November 16, 2010

Judge a website by its cover with Google Quick View

We have all heard the saying “ Don’t judge a book by its cover” and we know that we all do! What if your website could be judged by its cover? Would you invest more time and effort into how your website looks? With the launch of Google’s new Quick View feature, this may no longer be an option….

The design of your website and its visual appeal has always been important. A custom designed website is a crucial component of your overall brand and a strategic part of your marketing efforts. A visitor to your site is a potential customer and it is imperative that they are impressed with your site in 3 short seconds before they decide to move elsewhere.

The challenge has always been to attract visitors to click on your site in the first place. This has been done in the past by relying on good SEO (search engine optimisation). Basically, the clever use of words, such as good content, relevant keywords etc. These would boost your chances in the Search engine rankings. Getting your website high up in the search results usually guaranteed that you would get more clicks.

But this is changing! Google has launched a new feature called “Quick View”. This feature provides users with a pop-up thumbnail preview of each website listed in the results as well as the relevant information that is on the page. A screenshot preview will reveal the actual look of your website before a user clicks on it.

This means that a user will be able to judge the quality of your site and evaluate whether they would like to click on it based on its visual appeal. Just like picking up a book!

Experts say that with Google Quick View, site design will be crucial to winning clicks and warn that it will become a critical part of the SEO process. If you get the site design right, it could have a very positive impact. It may now be possible for a website with lower rankings to actually get more clicks.

“Monte Heubsch, chief executive of SEO firm Aussieweb, warns businesses may see a drop in click-through rates if they aren’t putting enough emphasis on their design.
“This is going to require businesses to work on first impressions. If they don’t like what they see, they’re gone.”

If you don’t get the design right, users may have a negative reaction to the look of your site and not even give you a chance. Businesses will now need to rethink their e-marketing strategies and add design into the equation. They will need to place more importance on design and the presentation of their brand to make a good impression on the web.

All of this, proves once again that a custom designed website unique to your business is an investment that brings significant returns.

What are your thoughts on this? Send us a comment, we’d love to hear from you!

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get the edge