This week, we're showcasing some of the website features found on using the WebRevelation Portfolio. So far, we've talked about themes, flash pages, and headers. Now, let's talk about some of the other details that make a website user-friendly.
Forms: Having worked in the insurance industry for many years, I can verify that one of the most common incoming phone calls is a customer, provider, broker or vendor looking for a form. Many have already tried to find the forms online before calling, so making the forms as easy to find as possible will reduce the number of phone calls. Ability Orthopedics has done a good job of this, as has the Advanced Laser Center of Oklahoma.
Sign-ups: If you are offering any sort of classes or seminars, your customers will have frequent questions about those classes, and how to sign up. If they are able to do this online, it will make your job easier, and this task easier for them. The Oklahoma Rider Education Program has a great example of this, as has 4 H.I.M. ministries, which gives people information about how to sign up for missions trips.
About: Prospective customers will often peruse a business or organization's website to get a "feel" about who the people are who run the business. Beracah Productions has an excellent "About" page, with menus for simplifying navigation. Onsite Cellular Repair has cleverly included a list (not a drop-down menu - an actual list) of their major services on the front page, which has paid off well for them in terms of Search Engine Optimization. Champions Photo has included an excellent online portfolio, demonstrating how they make ordinary people (not professional models) look great in photos, and Brush Busters has humorously provided "before and after" photos to show what they do (plus, they have an awesome photo of a brush hog in action). Finally, Burleson Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics has provided a "kid friendly" office tour, which might be helpful for parents trying to convince their kids that going to the dentist is going to be "fun."
Jennifer Pointer (e-mail) is a trainer and tech writer in Tulsa, OK. She promotes a simple, a low-tech approach to effective online profile management, search engine optimization and social networking. Her weakness is the mocha frappuccino.