A Web site has to accomplish two crucial things in its quest for success: to attract customers, and to hold their attention. To achieve both, optimum site design is critical. As David Salinas says in a recent MarketingProfs article, if you design a great-looking, user-friendly site with well-written marketing copy that isn't search-engine-friendly, few people will get the chance to experience your work of art. On the other hand, if your site is well-built and well optimized, yet the design is boring and amateurish, it won't hold your visitors' attention—and it might even drive them away. He offers some tips for building a powerful Web presence:

Avoid templated Web site solutions or cheap overseas Web shops. Templated Web site builders generate sloppy, extraneous coding that is unfriendly to search engines, while an overseas shop may not design up to US standards, Salinas says. A reputable Web design agency, on the other hand, should follow the requirements of the W3C, Google Webmaster guidelines, and industry best practices to ensure your site functions smoothly in all environments.

Research your market and build with your customer in mind. "Get a clear picture before starting your Web site project of who your ideal customer really is," says Salinas. Web site preferences of look and feel vary according to gender, age, culture and interests, he says. A good designer should have a grasp of these concepts.

The Point: Think like a superhero. Go for true value and quality, not the easiest solution, when looking to build a more powerful site.

Source: MarketingProfs. Click here to learn more.

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