name of that product and a link directly to that page. That’s how sales are made!

5. Incorporate Social Media Tools – As marketers (which you all are), it’s your job to help surfers of your site connect with you so they can stay updated on your products and services. They may not be interested in buying today, but they might be down the road. Social media tools like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn make it easy for us to stay connected with our customers and soon-to-be-customers. So make sure to give people an easy way to become connected with you on one, or all of these sites. Effective use of the tools is detailed in eBoot Camp University.

6. Use an Opt-in Box – The value of an opt-in box is huge! Don’t let ANYONE leave your site without offering you their contact info. That way, you can stay in touch with them for life! (Or until they opt-out.) Put boxes on your homepage and ask for users name and e-mail, and any other information that is necessary for your business. Give them something of value, like an article, or white paper, in return for their contact info. E-mail the article to them so they are assured of giving you their primary e-mail address. Use a tool like Constant Contact to stay in touch with your new connections and help them keep your products and services on the top of their minds!

These tips will help draw the attention of your visitors and the search engines to your most important information. Now get out there and take action!