A quick search for “Web Design for Small Businesses” is likely to yield a number of sites and companies offering ‘cheap’, ‘affordable’ web design for seemingly cash-strapped businesses. Startups, small enterprises, and local businesses are sold ‘high performance’, ‘responsive’ websites for under £500. It’s an attractive offer. Especially when you don’t have a large budget allocation for building out an attractive and effective website. However, it’s no big secret that cheap website design will cost you more in the long run.

So what do you do?

In reality, you’re left with two choices:

  1. Go with the cheap option and hope for the best.
  2. Be prepared to spend a little more to get something that will work effectively and efficiently for a long period of time.

Regardless of which option you choose, we’ve compiled a checklist of things you need to consider when deciding on web design for your small business.

You may also be interested in reading: What Is Web Design About?

Web Design for All Businesses Needs Goals and a Purpose

Firstly, if you don’t know what the purpose of your website is, or what goals you’re looking to achieve by having a website, don’t waste money on web design.

Of course, this sounds obvious to the point of stupidity. However, you’d be surprised how many websites quickly end up needing a complete overhaul and redesign because the goalposts have changed.

Web design for small businesses needs to support the overall business goals. What’s your company’s objective? Your website is your online storefront so, with this in mind, figure out what you’d like your visitors/customers/clients to do when they arrive and optimise your site for that purpose.

For instance, you could build the best, most beautiful site in the world, but if your goal is to gain email signups and you don’t have any of the relevant tools integrated within your site, you’re not going to get very far. Furthermore, it’s a real pain having to reverse-engineer a site. So, it pays to set it up properly from the start.

Ultimately, your website needs to reflect you, your business, your personality, while also helping you accomplish whatever goals you’ve set out to achieve.

Small Businesses Need CMS and UX in Their Web Design

CMS (Content Management System) and UX (User Experience) are fundamental elements of good web design for small businesses. Without them, your website will be difficult to manage and complicated to navigate. Two things that are best avoided at all costs.

Web design built on a user-friendly CMS (preferably a WYSIWYG or drag-drop system) will allow you to maintain your website with relative ease. After all, you want your website to make your life easier, not more complicated. So keep things simple from the start.

Make sure you choose a system that you can update easily – if you need or want to. Above all, go with a CMS that gives you the flexibility to grow, adapt, evolve, and iterate in future. The last thing you need is web design that limits you to little more than basic functions. Don’t think about what you need today, necessarily. Consider what you might need further down the line. This is why it’s important to have clear goals and a purpose, as mentioned above.

Equally, it’s important to consider the end-user as well. Choose a system that makes it easy for you to maintain, but also go with a web design that makes it easy for users to navigate.

In fact, put yourself in the user’s shoes. Look at your website through their eyes. 

  • Is everything where you’d expect it to be? 
  • Is the key information easy to find? 
  • Are there too many friction points? 
  • Can the navigation process be simplified?

To put it differently, if you wouldn’t be happy with something on a webpage you were going to buy from, why would it be ok to think others would? 

Good web design for small businesses must ensure a seamless, frictionless, and intuitive user experience, as well as simple ongoing maintenance behind the scenes.

Read more about What to Look for in a Web Design Agency.

Business Websites Should Add Value

Finally, before you go ahead and spend any money on new web design, think about what value your site will bring to your audience.

How are you going to make that value apparent and accessible?

What type of content, offers, lead magnets, landing pages are you going to create (or have you already created) that offer value to the end-user?

Web design for small businesses should make it easy to execute all of the above. All you have to do then is create the compelling content that not only keeps visitors on your site but keeps them returning.

Does Your Business Need Web Design Help?

We’ve built hundreds of websites, including e-commerce sites, for clients across industries and sectors. All our sites are built on exactly the same principles outlined above – even our own. Book a free consultation today. Let us know what you have in mind. We’ll design the website your business and your customers deserve.


Anna Simmonds
Anna Simmonds

Anna, Head of Social, knows her beans when it comes to social media. She keeps her finger on the social pulse, funnelling her knowledge and experience into creating engaging social media campaigns. She’s also pretty decent with a camera and Photoshop.