In this blog where going to talk about our top tips for website design. We’ll focus on Diving Centers, but these tips are applicable to every website out there.
There is a big cross over from Search Engine Optimisation and how you develop and structure your website. We’ll go into SEO in much more detail in our SEO for Dive Centers blog which will be coming out next week.
The first thing you need to think about is what is your website for? Sure, it’s about presenting and marketing your business, but it should also be designed with much more in mind. This is where conversion optimization comes into to play. If you’re a PADI or SSI Dive Center, then the main purpose of your website is to generate leads and booking for fun dives or diving courses. How you structure and design the site is going to play a big part in this.
Having a quick loading site is more important than ever. Here at Purple Tiger Digital 75% of our traffic comes from mobile users, yours is probably the same. It has been shown that people won’t wait for a website that’s slow to load, Google knows this and therefore they’ve made site speed a key metric when it comes to SEO and increasing your organic search rankings. You can run your site through these two tools, this will show how your site performs and they’ll also give you tips on what you or your webmaster can do to speed it up.
Leverage the fold
Okay, so we admit there’s a lot of debate about if the “fold” still exists when there’s so many different screen sizes today. However, the fact is that even in 2018, people spend 57 percent of their time above the fold with a sharp decline afterwards. 74 percent of their time is dedicated on the first two screenfuls.
So the fold still has an effect, above the fold you should include;
- Clear & descriptive Headline
- Your Main Call To Action
- Include Media – Pictures, Videos etc.
Use Hick’s Law
Hick’s Law states that the more choices an individual has, the longer they will take to make a decision.
How does this effect your diving website. Well if there’s a whole range of options, it’s cluttered and there’s lots of things going on, it will reduce the number of people that convert i.e. send you a message to book a dive trip or a diving course.
- Reduce the number of menu items
- Limit the form fields – Do you really need the PADI membership number on there?
- Focus On One Call To Action
- Only Display Social network Buttons that you’re active on
- Stick to one goal per page.
Keeping it simple
A huge study by Google has shown that visitors don’t like visual complexity. So keeping the design simple, increases the visitors rating, which means more enquires for you dive business.
Do you really need that side bar on your site? Are you trying to fit too much into one page? Do your pages have a consistent feel and structure?
Avoid Carousels & Sliders
We know dive centers love to use carousels and having a slider above the fold, all those great pictures you have of the dive sites, underwater, wrecks and the beautiful beach. It’s a winner right?
Well actually no it’s not. One of the most mind-blowing pieces of data comes from Notre Dame University. The webmaster there noticed that the first slide on a carousel received almost 90 percent of the clicks while the rest were largely ignored. So all those other images (remembering they will slow down your site speed) are pretty much irrelevant.
People tend to scan, so as well as the sliders and carousels, it’s also worth ditching the tabs and accordions.
Call To Actions
Call to action (CTA) is a way of telling the website visitor what you want them to do e.g. Book a Dive, Enquire Now, Contact Us, Sign up to our Newsletter.
Don’t just have them at the top of the page and / or right at the bottom. Remember you want to make it simple and easy for them to take the action you want them to. So have one in the middle and if your header remains open as they scroll the page have it in the header too, preferably with a different styling and colour to the other menu items. As an example notice our let’s talk button.