Ambushed by tons of information online and countless strategical terms marketers have newly coined in attempt to re-brand and re-define what consists a “good web design strategy”, it is no surprise businesses across all industries find themselves right back where they started and as confused as before, after squandering tons of money developing one.
What exactly does it take for a F&B website to be considered highly competitive in latest times? And how far are you keeping up?
Already sweating catering to ever-shifting consumer demands and get a handle on Google’s revised SEO algorithm for search-rankings, F&B businesses are spreading themselves thinner in the challenge to stand out with a web design amidst throngs of competitive field players.
Today, we unravel all that comes into play when achieving a successful F&B Web Design Strategy; one that will outlast this industry's combativeness in the upcoming year.
Bettering The Basics
Hard-pressed on all sides to keep up with the latest web design buzz, it is easy for us to slip away digressing from the basic-fundamentals that construe a great web design strategy.
Meticulous planning of your Brand, Content, Design and Technology in detail, lays a sturdy foundation for a succeeding web design.
A proficiency to keep abreast of new developments hot-off-the-press, and the acumen to discern the enhancement features appropriate for adaptation in each of the four individual aspects from a holistic angle, will highly influence a positive turn out in the website’s overall profitableness.
Now, let's dive into details.
Determine your F&B brand image in full consideration of the audience you’re targeting to attract. Study your buyers’ persona diligently. Establishing your brand’s goals is also a pivotal step when developing your business' strategic brand vision. We stress on the importance of putting good thought in it, for a brand-centric strategy structures all the decision making within your food business. (eg. product, pricing, menu, marketing and sales strategies and brand experience) In an industry with such high-strung competitiveness, a great tip when chartering your brand's image is to be perceptive of your competitors' branding efforts, then evaluating what is necessary for yours to be of match.
You see, a web design strategy is not merely a visual-aesthetic competition. Strategic content planning is necessary for your designers to produce designs in a specific direction that will efficiently usher your business into the spotlight it deserves. Here is where your consumers’ buyers journey (awareness, consideration, decision stages) needs to be carefully examined. Consumers need to be eased into the process of making the final food purchase or the decision to head down to your food outlet. Your content should hence be disseminated accordingly on and throughout different site pages, to effectuate the ideal action of your audience at their different buying stages, smoothly ushering their follow-through successively to the buying-end.
Tactics deployed should increase in specification when audience are at a more serious buying-stage. Placing a “purchase now” button at a page where your audience is still in primary navigation, will have an obvious adverse effect on your sales conversion rate.
A successful modern day web design is one that is user-centric. Apart from its layout and art; the navigation, wording and color of your web design should always reflect your brand’s image and be of direct relevance to what your target audience would find appealing, meaningful and compelling to act upon. Your website design should also succinctly carry the architecture that supports well information your content copy seeks to deliver in all individual site pages. The skilfulness to coalesce and wove these feature requirements into an artistic visual experience, is the crux of your web design’s success.
At the forefront of web design technology updates, is the implementation of a capable Content Managment System (CMS). It spares you the cost of hiring a webmaster or the effort of consistently having to update your website. Joomla, currently a top tier CMS, is our favourite pick. Is your website optimised for mobile yet? We certainly hope so. Since last April, web performance is not only important to UI but also for SEO ranking after Google announced its Mobile-Friendly Search update. (Official Google Webmaster Central Blog, 26 Feb 2015)
Other technology hype in hot discussion this year include microinteractions, visual cues, rich animations, new typography tools, long scrolling, jump-to options and HD visuals.
Responsive Web Design- Fact or Fluff?
Well, while we are all out advocating for responsive design, we do see a bigger importance in deeming if it is the best fit for your F&B commerce.
"Out of Sight, Out of Mind". In this tech-progressive age, if your web design is not functionally accessible via all web browsing devices, you are not maximising your potential outreach to your audience and already behind competition.
A responsive web design enlivens a browser’s experience (regardless the browsing platform or device) with high technological functionality.
Some General Examples:
- For starters, your web visitors shouldn't have to pinch-to-zoom into view the content on your web page or feel tiresome filling out a long online form.
- Neither should they be straining to find and click on your action buttons or have trouble with your navigation scrolls.
- Web users are also not too accommodative with downloading an external app just to access your site.
A responsive web design responds to a user’s viewing device. It is one that can be flexibly customised to fit any screen resolution.
eg. allowing tablet and smartphone users to enjoy the same satisfying experience they get on the desktop. Here, consistency is the goal.
The professionalism of your food business in this age is hence closely tied to your ability to provide a consistent web browsing experience. Contrarily, in the F&B business, some may find investment in a full mobile strategy more worthwhile.
Determine whether going responsive or mobile (or both) fits the nature of your food business better with your audience in prime consideration.
You should always opt for a web design with them in mind.
In final words, a web design that is proven effective and profitable in current times gravitates towards a holistic-catering approach.
Forging this strategy into the foundation pillars of web design and its individual elements (Brand, Content, Design, Technology) will help maintain a congruous alignment in all their function goals. Subsequent site-developments or adaptions when revamping, will be efficiently regularised bodily in all aspects under a focal strategic direction.
This overall, achieves you polished consistency within and throughout the entire web browsing experience, well-qualifying your food business in the digital world.
On this note, we urge you not to scrimp and cut corners when investing in a web design strategy. Rather, be incisive with your investment. To stretch your dollar and make every buck worthwhile, get schooled on what your web business is digitally lacking, and seek out the professional solution that you should be opting for.
Read up how you can avoid another web investment failure in our previous post "Why Cheap Website Design Can Hurt Your Brand (and Business) So Badly ".