what does a good website need

What makes a good website?

leonie waldron
Leonie Waldron
Head Strategist


  • A good website speaks to your customers in familiar language, and clearly and concisely explains what you do.
  • Your site should aim to inform and educate potential customers at each stage of the buying process. 
  • It should also be fast, technically sound and laid out in a way that makes sense. Use easy to recognise terms for navigation and product names. Assume zero knowledge of your business and products: how would you describe things in plain language? 

The website audit secrets that will help make your site better

A lot of people come to me knowing that they need to do something to ramp up their marketing, but they’re not sure where to start.

Every industrial business is different – but there are a few common things I look for to ensure your ‘marketing machine’ is working at an optimum level.

These include:

  • Your marketing strategy: who are your customers and (importantly) who are not your customers? Is your branding clear and concise? What problem is your business solving and why are you the best choice for your customers? Is your overall strategy tied back to your business goals?

  • Your tactics: what are the actual ‘things’ you’re doing on a daily/weekly / monthly basis to help your customers? Are you talking to them through the right channels? Are you using a good mix of ‘owned’ media such as your email list, in addition to borrowed platforms such as social? Are your tactics tied back to your strategy?

  • Your website: your site is the only sales rep that works for you 24/7: is it performing at its best? Does it immediately speak to the customer and communicate what you do? Does it lead people into wanting to know more? Does it educate and inform with appropriate levels of information, from broad and simple overviews through to detailed technical information?

Let’s dive deeper into your website and how you can assess whether it’s optimised for what you want to achieve.

arrow carved in stone

The heart of your marketing machine: your website

Whether you’re selling direct or through distribution channels or wholesalers, there are 5 key things effective websites have in common.

What makes a good website?

  1. They immediately tell people what you do, in plain English, above the fold (ie: before you start scrolling down the page).
  2. They use customer-oriented language, for example ‘we help you reduce the carbon footprint of your construction projects through geosynthetics’, instead of ‘we supply high-quality geosynthetics for construction projects’.

    See how the first statement actually conveys how you help, whilst the second just states that you sell a product?

  3. They go easy on the jargon, acronyms and industry slang. Using clear, simple language leaves no doubt about what your product or service actually is.

    Wrapping it in complex terms to sound ‘professional’ causes customers to hesitate: if they can’t decipher what you sell in 3 seconds, how can they be sure your solution is right for them?

  4. They have a good mix of content for all stages of the customer journey. That means simple and easy to read ‘product 101’ information, comparisons, breakdowns and ‘what is’ articles that explain the basics of your product or service.

    This can lead to more complex technical information such as spec sheets, engineering notes and detailed case studies, but the key thing is to have a good balance of both on your blog and throughout your site.

  5. They are fast, technically sound and information is grouped in a logical fashion. Technical SEO and page structure are dull but necessary: getting found on Google is easier when your site structure makes sense, both to humans and search engines.

    Look for how things are categorised and grouped together. Does it make sense from the customer’s perspective? If you’re using product names like ‘AKYF50 Heavy Duty’ instead of ‘500mm Heavy Duty Vinyl Pond Liner’, think about how that is understood from a customer perspective. The latter is much more descriptive because it tells the customer what the product actually is. Remember that internal business terms that make sense to you aren’t always the right choice for your website.

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Recommended reading

Here are my top recommendations to get you thinking about how to really put yourself in your customers’ shoes, cut through the clutter and give them the helpful information they want to see on your website.

They Ask You Answer by Marcus Sheridan

Absolute gold… if you’re only going to read one marketing book, make it this one! This shows you step by step the simplest way to build a website that helps people by creating informative and useful content.

Essentialism by Greg McKeown

Way more than just marketing, this book gives you clear actionable steps to simplify your work processes and remove unnecessary bloat, whether it’s your website content or your life.

Building a Story Brand by Donald Miller

This book gives you a good template to follow and a ‘sense check’ to ensure your content puts your customer at the heart of everything. Miller shares a proven formula that helps you lead your customer through the buying journey without the hard sell.

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