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10+ Must-Have Website Features for 2024: A Comprehensive Guide for Business Growth

In 2024, having a website is no longer optional. It’s your online storefront, a hub for valuable information, and a gateway for customer interaction. Just like a well-designed brick-and-mortar store, your website needs to be functional, informative, and visually appealing to attract and convert potential customers.

By incorporating these 10 website features, you can create a website that stands out, drives sales, and positions your business for long-term success.

1. Easy Navigation:

Imagine walking into a store where you can’t find the products you’re looking for. A website with poor navigation creates a similarly frustrating experience for visitors. Users should be able to find the information they need quickly and intuitively. Here are some popular navigation design options:

  • Standard Header Menu: This horizontal menu at the top of the page displays the main website sections (Home, About, Contact, Shop, etc.).
  • Floating Navigation: A sticky menu that remains visible as users scroll down the page, ensuring easy access to all sections.
  • Hamburger Menu: A common feature for mobile-friendly websites, this menu hides behind a three-line icon and expands to reveal navigation options when clicked.
  • Vertical Sidebar: Ideal for content-heavy websites, a vertical sidebar on the side of the screen allows users to navigate through various sections.
  • Footer Navigation: While the header houses the most important links, the footer can include sitemaps, resources, and other helpful links.

2. Intuitive Design and User Experience (UX):

Think about the problems your product or service solves and how your website can be a seamless extension of that solution. A website with intuitive design and UX prioritizes user needs and creates a positive emotional response. Here are some key aspects to consider:

  • Usability: Is your website easy to navigate? Does the design flow naturally, guiding users from one action to the next without confusion?
  • Usefulness: Does the website provide value to users? Does it help them achieve their goals, whether it’s finding information, making a purchase, or contacting customer service?
  • Desirability: Is the website visually appealing? A website should be both functional and aesthetically pleasing.
  • Findability: Can users easily find your website through search engines?
  • Accessibility: Is your website accessible to everyone, including those with disabilities? This includes features like screen reader compatibility and keyboard navigation.
  • Credibility: Does your website feel secure and trustworthy? Users need to know their personal information is safe and the information presented is accurate.

3. Whitespace and Background:

Apple’s website uses white space to let its products steal the show.

Whitespace, or negative space, plays a crucial role in creating a clean and user-friendly website. It visually separates elements, improves readability, and allows users to focus on specific content or calls to action (CTAs). The whitespace doesn’t have to be white; it can be any background or color block.

4. Consistent Colors and Relevant Photography:

Branding extends to your website’s look and feel. Maintain color consistency with your brand identity across the entire website, from the color scheme to the graphics. Use high-quality and relevant photographs that resonate with your brand and target audience.  Avoid generic stock photos and opt for visuals that showcase your products, services, and brand personality.

5. Fast Page Loading Speed:

A website that takes longer than four seconds to load can lead to frustrated visitors abandoning the site altogether. According to a website speed study by Google, 40% of visitors will abandon a website that takes more than 3 seconds to load. 

Aim for a page load speed of under three seconds, ideally two or fewer. Tools like Google’s PageSpeed Insights can help you test and optimize your website’s loading speed. 

6. Descriptive Content:

Every word on your website should be crafted with purpose. Engaging content not only informs visitors but also improves key metrics such as:

  • Low Session Duration: Users don’t leave the site immediately.
  • Pageviews: The number of pages a user visits during their session.
  • Bounce Rates: Users who leave the website without taking any action.
  • Conversions: Users who take a desired action, like adding a product to the cart or filling out a form.

7. Accessibility Features:

Make your website accessible to everyone by incorporating features like:

Avoidance of contrasting colors: Certain color combinations can be difficult for users with vision impairments to distinguish.

Easy-to-read fonts: Choose fonts that are clear and legible, even at smaller sizes. Allow for text enlargement options.

Alternative text (alt text) for images: Describe images accurately so that users with visual impairments can understand the content.

Walmart’s temporary entrapment of focus states makes their UI + content more accessible

The W3C provides guidelines and resources for developing accessible websites for users with disabilities.

8. Mobile-Friendliness is Essential (and Not Optional):

In 2024, a mobile-friendly website isn’t a suggestion, it’s a necessity. With the majority of web browsing happening on smartphones and tablets, your website needs to adapt seamlessly to various screen sizes. Ensure your website offers a smooth user experience regardless of the device used to access it. As of the last quarter of 2023, mobile devices (excluding tablets) generated 58.67 percent of global website traffic.

9. Embrace the Power of Video Marketing:

Incorporating video content into your website strategy is no longer a fad; it’s a necessity. Videos are engaging, and informative, and can significantly improve user experience. 87% of online marketers now use video content as a marketing tool.>

Here are some ways to leverage video marketing on your website:

  • Product Demos & Explainer Videos: Showcase your products or services in action with clear and concise video demonstrations.
  • Testimonials & Customer Stories: Feature positive customer experiences through video testimonials to build trust and social proof.
  • Behind-the-Scenes Content:Offer viewers a glimpse into your company culture and team, fostering a deeper connection with your brand.
  • Integrate with Social Media: Optimize your videos for social media platforms to reach a wider audience and drive traffic back to your website.

10. Building Trust and Credibility:

Your website should establish trust and credibility with visitors. Here are some ways to achieve this:

  • About Us Page: Tell your story! A well-crafted “About Us” page humanizes your brand and helps visitors connect with your company. Tell your story! A well-crafted “About Us” page humanizes your brand and helps visitors connect with your company.
  • Security Features: Highlight security measures like SSL certificates to assure users their information is protected.
  • Testimonials and Reviews: Showcase positive customer testimonials and reviews to build trust and social proof.
  • Contact Information: Make it easy for visitors to contact you by providing a clear and visible contact form, phone number, and email address.

By incorporating these ten features, you can create a website that’s not just functional but helps you achieve your business goals and drive success in 2024 and beyond.

Ready to take your website to the next level?

42Works is a digital agency with a team of expert website developers specializing in crafting user-friendly, visually appealing websites that convert visitors into customers. We can help you with everything from web design and development to SEO and content marketing. 

Contact 42Works today for a consultation and see how we can help your business thrive online!

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