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If your company has a website, you probably want that website to be a part of your branding strategy. While this can be difficult, it is not undoable. In fact, if you follow these five steps, you will be well on your way to having a website that adds to the quality of your brand, rather, than detracting from it.

Be consistent. One key part of branding through a website is keeping that web presence consistent with the rest of your branding. If you have a logo, it should be prominently displayed on every single page of your website design. If you have a color scheme and signature fonts, these should be integrated into your website theme. Think of your website as a room of your actual business location; it should flow well with the rest of your business.

Be simple. If at all possible, use as your website address so it is easy to tie in to your business’s name. Keep headers simple, navigation bars intuitive, and pages uncluttered. This will allow people visiting your site to access the information they need quickly and without frustration. It also will give you an image as being accommodating and easy to deal with, which will keep customers coming back.

Be professional. If you want to present yourself as a business professional, you will need a website that is designed by a design professional. While many people think that they can easily learn the design basics they need to put up a small, simple website, the results usually look like a kindergartener did them. This is not the image that most small businesses need to be successful. Don’t sell yourself short by allowing this highly visible part of your brand to be anything less than perfect.

Be interesting. Make your site interesting, easy to read, and even a little humorous if that is congruent with your brand image. Hire a professional writer to write the text if you are totally lacking in inspiration. Add fun illustrations and photos where they add to your message. People are likely leave a boring website, however informative, but they will keep coming back to an appealing and relevant one.

Be personal. Make sure people can see not just your brand, but the face of your brand: you. Put a personal photo of yourself and your family in the ‘About Us’ page, and link your site to a blog that is updated regularly. Let people feel that they know you.

An attractive website that follows these five tips will soon become an integral part of your brand, providing customers with 24-7 access to information about your business. Because more and more consumers are turning to the internet to find the businesses and information that they need, this one feature can make the difference between success and failure. Having a poorly designed and poorly branded website—or none at all—is selling your business short in a way that may be fatal.

Mash Bonigala

Mash B. is the Founder & Creative Director of Logo Design Works. Since 1998, Mash has helped thousands of businesses express their brand messages through creative and award winning logo designs.