30 Must-Have Features for a Smart Small Business Website

30 Must-Have Features for a Smart Small Business Website

Photo Credit: grid workings by olle svensson Licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

Photo Credit: grid workings by olle svensson Licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

As a business owner, your goal should be to make your business website as engaging and as simple to use as possible.

“You can’t just place a few ‘Buy’ buttons on your website and expect your visitors to buy.”

— Neil Patel

With your website, you have the opportunity to introduce your business to your prospects, but it must be done right to generate a lead or converting the visitor.

Here are some key essentials of a smarter business website:

Navigation

The navigation on your site must be simple and easy to understand. An easy-to-navigate website is also easy to use. The idea is to help the users find what they are looking for, as easily as possible.

The navigation theme that you are using must be consistent. The navigation bar must be distinctly visible on the homepage of the site. The priority of the pages listed in your navigation must be in the order of their importance. Here is an example:

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Source: HubSpot

Call to Action Buttons

Adding a compelling call to action button to strategic places on your website can help you improve lead generation and conversions for your business.

The call to action button must provide customers a reason to believe that he or she will benefit from the service.

The CTA button must be action oriented and should create a sense of urgency for the user. Strategically placing them after the primary messaging on your website will  bring better results.  Here is an example:

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Source: WordPress

Domain

Another very useful feature of a smarter website is a user-friendly domain. One must choose a domain name that is related to the industry and is easy to type and remember.

Choosing the right domain extension will help in optimizing the site for search engines which, in turn, means the target audience is reached more effectively.

Here are some interesting examples:

Niche domain with a keyword: www.contentmarketinginstitute.com

Domain with regional focus: www.enterprisemonkey.com.au

Innovative domain: www.list.ly

Contact Form

Another must-have feature of a smart website is a contact form. It enables the visitors to a website to fill in their details and send in a query or request a callback.

These are useful for getting leads from the website and build a database of potential customers.

Here is an example from Base CRM:

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Testimonials 

As a business, we need to build trust with our prospects. A website must have testimonials of existing customers. User testimonials help in creating a positive image of the brand.  Here is an example of how LastPass showcases testimonials on its site:

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Blog

A smarter business website must have a blog. A company blog helps you to create unique content and get new prospects. It can also be used to promote new business features and post announcements.

Introductory Video

Getting your audience to stay on your website and understand your business is an essential for getting more leads. Introductory videos are helpful in conveying your brand message, effectively.

Consistent Design

Your website must have a consistent design across its pages. You must define a set of brand values and then use these to create a website theme that flows throughout. Consistency makes the website appear more professional and user-friendly.

Responsive

A smart website must be functional and usable across devices and platforms. Since website visitors may come from desktop or mobile, one should ensure the website is fully responsive and has a user-friendly interface on each type of device and platform.

Speed

Your site’s load speed is an important aspect of the overall visitor experience. If your site speed is slow, users are more likely to abandon it for another one. You must take all the necessary steps to optimize the speed of the website across platforms and browsers.

Backup and Security

A site backup is important to keep it protected from malware. A secure database must be used to keep the credentials and password of the site.

About Us

An ‘About Us’ section of a website gives the users an overview of the company. It is one of the most frequently visited website pages for first-time users. You can highlight past achievements and plans of the business, through this section.

Google Analytics Integration

Integrating your website with Google Analytics helps you to analyze the traffic on your website. Besides a host of other features, you can easily track the sources of your web traffic and leads and optimize your campaigns accordingly.

Social Media Integration

Integrating your website with social media channels like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn can help you promote your brand more effectively. Enabling users to log in with their social profiles on your website can help enhance the user experience. Here is an example:

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Source: Hootsuite

Logo

A business logo helps your business establish a distinct corporate identity. The logo should represent the core values of your brand. A business website must have the logo placed on each of its pages, consistently.

Live Chat

A website visitor is often looking for instant help to understand the products and services better. A live chat feature helps you connect with your site visitors and convert them into leads and customers.

Business Location 

You must showcase your business location on the website to let the users know where your business is situated. Integrating with Google Business helps you optimize your site for local searches.

Business Hours

Communicating your business hours will help your users know the best time to expect responses to their queries. Your potential clients would know about the timings of your service offerings, well in advance.

Key Business Features

Your website must explain the key products and services that the business has on offer.  Website visitors must be able to find these features easily and understand about the offerings clearly.

Comments 

The blog section of your website must have a comments plugin to enable readers to make comments.  This feature is helpful in improving the level of engagement on your blog.

Web Hosting

A reliable Web hosting service is crucial for your business website.  The feature ensures that your site is up and running and accessible by your users 24/7.

Google Webmaster Integration

Integrating your website with Google Webmaster tools is helpful to track and correct the crawl errors related to your website. The tool also helps in analyzing the keywords getting traffic and clicks for your site.

Captcha

You need to protect your site and contact forms from spambots. For this, you can use a program called Captcha. It creates simple tests that only humans can pass before they fill up a form or submit information to your site.

Option to Subscribe

The blog section of your website must have the option to subscribe to the blog newsfeed. The feature would notify the users whenever a new blog post is added to the business blog.

Smart Search

A search functionality on the home page and the blog section is useful in enhancing the user experience on the website. With this feature, you can help the users to find relevant products, services and information on your website.

URL Structure 

The URL structure of your website must be user-friendly and optimized for search engines.  It should flow according to the importance of each page on the website. Besides that, it is preferable to have the targeted keywords in the respective URLs for improving the chances of ranking in search results.

Frequently Asked Questions

Adding FAQs to your website content makes it easier for the website visitors to understand the details of the service offerings. You can create questions based on your past experiences of what your potentials customers usually ask during the first sales call.

User Reviews

Getting users to review your products and services and showcasing these on the site can work wonders for your conversion rate. Positive reviews act as a trigger for the purchase decision of the consumer.

Payment Gateway Integration

An integrated payment gateway allows your website visitors to make payments for the purchases they have made on your site. The feature makes the process of buying on your site easier and quicker.

You need to plan and build a strategy for your business website and integrate as many features as you can. A properly optimized and easy-to-use website will be a competitive advantage for your business.