Having an online presence is essential to your business. But with so many other companies already established on the internet, how can you make yours stand out in the crowd?
You can start with website branding. Proper website branding is one of the most effective ways to get your brand noticed and establish a name for your company on the net. And we’re gonna show you how to do it.
Below, we have the 9 best tips on how to set up your website branding for success. Boost your business with these website branding tips.
General Website Branding Rules
Here are the basic ideas to keep in mind for all aspects of branding websites.
1. Be the Public
It’s easy to forget you’re building your web presence for the public, not yourself. If you build your website for yourself, you’re the only one who’ll want to visit.
Throughout the web branding process, try to put yourself in your customer’s shoes. Think of the average web user: what they’ll search Google for, how they’ll find your site, what they’ll think when they get there, etc.
Or better yet, research. There are thousands of websites full of internet usage statistics from which to study data. You can also ask for personalized help and opinions from outside companies or customer surveys.
Furthermore, you must have a user-friendly website setup. A disorganized site will turn both visitors and search engines away.
You must have an intuitive, easy-to-navigate menu system on your website. Bar menus at the top, expandable menus in the corner, and mini sitemaps in the footer are the best.
You must also have a responsive website design that is viewable from all mobile and desktop platforms. If you don’t follow these are unbreakable web design rules, you won’t get visitors.
2. Be Clear
Just what is your brand about? What are you trying to say?
Make sure your message is clear. The obvious way to do this is to include these web design essentials.
Make an easy-to-find “About Us” page on your site with your clearly stated mission statement. Make sure this message is conveyed in all you do. Also, use this page to introduce notable corporate figures.
Finally, focus your whole website on a single call-to-action. Figure out the most important action you need your customers could take. Make every page on your site inspire this action.
3. Be Consistent
Your brand must be consistent across all platforms of reality. Just as your physical locations are uniformly and specifically branded, so should your online extension be.
Your public needs to see you as one entity. If they see you as a bunch of separate employees and personalities acting independently, your company appears disorganized. Or worse: people may even think your company is a fraud set up as a scam.
Your best tools for consistency are your brand voice and the visual branding tips further down.
4. Your Brand Voice
Does your brand have a particular personality? Hopefully, you’ve already chosen a voice for your brand that conveys your personal customer service attitude to your public.
If so, make this voice consistent across your website and all branded copy that your company posts anywhere. This makes your company appear as a single unit as if it’s one person. That’s a lot more friendly and personal than a bunch of disconnected voices chattering randomly.
If you haven’t chosen a voice, create one. If your company was one person, what would it sound like?
Is it a he or a she? Does it have a name? Is he/she funny or serious?
This brainstorming may even inspire you to create a visual or virtual mascot for your company. As a creative example, ask Windows 10’s virtual assistant, Cortana, what her favorite food is. She’ll answer, “I dream of one day getting to taste waffles.”
When can see your company as a character, use this as your brand’s voice. Post all copy using this voice. Then your public can get to know “you” personally.
5. Use Software
To really boost your branding efforts, make use of the tools available to you. Track what’s working in your web design and what isn’t with analytics, heat map tools and error checks.
A live chat feature or even a customer support bot will do wonders for customer satisfaction.
Here’s how to improve your website branding with a unique visual identity.
6. Hoist the Colors
The concept of color-brand-association is probably the oldest branding concept there is.
Ancient, rival tribes would face off wearing different color face paint. Lookouts identified inbound troops by the colors of their flags and uniforms. The colors alone told them to expect a message from allies or prepare for battle.
Your color scheme is the flag of your brand’s nation. When choosing your color scheme, imagine your “troops” marching out into the internet wearing those colors on their uniform.
What do the colors say about your brand? Are you aggressive or progressive? Are you a corporate machine or a friend?
These ideas are conveyed with one glance at your colors. Do some quality color psychology research before settling on your brand colors. Here’s an in-depth guide to choosing the right color scheme for your specific business.
Also, keep in mind that each color means different things to different cultures. If your company operates internationally, research and find a color combination that works in all your markets.
7. Your Jolly Roger
Your logo has the same power to invoke emotion that your color scheme has. Ruthless pirates have become historically famous using the power of logos. The flag they used to intimidate their targets established such a name for themselves that they went down in history!
Logos can do the same for your business.
But don’t overthink it. Remember, these jolly rogers were typically simple designs by uneducated outlaws. And yet, they perfectly conveyed the only two ideas that mattered: “We’re pirates and we’re captained by (insert famous pirate name here).”
This is exactly what your logo should do. It should tell viewers who you are and what you are to be known for.
Start by coming up with a single-sentence mission statement. Then try to convey that sentence in your logo symbol.
Also, compare the logos of other businesses in your field and the message they convey. Think about how you want your business to be like theirs and how you want it to be different.
Lastly, put your logo in the upper-left area of your website. That’s where logos go because that’s where people find them.
8. Branded Images
Lastly, don’t choose site images randomly. Even the images in your blog posts should follow the theme of your brand.
Do a Google image search within your site. What do the results look like?
Does it look like the images all came from the same place? Are they consistent with your color scheme, mission statement and voice?
Or do the results look random? In either case, this is the result visitors will see when they look at your site.
Whether using your own photos or stock images, choose only the ones that look like they came from your brand. Also, watermark your images with your logo in case the image gets shared. And give your image appropriate names so they’ll rank higher in search results.
9. Branded Products
Finally, nothing boosts your brand like branded products. Make products with your logo, color schemes, original artwork and mascots available on your site.
Offer free, branded gifts as incentives for signing up with your mailing list. Or sell them on your site. To learn what promo products can do for your brand, read more here.
Make Your Mark
Start using these website branding tips today to skyrocket your online impact!
For related content, try 6 Website Performance Metrics You Should Analyze.