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Selecting the Ideal Website Platform for SME Brands: Key considerations for Digital Managers

A website is often the first point of interaction between a Small and Medium-sized Enterprise (SME) and its potential customers. For digital managers, choosing the right platform – whether it’s WordPress or Wix – is a decision that can clearly impact a business’s online presence. We’ve rounded up the key considerations when making the important decisions…

1. Ease of Use and Flexibility

The chosen platform should offer a user-friendly interface that can be managed by team members with varying levels of technical expertise. For SMEs, where resources are often limited, the ability to easily update content, add new pages, and make basic customisations without needing extensive technical know-how is crucial. Flexibility in design and functionality is also important to ensure the website can evolve alongside the business.

2. Scalability

Scalability is paramount. The platform should be able to accommodate the growth of the business, handling increased traffic and additional content without compromising performance. This means considering not only the current needs of the business but also its future aspirations, ensuring the platform can grow with the brand.

3. Cost-Effectiveness

Budget constraints are a common consideration for SMEs. Digital managers must weigh the costs associated with different platforms, including setup, monthly or annual fees, and any additional costs for plugins or extensions. It’s important to find a balance between affordability and functionality, ensuring the platform offers value for money.

4. SEO Capabilities

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is vital for increasing visibility and driving traffic to the website. The platform should have strong SEO capabilities, allowing for optimisation of content, mobile responsiveness, fast loading times, and the ability to modify meta tags and URLs. These features will help the website rank higher in search engine results, an essential factor for online success.

5. Security Features

With increasing cyber threats, the security features of a website platform are non-negotiable. The platform should offer robust security protocols to protect sensitive data, including SSL certificates, regular security updates, and secure payment gateways for e-commerce sites.

6. Integration with Other Tools

Integration capabilities with other digital tools and systems, such as CRM software, social media platforms, and email marketing services, can significantly enhance efficiency. The ability to seamlessly integrate these tools can streamline operations and provide a more cohesive digital strategy.

7. Technical Support and Community

A strong support network is invaluable, particularly for SMEs with limited in-house technical support. Platforms that offer reliable customer service, comprehensive documentation, and an active community forum can be advantageous, providing resources and assistance when needed.

8. E-commerce Functionality

For SMEs looking to sell products or services online, e-commerce functionality is a key factor. The platform should offer a seamless shopping experience, with features such as shopping carts, payment processing, and inventory management.

Whether you go for WordPress or Wix, choosing the right website platform for an SME brand involves a careful evaluation of various factors, from ease of use and scalability to cost, SEO, security, integration capabilities, support, and e-commerce features. By thoroughly assessing these considerations, digital managers can select a platform that not only meets the immediate needs of the business but also supports its long-term digital strategy, fostering online growth and success.

Are you about to embark on a new website project for your organisation? The Digital Marketing Solutions Summit can help!

CREATIVE DESIGN MONTH: Key considerations in devising your strategy 

Creative design for a campaign plays a pivotal role in capturing the audience’s attention and conveying the brand’s message effectively. For marketers, devising a creative design strategy involves a blend of innovation, market understanding, and brand alignment. Here we outline the key considerations you must account for when developing an approach, based on input from attendees at the Digital marketing Solutions Summit…

1. Understanding the Target Audience

The foundation of any effective creative design strategy is a deep understanding of the target audience. Marketers must consider the demographics, psychographics, and behaviours of their intended audience. This includes age, gender, interests, values, lifestyle, and even the digital platforms they frequent. Design elements like colour schemes, typography, and imagery should resonate with the audience, evoking the desired emotional response and connection.

2. Clarity and Consistency in Brand Messaging

Creative design must align with the brand’s identity and messaging. Consistency in design elements across all channels reinforces brand recognition. This means ensuring that logos, colour palettes, and typography are uniform and reflect the brand’s ethos. For instance, a brand known for its environmental commitment might use green tones and natural imagery to communicate its values.

3. Balancing Creativity with Functionality

While creativity is crucial, it should not come at the expense of functionality. The design must be user-friendly, especially in digital campaigns. It should facilitate a smooth user journey, from the initial engagement to the desired call to action. For example, a visually stunning website is ineffective if users find it difficult to navigate or locate information.

4. Leveraging Trends and Innovation

Staying abreast of the latest design trends and technological advancements can give campaigns a competitive edge. However, marketers must carefully evaluate which trends align with their brand and audience. Incorporating elements like augmented reality, interactive content, or bold typography can enhance the appeal of the campaign, provided they add value to the user experience.

5. Multichannel Approach

In today’s digital age, marketing campaigns span multiple channels, from traditional print to social media and digital platforms. A creative design strategy must be adaptable to various formats while maintaining a cohesive look and feel. This requires an understanding of the nuances of each channel and how audiences interact with them.

6. Measuring Effectiveness

Finally, the success of a creative design strategy should be measurable against the campaign objectives. Metrics such as engagement rates, click-through rates, conversion rates, and social media interactions can provide insights into the effectiveness of the design elements. Continuous monitoring and the willingness to tweak the strategy based on feedback and performance data are essential for achieving the desired outcomes.

When devising a creative design strategy for a marketing campaign, marketers must balance artistic expression with strategic thinking. By understanding their audience, maintaining brand consistency, embracing innovation, and adapting to multiple channels, marketers can create compelling designs that not only capture attention but also drive tangible results. As the marketing landscape continues to evolve, those who skilfully blend creativity with strategy will emerge as leaders in the realm of effective communication.

Are you on the hunt for Creative Design solutions for your organisation? The Digital Marketing Solutions Summit can help!

Photo by Jeroen den Otter on Unsplash