More employers and job seekers will visit your website in a year, just on a mobile device, than you will talk to in your lifetime.

Let that sink in for a minute.

Your website is vital to your business in areas like marketing, sales, recruiting and client support. With the right design, content and promotion (i.e., via SEO, PPC and social media), a staffing website can create tremendous opportunities to connect with, engage and convert site visitors into clients and candidates.

But does your website do the “work” that it should?

Evolving technology and rising user expectations make it extremely difficult to know – much less do – what’s right. The result? A website that’s more “lame duck” than “work horse.” Here are a few common problems we typically see with staffing websites:

  • They’re boring…
  • They’re distracting or confusing…
  • They’re outdated…
  • They provide no clear way to convince visitors to take action (e.g., complete a form, apply to a job, request an employee)…

Sound familiar? Then your website is not doing its job.

Want to maximize the value of your website as a marketing, sales, recruiting and support tool?

This series of posts explains how. In them, we cover:

  • Maximizing website ROI with design best-practices
  • Maximizing website ROI with content and “promotion” best practices

Part 1: Increasing Website ROI with Great Design

Obviously, you want to create a website that’s beautiful and complements your branding. But that’s just the start. Aside from the adhering to fundamental design best-practices, let’s explore specific ways design can help you gain/keep attention, delight visitors and drive them to take actions that lead to revenue.

Tip 1: Improve the user experience

User experience is a fancy term to describe the overall experience a site visitor has while interacting with your website. For example, if your website is simple and fun to use, visitors:

  • can find the information they need with less effort;
  • are more likely to stay on your site, longer (and convert!);
  • will have a better impression of your staffing firm.

And if your user experience is lousy? You know what your site visitors will do. Here are a few tips for using design to improve user experience (or UX) and increase your site’s ROI:

Make navigation and CTAs more intuitive

Consider the different types of visitors to your website and the actions you want them to take. The website navigation, structure and calls to action should allow each user to find what they’re looking for quickly and easily.

Enable access to any page with just one click

Large-format dropdown navigation makes it easy for a user to quickly see all the information contained within your site – and get to any page with just one click.

Use graphics, font size and color to direct the reader’s eye

Leverage your website’s design elements to purposefully direct the reader’s attention. Design elements like graphics, font size or colors should create a visual hierarchy of information as website visitors scan the screen to find what they are looking for. Leverage these tools to help direct the reader’s eye and promote your calls to action on that page.

Make forms shorter

Forms can be the biggest lead-generation source on your website. To optimize them for conversion, make them easier to fill out. Keep them concise and only require the fields that are necessary. To make completion even faster, leverage third-party services (such as those provided by Google, Facebook or LinkedIn) to autofill forms for employers or job seekers.

Up Next: Designing Killer Mobile Sites and Landing Pages

Don’t want to wait for the post to publish? Get the Idea Club Whitepaper: Staffing Websites: Maximize ROI with Great Design here.

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