Think of a luxury item that you bought recently. Now think of something that you may have gotten at the dollar store. What they have in common is that their packaging sets your expectation of what was inside. The packaging on the luxury item probably oozed quality and maybe exclusiveness, while the bargain item’s package probably stressed inexpensiveness and approachability. In both case, you knew exactly what you were getting before you opened the packaging.

Now imagine that your business came in a box, and that box is your website. What do you think your customers and clients would expect of you? If you have years of experience, are selling high end services and are charging premium rates, would people know that by looking at the quality of your website?

Every business is trying to convey a message to their potential customers, so think of website design as part of your visual messaging. That means your design is communicating something whether it’s intentional or not.

Your prospects, just like you, experience the world with their eyes first, and it only takes milliseconds after they arrive on your site for them to make a gut assessment on whether they trust you enough to stay and learn more,. And that first impression can make or break the acquisition of that new client.

In essence, design has an impact on how much money you will make, but why is that?

Good design shows potential customers that you care about what you do; that you are invested in it. It shows them that you are as professional as you can be. It shows people that you are relevant, and in turn it makes your prospect feel comfortable with idea of doing business with you. The inherent thinking is such that if a business has made the proper investment into their design and brand, then they’ve done the same with their services.

Now think about the alternative: a cheap, poorly designed site with outdated content. Do you think that visitors are going to care about that business when the business doesn’t care about itself? Do you really think that business is going to get the lion’s share of sales leads?

Another way to think about this is to invoke the phrase “dress for success.” When you have an important meeting, you pull out your best suit and shine your shoes. Why do people do that, and then ignore their website, when more people will see their website than they could ever meet in life?

The bottom line is …you can be the best at what you do, but if your website doesn’t make you look like the best at what you do, you’re not going to get the business you deserve.

So take a hard look at what your website design is saying about you and your business, and ask yourself if you are really proud of the way it represents you.

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