The next thing I want to talk about is the minimum necessary graphics for a professional looking site. When I do this kind of site review I point out any graphic mistakes that were made on the site but, in my opinion, there are no material graphic errors on this site.
And I’m basing that on what the business purpose of the site is which is to get customers to contact Secured Tech for services and no mid-size company is going to decide about an IT security firm based on whether the site looks pretty or the site looks funky.
What the Appearance Portrays
A professional appearance in this context is pretty simple. I brought up an example of a site that I think looks entirely dorky, Charlie’s PC Repair. Charlie is the guy I hire to fix my computers and I found him by searching for “laptop repair guy in the Edmonds Washington area”. You can tell this website has been created by a computer repair guy, right? It’s just ugly, sorry Charlie I know you’re not watching this but it doesn’t really matter that it’s ugly.
In fact in this case, the fact that it’s ugly gives me a little sense of security because I know that it’s authentic. I’m really talking to a computer geek who knows how to work on computers. He doesn’t know how to design a website but he does know how to work on computers. If I was looking at some sleek site where it looked they knew how to build the website I might actually have some question about whether or not he was going to good at this job.
Simple Appearance and Well Organized
So the minimum necessary graphics for a professional appearing site in this case has already been met. And here what that means is that is it shouldn’t look bad and it should be reasonably well organized. That’s what he’s got.
He’s got a reasonably attractive header image, he’s got a reasonable color scheme and otherwise the site is reasonably well organized. It doesn’t have a bunch of graphic bells and whistles, it doesn’t have a bunch of junk, it’s simple and clean. And in this case, I think it meets the requirement for the minimum graphic necessary.
In fact, my advice to him is don’t spend a minute or a dime on the graphics on this site until all the rest of the minimum requirements have been met. You might hire help with copy writing or copy editing your work before it gets published, you might hire some SEO help, you might hire other kinds of help but don’t do anything else on the graphics until the rest of your site is finished.
This is perfectly acceptable, this is professional enough for what you’re doing and fantastic graphics is not going to matter here. Nobody is going to look at this and say, “Oh, I’m not going to hire these guys, this site looks awful”.
Let’s look at a polished Genesis Theme site, go to the Enterprise Pro Theme which is their newest business theme. So if the site looked like this, I would actually be much less inclined to think that these guys know anything about computer security.
The site appearance just doesn’t need to get fancy when you’re talking about something like professional security. It doesn’t need to be fancy when you’re talking about something like dumpster rental either.
It doesn’t need the cute graphics or the awful drop shadows in the text or any of that kind of stuff in order for this to be a decent design. What makes the site work graphically is the menu is well organized and you can read it, the colors are reasonably pleasing, it doesn’t look that bad and frankly, this site and this site look quite a bit better and they have less graphic customization.
Coming Up With a Very Simple Graphic System
If you’ve been around my site much you probably heard me say that if you’re not a graphic designer then don’t pretend to be one. I’ve been saying this a lot lately. Just come up with very simple graphic system, employ it and spend all of your time working on the content of your site.
The only reason you shouldn’t do that is if you’ve chosen to hire a graphic designer to design your site or the graphics on your site and then you implement that but if you’re not a graphic designer don’t pretend to be one because it’s a specialized skill.
Simplify your graphic requirements and focus on your content because none of that really matters particularly in making your site effective because after all, who buys IT services like this based on the appearance of the site? Unless the site is awful, probably nobody
They care that they’ve got so much money invested in the success of their business and in the security of their IT system that the appearance of the site is going to play no role whatsoever in their decision making. What they’re going to care about is did you convince them that you were capable of solving their problems and that you were unique enough for them to contact, that’s what matters.