Finding The Ideal Website Template For Your Business
It goes without saying that your website is one of your most important marketing platforms - if not the most important - so choosing the right template for your business is vital. Don’t be tempted to rush into it or simply select a template because it looks chic and beautiful, because there are factors other than aesthetics you need to consider first...
Get clear on your goals
Before you even begin comparing different website templates, it’s important to sit down and spend some time considering the core purpose of your website. Of course you want your website to look beautiful, but it’s unlikely that’s your main goal - you’re running a business after all. Is the primary purpose to sell physical or digital products? Is it to grow your subscriber list? Is it to encourage people to visit your physical storefront?
Once you’ve established your website’s primary function, have a think about what the secondary website goal(s) might be, and then jot them down on a piece of paper in descending order of importance. For example:
- The primary goal of my website is to sell my candles online
- The secondary goal is to prompt visitors to sign up for my e-newsletter so I can market my candles to them on an ongoing basis
- I want my website to look beautiful and reflect the luxurious and feminine aesthetic of my brand.
Once you’ve got your goals down on paper, keep the list visible while you browse through various website templates and consider whether each template you’re looking at will fulfil your website’s key purpose(s). For the example above, you would need to make sure the template integrates with a reliable e-commerce platform. It would also need to have a section that prompts visitors to subscribe to your email list. And of course the design would need to look beautiful and fit your brand’s visual aesthetic.
Choose a responsive design
It’s vital that your website looks great and maintains core functionality when viewed on different devices and screen sizes. This is HUGELY important because it’s extremely likely that a large percentage of your visitors - if not the majority - are going to be viewing your website on their smartphone, so if they have to pinch and zoom in order to check out a product or read a section of text, they’ll abandon your website faster than you can say ‘sky-high bounce rate.’
A responsive template will ensure your website looks great and functions intuitively on desktop screens, tablets and mobiles, and will help make viewing and interacting with your site an easy and seamless experience for your visitors - regardless of what device they’re using. Thankfully most new templates are responsive by default (for example, all of Squarespace’s templates are optimised with responsive design), but it’s still vital you check. If the template description doesn’t clearly state that it’s a responsive design, get in touch with the designer or developer to clarify, and ask to see a demo site so you can check out how the template translates when viewed on tablet and mobile devices.
Thanks for reading and all the best with choosing your new website template! If you’re looking for more information on choosing a website template, I recommend this article and this blog post by Envato Tuts. If you have any questions or want to leave some feedback, I’d love for you to post a comment below - I promise to respond ASAP.
P.S - If you’re on the hunt for a new website template, I highly recommend Station Seven who offer a gorgeous selection of designs for Wordpress and Squarespace. Big Cat Creative also offers a great array of Squarespace template designs, and Northfolk & Co offer a gorgeous selection of Showit templates.