5 Actionable Web Design Tips For Startups

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A website is essential to telling the story for any start-up company. Even bigger companies like Twitter, Facebook, or Uber still heavily rely on websites or micro-sites to tell their story and connect with their audiences.  But since you’re likely not working for any of those companies your website needs to run full gamut to get the punch your marketing needs.

Luckily when building a website for your start-up, there are some things that you can do to make sure that things run smoothly.   Whether you have to put something up fast, or hire an amazing website development company you can get the traction you need. 


Below are 5 tips that you can use when designing your site, specifically for start-ups.

1. Prepare Adaptive Content

People with usability challenges have been using the web all along but over the past few years, there has been a more of an effort to make websites more accessible on multiple devices. You likely know that your website has to perform beautifully especially if your start-up is in the technology space. However if you’re running to get a website ready for an investor meeting or demo, those details can easily be overlooked.

My advice would be to determine what you want each audience segment to do on each screen.  Responsive design is not a silver bullet.  Make sure your messaging is extremely clear and viewed at a glance on smaller mobile screens and then upward to larger desktop views.

You can hide certain content on smaller screens to keep your users engaged to convert or inquire about your start-up.

2. Be Intentional with Social Media

Your start-up obviously should be on Facebook and Twitter right?  Not necessarily.  It makes no sense to setup a social media profile and link your intended customers to said pages only to see a dead or neglected social media stream.  Be intentional with each social network you choose to represent your start-up on.  In a lot of cases your social media channel will become a support line for customers or potential users.  Be ready to engage them.

My advice for new start-ups is to keep your social media links in your footer at first.  You don’t want to send the impression you’re running a strong social media effort if you’re unable to yet.

Additionally most users are starting to disregard your social media links in the top right corner since so many sites look similar (especially if you’re using a pre-made template website).

3. Keep Your Color Scheme On-Brand

One mistake that a lot of start-ups make is not being consistent with the colors that they choose. Just like being intentional for which social media networks you’d like to use, you have to be intentional with how you implement your brand colors on your website.  You want people to associate these colors with your company, and to get a sense that your company is conveying a consistent message.

If you are going to expand beyond your brand colors, it’s important to be careful which colors to include. Always use the same shades, and choose colors that work well with one another. You can use this guide for finding complimentary colors for your website.

4. Create Obvious Navigation

When people visit your website, you want them to be able to find the information they are looking for as quickly and easily as possible. The best way to do this is to think about the structure of your website beforehand, and organize it in a way that makes sense. Trying to do this after the site has been made is more tricky, and can often lead to confusion.

Be sure that you have a clear menu on your site that links to all of the major areas of your site. Viewers should know exactly where to go, just by looking at your menu.

5. Make Your Site Stand Out

Lastly, with so many websites popping up each day, you need to make yours stand out. This is not always easy to do, but there are a few things that you can try. First, choose a color scheme that is uncommon, and will pop on the screen. Don’t go too bold, as it may be off-putting, but choosing something a little risky may pay off.

Another thing you can do is add more media elements to your site. Things like video, large unorthodox menus, or large pictures can all make your site stand out. Play around with different ideas, and see which one works best for your website.

Take Action…

Hopefully this quick guide gave you some ideas for your own website. It is important for start-ups to pay attention to their website, as it is probably the best way to reach new customers. Try incorporating some of the ideas mentioned above into your site, and let us know what you did in the comments below.

Cody Landefeld

I’m a web consultant who helps WooCommerce store owners succeed. Founder at @modeeffect, husband to @raquelandefeld, and father of 3.

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