The Internet has billions of web pages all competing for the interest of web users. Within any given industry there can be thousands or millions of websites that can be found. Once they are found your site visitors will make a snap decision as to whether or not they want to continue viewing your website.
The Initial Impression
The immediate impression someone gets of your website will determine whether or not they stay on your site or hit the "back" button. It is important that your site be easy on the eyes, easy to navigate and clear in its purpose.
Skip the flash introductions that people get frustrated waiting for. Though they will impress a handful of people, most people will ignore them and resent having to wait for them to load. Have a clean and clear landing page and you will be able to capture the interest of more people.
Make sure it takes less than 1-second for someone visiting your site to know what you are about. If you sell watches make sure there are watches on the landing page. If you are a lawyer make sure your landing page says where you practice and the type of law your practice. You have less than 2-seconds to make an impression so make it count.
Contact information is important. If you have a website there is no reason to use Gmail, Yahoo, AOL or other similar email addresses. Have an email address set for your specific domain. People will question the credibility of a website that uses this type of email address.
When contacting clients or potential clients make sure your email address is from your domain and is professionally written. You will lose credibility if your email is poorly written or comes from a Yahoo, Gmail, Hotmail or other type of account.
Have a phone number on your website even if it is for a virtual phone system that takes a message or forwards the calls to your home or cell phone. Consumers want to see phone numbers on websites.
Quality of Content
The quality of your website content is vital. Make sure it is well written, error-free, clear and concise. Your failure on any one of these three points will make you lose credibility in the eyes of your target market.
Consider the above factors and make sure your site appears professional to your target market.