The Welcoming Website

header welcomematIf you are an organization that serves people, your website serves as your online front door. Make sure the welcome mat is clearly on display and that first-time visitors can quickly learn about and connect with you.

Here’s a checklist to help you evaluate how well your website welcomes new visitors:

  • Your website is up-to-date and accurate. Timely social media posts are great, but a well-presented and  accurate website is still the cornerstone of a great online presence.
  • Your website is easy to find with search. Most people will find you online by using Google or another search engine. Make sure your website actually shows up using basic keywords in different search engines. Ask multiple people to test how quickly your site shows up on searches from their own computers and mobile devices.
  • Your website is mobile friendly. Many visitors will come to your site on a mobile device. Make sure they can access the information they need. Again, ask people to look at the site from various devices and report any issues.
  • Your home page is geared to the first-time visitor. Everything someone who knows nothing about you needs to know should be on the front page.
  • Your website offers details. Website visitors are skimmers, but some–especially people who are trying to get to know you–will crave details. Be sure that your site offers some information about your history, key services, and goals.
  • Your website is personal. A contact us form where people need to submit a form in order to get a question answered is pretty impersonal. Whenever possible, set up an email address to an actual person who will answer questions. Make your organizational real with names and faces. And, answer emails promptly.