Most businesses have bad websites – that’s just a fact. The design is dated, the navigation is substandard, and there’s very little content. (And if there is any content, it’s thin, dated, and provides little-to-no value to the company’s audience). To put it mildly, the average business website is ineffective and serves as nothing more than a digital placeholder.

But if you study the most successful businesses in your industry, you’ll discover they overwhelmingly break out of this mold. They have websites that look good and function smoothly. And this isn’t a coincidence.

A well-designed, perfectly optimized website has the ability to take an average business and make it a great one. Want to find out more about how you can join the fold? You’ll need to give your website a remodel. Here’s where we recommend starting:

Identify Your Goals

What are your goals for your website? If you can’t answer this question immediately, you’re not where you need to be. A successful website has purpose behind it. And until you identify this purpose, it’s impossible to achieve meaningful results.

Every company has different goals. Some see their website as a branding tool. Some companies use it as an educational resource for teaching and engaging prospects. Other companies sell directly through their website. Don’t try to copy and paste another company’s goals into your plans. Drill down into the DNA of your business and determine precisely how your website should be functioning in order to move your business forward.

Find Your Voice

Every design and copywriting decision needs to be filtered through branding or style guidelines. Your company needs a very specific voice and the more detailed you are with it, the more cohesive your website will be when it reaches the final stages of completion.

When clarifying your voice, think of your brand as a person. What personality does it have? What’s its history? What goals does it have for the future? These are the questions you need to tap into.

Hire a Web Design Company

There are lots of little things that you can do to improve your website, but you aren’t a professional web designer or developer. Your time is much better spent focusing on your company’s core tasks and responsibilities. Consider hiring a web design company to tackle your website redesign.

A good web design company will do more than just redesign your site so that it looks aesthetically pleasing. They’ll study your brand, ask about your goals, and ensure every aspect of the design is in perfect alignment with the direction you’re going.

Improve SEO

Website design and SEO go hand in hand. A good web design company will emphasize the technical aspects of SEO as much as the creative side of design. For best results and maximum value, consider hiring a company that is skilled in both design and SEO.

Reduce Friction

SEO is important, but it’s not the only element in the equation. You have to engage people once you have them on site.

As one Long Island web design company puts it, “Even if your website ranks higher than your competitors’ on the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs), if visitors have difficulty finding what they came for fast, they’ll leave your site and go elsewhere.”

In other words, you must reduce friction as much as possible. This includes friction involved in search and navigation, as well as anything that slows down the checkout process (for ecommerce websites).

Pump Out Quality Content

Content is king. Your website needs an arsenal of high-quality content if it’s going to climb the search rankings, engage visitors, and move people through the conversion funnel from awareness to action.

The key word here is “quality,” not quantity. You’re much better off publishing a monthly 2,500-word evergreen topic that offers tangible value to your audience than a flimsy 500-word self-promotional post every two days. Publish quality content and they will come!

Focus on Incremental Gains

Overhauling an underperforming website and turning it into a traffic generating, lead producing machine isn’t easy. It takes time and execution. You shouldn’t anticipate seeing results overnight. Instead, focus on the incremental gains.

If you focus on improving your website by 1 percent every day, your website will improve by 37-times over the course of a year. Zero in on what matters most and put one proverbial foot in front of the other. When you look up in a few weeks or months, you’ll see the results!