The coronavirus outbreak ushered in a new digital age of the internet. Now, having a website is mandatory for establishing an authoritative presence on the web.
If you’re running a business online, building a website that can represent your brand isn’t an option but a necessity. You can’t promote your business without a fully optimized website. However, building an attention-grabbing, memorable, and representative website for a global audience requires so many different things.
The color scheme, the number of pages, and the content is just the tip of the iceberg. Doing your research before proceeding with your web design project is essential for understanding what works best in your market, industry, and business niche.
Modern consumers pay special attention to your site’s design and the quality of content, among many other things. Let’s talk about the steps you need to take to design a catchy WordPress website for a global audience.
How to know that you will have a global audience?
Many businesses venture to grab the attention of people across the world. However, capturing global clients might not be a top priority for you.
Unless your web and company are intentionally localized, you can expect visitors from basically anywhere. Choosing to accommodate them is the main reason why you might need to prep your WordPress website.
Thus, businesses considering a global approach need to consider the international visitors in their messaging and design of the WordPress website. If not, you could end up creating barriers that will increase the bounce rate significantly.
As a result, you should understand the types of visitors you will receive. Your design WordPress website can cater to their needs without much issue with enough preparation.
Think about localization
The internet makes it relatively easy to build a website using available WordPress plugins. However, expanding to a global market is quite a challenge. Users expect everything in an instant. And if a site fails to deliver that, users will swiftly leave to browse other alternatives.
The main goal is to expand your business to a global market, but this would require you to create products and services specifically for a target market, regardless of their location, culture, or language. In other words, you can’t just translate your content – you need to localize it. That means optimizing the entire user experience.
Start your localization efforts by using a WordPress Translate plugin. It automatically provides visitors with access to the translated version of your website. More importantly, it’s entirely SEO compatible and can translate your website into over 60 languages.
Thus, if you accommodate users from specific countries, you can expect them to feel more welcome.
Stick to a simple design
The simpler your design is, the better. You need a simple but effective design a WordPress website to allow your content to shine and grab the attention of your visitors.
Complex web design elements tend to disturb the visitor’s experience rather than provide a push to complete specific tasks. A simple design means simple navigation and clear CTAs, which you need to work on your conversions.
However, it is also essential to consider the colors and imagery you add. For instance, people from different countries can interpret colors differently. Thus, it is important to study color meanings and create universal designs. Your designers will need to develop culturally conscious color schemes that will not only represent your business. They will also aim to make every visitor feel right at home.
Additionally, a global audience is not the only thing to consider. Disability-friendly features should be considered as well. After all, the web should work for all people, regardless of their software, hardware, location, or ability.
Responsive designs are likely to be at the top of your priority list. Nowadays, people want websites to adapt to their devices successfully. For instance, you want to enjoy an e-commerce site both on mobile and PC. Sometimes, you might even want it to look esthetic on your tablet.
Website responsiveness is mandatory, globalized or not – your website must be responsive across all available devices. However, make sure you research the most popular types of devices in your target locations.
You can use the Google Analytics tool to conduct your research and gather invaluable data to further personalize user experience according to local consumer preferences.
What are some of the essentials for a responsive web design? They include a fluid site grid with proportionate instead of fixed measures. Flexible visual elements are also crucial.
Consider the direction
Most website owners design a WordPress website in English that goes from left to right. English-based websites have web design elements like calls-to-action placed on the right side of every web page to keep them within the endpoint for visitors.
However, if you aim to target Arabic countries where the language goes from right to left, the optimal placement for the elements like CTAs will affect your entire web design. WordPress translation services can help you in this case as well. They support RTL languages, and CSS rules help you adapt the layout to suit your needs.
If you opt for on-site translations, Google needs to know what the target language of the web page is. The best way to feed it information is to add an HREFLANG tag to translated web pages. HREFLANG tags ensure that the viewers from different locations can find the correct version of your website on search engines.
Check your keywords
The online realm is dominated by search engines that rely on many parameters and metrics, such as keywords, key phrases, and metadata, to prioritize websites in their databases.
For global website expansion, you’ll need globally optimized keywords. In other words, you’ll need to do some research to find the key terms that are globally acceptable. Without the proper use of keywords, you cannot improve your SEO rankings. As a result, your website will get less exposure on Google or other search engines.
Of course, crafting a global website can be difficult. Conducting keyword research will take longer if you want each localized version to support different phrases. Of course, you also need to pay attention to what users in other countries want.
For instance, a Virtual Private Network lets you change your IP address and access local services in the country you wish to target. Then, you can find your rivals and determine what areas in their local industry can be improved. Thus, deciding to initiate a VPN download will mean more access rights for research purposes.
Use a CDN
Expanding globally requires you to prepare for handling heavy web traffic. After the effort you’ve invested in optimizing your site for global markets, the last thing you need is a slow loading time or an increased downtime due to the overwhelming amount of traffic.
A CDN is an excellent way to reduce server lag and ensure your website doesn’t crash. It stands for content delivery network.
Consider website forms
If you target global audiences, your website’s forms should also reflect that. It might not be the most user-friendly approach to leave forms that accommodate visitors from the US. Such changes are significant if you ship to other countries.
Then, you should have enough fields to help users provide their shipping information. For instance, not only visitors will be able to enter a state or US zip code.
Remember data privacy laws
Digital privacy is a major concern nowadays. Users want more transparency and clear-cut explanations on how their data will be used. If you plan to adapt your website to users in Europe and the US, you should learn about applicable data privacy laws. For instance, GDPR covers such affairs in Europe, meaning that your website cannot accept visitors from this region without proper adaptation of user data.
In fact, many websites are still unavailable in Europe as they do not comply with the requirements presented in GDPR.
Adapt your language
If you have not localized your website but keep most of its content in English, you should consider one thing. Of course, English can be seen as a universal language, with many online users knowing it well. However, you should realize that not everyone will have a native-like understanding of it.
Therefore, it is recommended that you use more straightforward phrases and avoid particular words. The recommendation is to keep it simple for everyone!
Expanding your business to global markets is an excellent idea. It allows you to tap into a worldwide audience and significantly increase lead generation, conversion rates, and revenues.
However, before starting your global expansion, ensure your web design doesn’t interfere with your efforts to conquer worldwide markets. For instance, try to pick neutral visual elements and colors.
Furthermore, adapt your forms and registration fields to accommodate users from different countries. Shipping is also an important aspect. There should be enough information on shipping fees and the countries you have the resources to serve.
Each location is different with different preferences. Your ability to address those preferences will determine how successful your business expansion will be.