Over the years I have worked with people who insisted on having their website look a certain way. The content was either over baring too much or not updating and fresh. Then they would look at me a say, “Why don’t people come to my website and buy my goods?”
I have tried to explain that what looks good to them (because they created it) may not be attractive to search engines and people who surf the internet.
The first rule before building any website is look at the compition. What is working for them and what is not. I am not saying copy their websites, but get a feel as to what works. Ask prospective customers what they like to see and what turns them off. Then build from it. You can always to what is known as A/B test later.
There are a few basic that will make a website. Realize these will not make you website instantly successful. But it will get you pointed in the right direction.
Let the visitors see who you are. A picture or two of you and your team goes a long ways. They see real people. Seeing real people happily working goes a lot further than shapes, colors and bunch of words.
Capture who is visiting
Get people to give you their email address for a free PDF or discount coupon. This tells you you have something they want. Then you send them a an announcement or newsletter, keeping that connection alive.
Every website these days not only should look good on you desktop or laptop computer, but on your tablet and cell phone. The reason being more and more people are using their smart cell phone for surfing the internet, doing research and making purchases.
I have often attended training for web development and design. They would say, “Mobile First”. Meaning design your website for mobile devices first then for the desktop and laptop.