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When I ask clients what they think the most important element of web design is, I usually get one of several responses.

  • The header
  • Navigation
  • Attractiveness
  • Usability, or functionality
  • Shopping cart
  • Conversions, or calls to actions
  • Search engine optimization

These are generally the most often stated elements by people who don’t design websites. Even web designers will often repeat one or more of these often spoken responses. But the truth is, the most important element of web design is none of these.

So what is the most important element?

In a word, it’s content that speaks to your ideal customer.

Notice that I didn’t just say “content.” That’s because content in and of itself is just a tool. It can be effective or ineffective. It can be the right content for your target audience or the the wrong content.

If the content on your website isn’t written to attract your ideal customer and then close them, then it’s not good content. Period.

The bottom line is, you have to lead your ideal client to the sale. That means your content has to be targeted to appeal to the ideal client and convince them that you have the answer to their most pressing questions. In other words, it has to solve a problem. If your content doesn’t convince your ideal customer that you have the solution to their biggest problem, then you won’t get the sale.

That’s why content that speaks to your ideal customer is the most important element of web design. It’s what gets the sale.

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