A few years after forming, Google published an article titled “ten things” which was a guide for doing business.  Some of these same ten things hold true today for website designers and developers.  Similarly, businesses can add these guidelines to their philosophy.  The following four guidelines are especially important to business websites.

The first guideline is to focus on the user.  Focusing on the user when developing web pages ensures that your website serves your visitors.  Don’t focus on increasing your bottom line, that will come as your website attracts more visitors.  Focus instead on providing relevant information.  Ensure that each web page is clear and simple (these pages also tend to load faster).

Next, focus on doing one thing really, really well.  Google spends an enormous amount of time looking for continuous improvements to their search engine.  Your website should focus on what you do well.  Don’t try to be the “do everything” business.  Promote your best product or service.  Once you are satisfied with the results, you can always change your focus to another product.

Third, Google believes that faster is always better.  Your website should also load fast.  A visitor’s time is valuable and they should not view your website as being slow.  Visitors will not stay on your site.  They will leave in search of another business.  A simple clean website loads faster than a website overloaded with graphics, flash, etc.  Test your landing pages to determine how fast they are.

Finally, you don’t have to be at your desk to need an answer.  Mobile searches are becoming more popular.  Build your website so that it is fully responsive, especially for smartphones. This reinforces the last point.  Keeping your website landing pages simple also makes them fast to load on smartphones.

The four Google guidelines outlined above still hold true today.  Your website needs to address the needs of your visitors.  It needs to be focused, it needs to be fast, and it needs to be responsive.  Follow these guidelines and your website will attract more visitors and and more importantly, keep them on your website.

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