In today’s world, anybody can whip up a quick and dirty website with the endless tools that are available. However, if your future website is going to be the face of a brand or business, the results may be more than disappointing without the help of a professional. Below are 5 reasons why you should take your website seriously:

  1. Uniqueness

    By hiring a professional, you can ensure that you get a completely unique website. After all, your website acts as your business card, brochure, catalog, or all of the above. It is our job to make sure that your business stands out from the competition. We achieve this by creating custom design and functionality that caters to the requirements of your business.

    Have you ever heard the saying “You get what you pay for?” Just like anything else, it applies here! If you spend the extra money and treat your new website like the investment that it is, rather than a cost, you can build your brand exponentially. The last thing you want is for your new website to look exactly like several (or thousands) of other websites.

  2. Enhanced Usability

    Usability is something that should you should not overlook as it is one of the most (if not the most) important factors in the success of your website. A professional can help you develop content that is useful and easy to find while building credibility for your brand.

    Keep in mind that your users do not want to “work” to find what they are looking for, so the hierarchy and layout need to make sense. If your site is too difficult to navigate, most users will leave immediately.

    Users with Disabilities

    Web standards require your site to be accessible to everyone. Let’s not forget about those with visual and motor disabilities. Many amateur website “creators” tend to leave out important elements like alternate text for images. This creates two issues. At the least, it causes your code to be invalid. It also causes an accessibility issue for users that rely on screen readers to access your content. Without the “alt” text in the image tag, screen readers cannot describe the image to the user.

  3. Quality/Cleanliness of Code

    Semantics and Validation

    It isn’t difficult to learn the major HTML tags, but there is a challenge in learning how to use them correctly. Semantics is defined as the meaning of a word, phrase, sentence, or, in this case, website content. Each tag must properly describe the content within. Using the wrong tags to describe your content could hinder your SEO (Search Engine Optimization) efforts.

    Not only should your code be semantically correct, but it should also adhere to best practices of web standards. Validated code will guarantee that all tags are closed, nested properly and up-to-date.

    validator

    For more information about HTML validation, see Why Your Site’s HTML Should Be Standards Compliant.

    Code Commenting

    Commented code is a good sign of professional work and can be used for several different things. As comments can only be seen in the source code, developers can use them for documentation and debugging. They are also handy when updating another developer’s work.

    As a general rule of thumb, a developer should use the HTML comment tag to note the end of every major block of content. This helps to find things much easier, especially if nested tags are indented!

    <div id="content">
         <h1>This is the Main Content Area</h1>
         <p>Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Sed condimentum fringilla libero, a pulvinar metus viverra sed. Etiam non rutrum nulla, ut accumsan sem.</p>
    </div> <!--========== #content ==========-->

    Commenting should also be used in scripting and programming languages to describe what the code is doing. This way, future developers can easily figure out which snippets need to be edited if they are adding, removing, or optimizing functionality.

    jQuery(document).ready(function(){ // When the document is loaded, do the following:
         jQuery('.position-info, .media-info').hide(); // hide elements with class of "position-info" and "media-info"
         jQuery('.position-title, .media-title').addClass('closed'); // add class of "closed" to those elements
    
         jQuery('.position-title, .media-title').click(function(){ // when the elements are clicked, do the following:
              jQuery(this).toggleClass('open') // toggle class from "closed" to "open"
    	  jQuery(this).next().slideToggle(); // trigger "slideToggle" method on the very next element
         });
    });
  4. Browser Compatibility

    As you may know, there are a handful of major web browsers and many other smaller browsers to choose from. Unfortunately, they are not all created equal so browser testing is very important. Something that looks amazing in one browser could completely fail in another. Although most of the modern browsers display content similarly, you may still see some differences. Professional developers pay special attention to older versions of Internet Explorer as Microsoft is known to be way behind the times.

    browser logos

  5. Optimization

    Website optimization comes in all shapes and sizes. Your content should be optimized for several things including load speed, search engines, and conversions. Here are some things to think about:

    Images

    It’s true, pictures are worth a thousand words, so they are a great way to display information, product images, services, etc. However, if not optimized, your images could do more harm than good. A professional can optimize your images by lowering file size while maintaining quality. This alone, can drastically improve page-load times.

    image-optimization

    Search

    As a business, one of your major goals is to reach the top of search engines like Google. To achieve this goal, your site needs content that is relevant, engaging and useful.

    That aspect of it really has nothing to do with programming but it does bring up a good point. Many websites use JavaScript to provide custom functionality and/or bells and whistles. These can be great additions to your website if implemented correctly. In order for search engines to be able to crawl your content, it must be rendered when the page loads (this is where development comes in). Professionals can ensure that your content is crawlable by using SEO best practices during development.

    Conversions

    Another MAJOR goal of your website is to entice people to buy a product or service, download a brochure, or make a phone call. These are all considered to be conversions. A professional design and development team with CRO (Conversion Rate Optimization) experience can optimize your site to make it easier for users to find what they are looking for. In many cases, conversion optimization takes off where SEO leaves behind. Mounds of traffic is great, but not if your users do not convert. If your conversion rate is less than 3-5%, your site needs to be evaluated. The overall goal is to reduce friction, give users what they expect, and lead them to the finish line.

In conclusion, it may be difficult to choose a professional design and development team to assist in building your brand. Like web browsers, not all agencies are created equal. It is tough to find one that can develop a unique website with enhanced usability, beautiful code, and superior optimization all under one roof. Here at Web Talent, we are extremely proud to offer off all of these services. If you’re ready to take your new website seriously, call us today for a free quote! (800) 405-2947.