White Space/No Space? Why Strategic Web Design Matters in Direct Response Marketing

Let’s cut to the chase: a well-designed direct response website does a better job converting visitors to prospects and prospects to leads and sales.

A strategic, direct response web design assures your website carries out your business strategy in the online channel, guiding your prospects through the sales funnel and getting your existing customers to the “right place,” all while supporting your brand message.

When Strategy Reigns
When lead generation and conversions matter—and when don’t they matter?—you’re going to want to work with a team that has a designer on hand to make sure your website strategy plays out effectively.

Here are some things to consider…

“Informational Sites” Can Become So Much More
What do you want your website to do? Share information with visitors about your company, employees, products and services, right? But beyond this, what action do you want people to take? Some thought starters:

  • Request more details about your offering
  • Subscribe to your blog
  • Access and download reference material and forms
  • Download an article or handy resource
  • Call a sales rep
  • Share content via a social network

Your site’s needs may vary depending on whether you’re in the B2B or B2C market, whether you participate in eCommerce, and what your target market expects to find on your site. From here…your design takes shape.

A professional web designer can make sure your website is structured properly, is easy and intuitive to navigate and contains the “pieces” it needs to support your messages, content, and offers. From here…it’s time to get creative!

“Pretty” Just Doesn’t (Usually) Cut It
There’s nothing wrong with a website being “pretty,” especially if it reflects your brand. But using your website to show off the sexiest bells and whistles (like sliders, animations, and other web design trends-of-the-moment)—without the content to back up your offers or serve your visitors’ needs—is essentially wasteful. That’s because your website is a valuable piece of real estate for your brand and business, and you’ve got to put it to work. If it ends up “pretty,” it better deliver the goods.

And by that, we mean generating leads and sales and satisfying customers.

The key here is no not simply follow trends. You want to make sure that when you DO use a cool “trick,” like a popup or rollover or share button, it’s deliberate and based on a proven method to drive a certain action or response. A professional designer knows how and when to use them—and their marketing team partners know how to test and optimize performance.

In fact, according to The Next Web, web design in 2017 will include an emphasis on content, so we’ll have to make sure pages aren’t cluttered by things like “sidebars, headers, banner ads, sidebar ads, calls to action, comments, popups, social media buttons, signup boxes, etc.” These things aren’t going away, but they have to be used strategically to maximize your site’s content.

Bad Web Design Doesn’t Do You Any Favors
You’ve seen “ugly” web design. It’s somewhat subjective, sure, but it usually results in an unfavorable perception of the brand and company. It doesn’t make a great first impression—and isn’t that what you want?

But beware of ineffective web design. It’s way more subversive, because it’s launched onto the rails with the very best of intentions. Maybe its aim is to look “pretty” or “sexy,” with hopes of attracting response (clicks, form submissions, page views, etc.), but it falls short. It’s, well, ineffective.

Here are just a few of the many characteristics of ineffective web design that professional designers seek to avoid:

  • Confusing navigation – menus don’t make sense or visitors can’t intuitively get to the information they need
  • Unpleasing to the eye: text isn’t easy to read, or the colors or images distract from the message or call-to-action (CTA)
  • Doesn’t drive action: site doesn’t contain any CTAs, contains too many CTAs, or content is difficult to access or share
  • User unfriendly layout – page elements (e.g. sections, images, copy blocks) compete for attention or pages require excessive scrolling

Effective Web Design Makes All the Difference
Here’s what they will seek to achieve:

  • Simple, intuitive website structure offering simple, intuitive navigation, so visitors can “get what they came for” and be taken “where you want them to go”
  • Visual hierarchy and consistency in design so visitors can move seamlessly and comfortably through the site without friction or distractions
  • Functionality, tools, and resources that the target market not only expects but that will set the website apart from competitors’ sites
  • Elements that can be tested for ongoing page and offer optimization
  • Responsive design that is user-friendly on any viewing device, desktop, mobile, or tablet

This list is far from complete. There are so many things that go into effective direct response marketing web design—and most of it is technical stuff only a professional web designer would even want to think about! The bottom line is that it’s important your website does what you want it to do and offers what visitors expect—and what drives them to act.

Contact us today to learn more about how strategic web design can drive conversions for your website.