Few elements of a small business are as vital as the website. It is here that many customers first encounter your company, and a strong first impression will make the difference between increasing sales, boosting a financial plan or running into problems. Therefore, you should always be on the lookout for ways to improve this critical aspect.

Most importantly, a great website is incredibly helpful to your customers. That excellent service is something you should strive for, so to help you out here are four effective tips to spruce up the design of your website:

1. Make sure it is mobile
Today's consumers live on the go. Mobile devices – such as smartphones and tablets – are incredibly common, and many people want to use this technology to shop online. So, your website has to be up to the task. Kelli Shaver, a contributor to the American Express OPENforum, wrote in an article that a mobile-friendly site is a must. This can mean getting two versions made – one for computers and one for these devices. Or, you should look into ways to make your existing site more mobile, including less auto-playing videos and a cleaner design.

2. Stay as organized as possible
Your website should be as organized as you can make it, Shaver explained. Users want to be able to find everything quickly and easily, and having a lot of information online can make that a challenging task. So, try to remove any unnecessary design features, like text and colors. Keep clutter to a minimum and ensure that the layout is intuitive and simple.

3. Pick the best images
Your website also needs to look great, and quality images can help you with that goal. According to Inc. magazine, it is best to be optimistic. Avoid negative photos, regardless of your industry, and convey to visitors just how positive your company really is. That way, they'll remember that trait at a later date, and that can help you with sales.

4. Make the site functional
Some websites can be tough to navigate, and this is a major turnoff for a lot of customers. Inc. magazine recommended that you make your design as functional as possible. This means subtitles on your videos, larger links and clickable areas. Above all else, your website has to be accommodating for people with disabilities. Never alienate anyone, because they might be your next customer.