A site layout needs to start the content with a clean header that states your companies name, logo, and purpose. Then the site has to perform the same tasks as a brick and mortar store:
- Getting the attention of the visitor.
- Keeping the attraction of the visitor.
- Fix their attention on the information that can lead them to the desired result.
- Move your customer to action.
- The content layout of your site,
- How your catalog, if you have one, is presented,
- How your shopping cart, order processing and payment options are integrated ~
- Are all basic to your content and site layout.
In addition, they can be complex when laying out the content for your site. But, they all relate to your site’s success.
The most important aspects of content and layout is to create a site that:
- Conforms to your customer’s expectations~
- Answers their questions~
- Provides their wants and demands~
To accomplish this, you must know your customer. You need to be able to anticipate their wants, their questions and their needs.
You must be concerned both about the content of your site as well as the layout of the administrative details. How friendly and easy to use your site is will influence customer satisfaction and loyalty of your visitors.
Here are some points to consider in your layout:
The site must be easy to navigate. The buttons, if you have them, must be visible and easy to read. When your visitor first sees your site, they must understand immediately where they are and how to move around.
If you have different product lines, they must be categorized in the navigation buttons so the visitor can easily find the subject of their search.
Never frustrate your visitor with content that is not relevant to the site theme. Make your content educate your visitor. Keep the style short, clear, and focused. This will provide your visitor with the desired information and keep their attention.
Company logos, design layout and navigation buttons should be consistent in the layout on each page so the customer is comfortable in moving around your site. This will give the visitor the desire to return and use the site again.
There should be no elaborate graphics in your content. Everything should load quickly and be professionally presented. Ensure there are no spelling errors in your content.
Depending upon the number of items you are presenting, if you have a catalog in your layout, you may need a “search” feature in your content layout. A visitor who is leisurely perusing your site will not use it. However, a visitor who is focused on their search will almost always use it if it is visible when they first see your site. Customers of large sites are increasingly expecting it.