Branding and brand recognition play huge roles in not only marketing your product or service, but in letting the consumer know who you are, and what you stand for. Website design isn’t intuitive for many of us, and it can be challenging enough to make sure your website is reflecting all of the basics: your company name, your contact information, your location, what you have to offer, and potential price points. The backend of the website can be even more challenging to get it right: important SEO signals, fast page load speeds, user-experience, and much more.
Once you’ve built a webpage that reflects everything you think it needs to, it’s also challenging to look at it with fresh eyes and determine what it says about you. What your webpage says about your business, your core values, history, and goals is important. Each of these things can be explained in different and creative ways, which is important if you want to keep your customer base engaged. So how do you know if your page really reflects your brand?
Does Your Website Tell Your Story?
A portion of your website should be devoted to the story of your brand. This includes where you come from, why you’re passionate about the industry you’ve chosen, and what your company’s values are. More and more, consumers are driven by the desire to not only do good in the world, but to identify with the companies they do business with.
I recently stumbled across a company whose videos were going viral on social media. It was a beekeeping company in Texas called Texas Beeworks, and the videos were popular because they showed the Beekeeper, Erika Thompson, removing unwanted bee colonies from her customer’s homes with care, compassion, and her bare hands.
When you visit Erika’s about section on her webpage, you notice several things. First and foremost, her “about” tab does not describe price ranges, or say much about how her company makes money. What it does describe is her passion for conservationism, her company’s mission, how she got where she is and what inspires her. She also has a resources tab that furthers her mission and simply reiterates her story: that she values conservation and is working hard to protect the declining honey bee population.
Set The Tone
Your professional image should be uniform across all public domains and customer touch-points, including your social media pages and your website. If your business model and company culture are conducive to it, try to make your website as much a reflection of your brand’s personality and brand design as it is of your business.
Your webpage might be the first impression that a potential customer or business associate gets when searching for information about your company, so it’s important that it sets the standard for your online professional image. If you value other peoples’ time as much as you value your own, it’s imperative that your site is up to date with current business hours, promotions and products.
During times of national or even global challenges, it’s also important that your website identifies you as a leader, not only in the industry, but in society. Make a statement regarding current challenges that you know your audience is facing, and make sure it reflects your brand. You’ll want your website to be organized and cohesive, with a brand design language that translates across all of your media pages. You’ll also want to make sure you’re reachable and approachable through your page. Make it obvious that you're willing to engage the customer and how they’re able to contact you.
Use Your Logo and Expand Your Brand
Your website offers a great opportunity to expand brand recognition through the use of your logo and brand design language. Adding your logo to each page makes you more visible, and more memorable, to the client after they browse. Your logo design should exemplify the core values you want to portray of your company, if possible. Create a design language that is flexible to different applications to expand on your identity--both online and offline. Think of patterns, color palettes, a unique style of photography, etc.
A clean, modern, or timeless logo design can add to the brand design language and compliment the tone of your online presence and should do so across your webpage and social media pages. If your branding system is techy, compassionate, or conservative, let your logo, brand design system, and website reflect that. As your brand grows over time, your brand design and guidelines can grow with you. Reinventing your business logo to fit the image you want to portray, specifically for your website, should not be out of the question. Revisit your brand identity and your online presence if you feel it doesn't accurately represent your missions, vision, and core-values. We touched on this topic in our 2021 Branding Trends.
Reflecting your brand through your website doesn’t have to be intimidating. Working with a web designer or graphic artist can help you translate your company’s values to your brand design language and your online presence if you’re unsure about how to approach the task. Let your website and your brand system grow as your brand grows, and reflects changes in company culture as your business matures.