Website Development Guide for 2024

Monday, 13-05-24, Nick Zoumpoulis


We show you the most important steps needed to have a proper and successful website with all the modern visual and technical features, and more. Whether it's a corporate presentation website construction, an eshop or rent a car, the basic steps and ingredients for success remain (almost) the same.

In the year 2024, managing to build a proper website is not an easy process. It requires proper organization, planning, constant communication and a lot of effort from both companies that should be ready to work together on a completely different scope of work. We say it and we will say it again, the success of a website starts with proper collaboration and communication between the experts in the field (the company that will build it), and the client-partner. Without the vital help of the 2nd one things become quite difficult since he is the only one of the 2 who knows well the subject, product or service that will be presented through the new website. Even if we are talking about a vehicle rental website, a field in which we have enough cooperation, experience and expertise, each partner always has something new to offer and a unique way in which he in turn offers his services.

So having mentioned the first 2 most basic components, communication and collaboration, let's get a little more technical.

What makes a website successful?

Success has certain characteristics and each one is a step that brings the next one. The steps usually come in the following order:  

  • Proper visuals and easy/friendly navigation interface
  • Fast loading times
  • Content and direct access to it in multiple ways
  • Good search engine ranking
  • Visits that stay on the page for some time
  • Increased sales of products and services
  • Increased brand awareness

The last 2 steps can come in any order, but none of the 2 will come if the previous steps are not done correctly first and in the specific order. Let's go over them in more detail?

Website Development Guide for 2024

Visuals and Website Environment

The first and very important component. It's not enough to just manage to attract new visitors to our website, we need to be able to keep them browsing and why not, to keep them visiting us again in the future, thus building a relationship of trust. If we manage to attract the visitor's interest but also give them quick access to the right information, we have usually won them over.

A visual with aesthetic harmony enhances navigational interest, credibility and your corporate identity. At the same time, using the right colors, fonts, graphics and images help a lot and enhance the user experience, pushing them to stay longer.

The visuals and structure of the website should be optimal on any device, whether we are talking about a desktop, tablet or mobile. We are clearly referring to Responsive Web Design and the potential it offers in usability and accessibility. You can learn more about it in the 2 articles we have available Responsive Website Design, providing access to everyone and Responsive Web Design part 2nd.

Fast website load times

Fast loading times are extremely important for both visitors and search engines like Google. As far as search engines are concerned, they use loading times as one of the key ranking factors in search results. Websites with fast loading times tend to be much more successful in organic results. In terms of visitors, the impact of a page with a slow load time is crucial since it affects the visitor's first experience and retention on the page. To illustrate, here are some key statistics related to load times.

  • 73% of visitors via mobile devices report that they have often encountered websites that take too long to load.
  • 47% of visitors would like to wait no more than 2 seconds to see the first page of a website.
  • For every second it takes to load, 7% of visitors give up and move on to the next result.
  • 40% of visitors abandon the website if it takes more than 3 seconds to load.
  • If an e-shop type website achieves sales of 100,000 euros per day, for every extra second of loading the loss can reach 2.5 million euros per year.

For more information on loading times, you can find out more here: Loading Times and Speed.

Meaningful and Rich Content

We have said it, we say it and we will say it: Text, text, text! The most essential component of information for both visitors and search engines. Text, when worded correctly, not only provides deeper understanding and information to the visitor but also determines the position of a website in search engine results. As we move into 2024, the importance of the right text and the right information that manages to deliver value to the visitor is crucial.

Plus, with the over-use of A.I. and tools like ChatGTP, the value of the right, unique, meaningful and accurate text is even more important. Recently, Google has made massive and radical changes to its algorithm to improve search results and provide the most relevant and highest quality information to its users.

Specifically for updates involving AI text checking, Google has incorporated strategies that identify and evaluate content based on advanced language understanding and authenticity. 

In addition to introducing BERT (Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers) in 2019, which improved the way Google understands natural, human questions, and MUM (Multitask Unified Model) in 2021, which is much more capable of analyzing complex questions and understands content in 75 languages, Google has made another major update. In March 2024, it announced plans to combat AI-generated content designed to boost search rankings through the manipulation of algorithms. At the same time, it states that it intends to delete AI-generated content from search results and even target people who post low-quality content on websites with high reputation scores.

Good search engine ranking of the website

It's not enough to have a website, we need to find ways to drive visitors to it so that we can achieve an increase in sales of products and services as well as awareness (the last 2 steps). Proper organic SEO (search engine optimization) is the holy grail of a website's success and is an area we can talk about for hours. There are several ways we can drive visitors to our new or existing website, through Social like Facebook - Integram, through Google Ads in search results (labeled sponsored), through Google Business & Google Maps, and finally, through organic results in search listings. The last one, based on statistics, is the most successful but also the most difficult. 

Organic SEO is extremely important for any business that wishes to have visibility online, as it is the basis for creating a sustainable and long-term presence in the search engines. Unlike paid advertising, organic results are not dependent on an advertising budget and can provide ongoing visibility at no extra cost.

At the same time, research and case studies of real-world scenarios show us that visitors tend to visit and trust organic results much more than sponsored results and the former, give much better sales statistics to websites with products and services (Visit to Sale Conversion Rates). 

A strong presence of your website in search engines gives you a huge competitive advantage, but it takes proper preparation, patience and time, as well as all the previous steps mentioned. 

Visitor Retention Time

Another factor that shows the quality of the website, also known as the dwell time. When visitors stay for a longer time on a website, it usually means that they find the content interesting and useful, that there is enough value in the information they receive. Also, websites with a longer dwell time tend to rank better in search results, as this potentially indicates higher quality and relevance of content. The dwell time or bounce rate (on the contrary) is a measurable indicator. 

Websites that provide products or services, increased dwell time can directly affect conversions, i.e. sales. Visitors who carefully read the content and interact with the website are more likely to convert into customers or perform a desired action, i.e. contact form.

Finally, we should mention that websites with high visitor wait times contribute significantly to creating a dynamic relationship and the chances of a future visit are significantly higher (Returning Visitors). 

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