No, not that kind of steamy.
I’m talking about successful business websites like the one that Valve created for their flagship project: Steam.
I’m an avid gamer. My loyalties lie with Valve and I buy most of my PC games through Steam. That being said, I haven’t seen Steams website in over 7 years because I only use my dashboard browser for anything online related to Steam. So, I thought it was high time to investigate my favourite gaming platform’s website.
Truthfully, I’m glad about how similar the dashboard is to the actual website. Here is the website again:
And here is the dashboard browser:
Sure some things look a little different, but that’s because I’m signed in on the dashboard, and it is tailoring my experience to me.
Overall, this website falls in line with the article on successful websites written by Wesley Young titled, “8 Keys to a Successful Local Business Website“.
Granted, Steam in an international company. But hey, that means these tips must be followed pretty well by Valve if this website is doing so well!
The 8 tips are as follows:
- Make Contact Information Visible and Consistent: Right off the bat, Steam has the Support page available for any and all help a user may need. As Steam does require their users to be signed in, this is reserved until after an account has been made. This is the only downside to contacting Steam.
- Get the Conversation Going With Live Chat and Contact Forms: Steam is built on community, and as such, Steam uses the Community and Support pages readily available for quickly accessing hundreds of thousands of topics from tech support to game reviews.
- Design an Appealing, Easy to Use Interface: I may be biased here. Not because I like Steam, but because I am so used to the interface that it seems second nature to me. However, breaking it down, the top four buttons being Store, Community, About, and Support offers quick and easy access to whatever part of Steam you would like to navigate to.
- Use Defining and Searchable Key Words on the Front and Back End: This is referring to how easily can you Google, Bing, etc the website. This one I would say is Steam’s weakest attribute. If I were new to computer gaming and I type “Games for computer” or “Computer gaming platforms”, Steam isn’t on the first page of Google (and as we all know, if it isn’t on the first page, it doesn’t exist).
- Activate Your Page With Regularly Updated Content: This is my least favourite part about Steam. Valve is so good at updating the games available, and keeping them on sale that my wallet is always empty. Steam is updated on an hourly, and during big sales, on a minute basis.
- Feature Your Social Media Channels to Spark Engagement: This is tricky. Steam DOES have Facebook and Twitter, but Steam almost functions as its own form of social media. So in a way, it is always on social media!
- Ensure Your Website is Mobile-Friendly: Easy enough. Steam has an app. a wonderfully annoying app that tells me every time a game I want is on sale. this is on my app on my I-Phone:
- Track the Results!: We cannot see the stats ourselves, however, Steam being such a successful product means you can bet Valve is keeping track of all its information. This we can count on!