The internet is no longer a shiny new toy, and having a website for your business is no longer optional. However, there is a difference between having a web presence and having a web presence that actually helps your bottom line. If you want your website to make you money, there are a few aspects regarding its design that simply have to be present. Thats the purpose of this checklist. Run through and make sure your business website stacks up, so you can convert web traffic into real-life sales. Inviting Color and Graphics: When a prospect lands on your homepage (or landing page), they are going to make a snap judgment about the professionalism, quality, and usefulness of your website in less than one second. This may sound extreme, but its the truth. Think of the last time you landed on a web page that you thought looked unprofessional. Im willing to bet you didnt sit and ponder whether or not the site was professional or not. You just decided. It happens that fast. With that said, you need colors and graphics on your site that are going to make the prospect want to stay and find out more about your company. The colors should be the colors of your brand, because you want everything to be consistent. It doesnt help if a prospect gets to your site and then leaves because they think they are in the wrong place. The graphics you choose should immediately and clearly tell a story that reinforces the message of your site. It is best if they include your product or services. Identity Capture Form: Getting a prospect to your site is important, but it isnt everything. Once they are there you need to get their information or it was all for naught. The best way to do this is with a web form. There will be a decent percentage of your visitors who arent quite ready to buy and if you do not have a place to capture their information and follow up later, you will be losing sales. For example with one of our clients, they can convert about 2% of visitors into immediate online sales. However another 6% of their visitors are interested enough to give their contact information and without an identity capture form all of these leads would be lost. If they close just 20% of those leads, that will give them another 1.2% of their visitors turning into closes meaning an increase in sales of 60%. Think of something that you can offer prospects in return for this information. This could be an informative newsletter, a helpful report, free samples, etc. When a prospect fills out the form, you can then follow up with them and warm them up for a sale. NOTE: Make sure you deliver what you promise in the form and then some! Nobody likes to feel like they got swindled, and you dont want to swindle anyone out of their information. You get information and they get amazing content, thats how it works. I didn't want to post too long of a thread so this is just a portion of a report we wrote about business website design. If you want to see all the tip we wrote up you can download our free Business Website Design Checklist. Enjoy!