Do your web site visitors get a virtual gold mine or the shaft?
You've seen them. The web sites that have more going on than a three-ring circus. It flashes, it plays music, and it blinks. But does it communicate with its visitors? Web sites that take advantage of the latest technology but leave old-fashioned communication at the door are missing the boat.
Follow these guidelines to ensure your site's not one of them.
· Talk to your audience. Know who you are talking to and speak to them in their language. Whether it's recruits or client prospects, make sure you communicate a clear, consistent message. What value does your firm bring to them?
· What does your image say about you? You are an accounting firm. You certainly will have a different web appearance than a high-tech video game supplier. But keep in mind that your web site should appeal to your target market. If you deal with businesses and high net-worth individuals, make sure the feel and tone of your web site will appeal to them.
· Avoid the technology trap. Technology provides a lot of bells and whistles for web designers. Make sure every element offers value to your web visitors.
· Easy to scan. Web surfers have short attention spans and limited time. They are looking for quick info. Make sure your web site offers scannable content - use bullets, short paragraphs, and larger fonts. Visitors need to be able to find information quickly, too.
· Ask for feedback. When in doubt, ask. Put a survey on your site and ask for comments about how to make your site better for your visitors. Offer a "freebie" to entice them to fill it out - it will be worth the dollars you spend.
Voice of the Editor
Which isn’t completely true. I mean, occasionally I drop by when I manage to sneak out of the nonstop frat party over at Going Concern, but I’m mostly a wallflower over there. I’m happy to say that I’ve been given express permission (or explicit orders, if you like) to wander over here to AccountingWEB more often.
Why is that, you might ask? My job is to replace the irreplaceable Gail Perry as Editor-in-Chief. What does that mean? I don’t really know! I think it’ll be fun getting a feel for things, throwing in my own thoughts here and there, and listening to the discussions you’re having about the accounting profession.