Our team sees a lot of web properties and our unscientific estimate is 80% of the websites out there SUCK!! I’m willing to bet yours does too. Here’s why.
People fall in love with flashy, artsy, websites with all the bells and whistles. We hear it all the time…”Don’t you love my new website? I had my web designer use a lot of flash on the site. Isn’t it great!!” Our answer – NOT. Unless you’re an artist, entertainer, designer, etc. you don’t need a “flashy” site.
We contend that a business website has only three purposes:
Anything else is superfluous. In fact, it can hurt you. For example, search engine spiders can’t read flash. So if your site has a lot of flash throughout, it’s hurting your Search Engine Optimization. It’s likely you’re losing potential traffic that might visit your site if it were ranked higher on Google and the other search engines.
If you’re not getting the traffic, guess who is….that’s right – Your Competitors.
For each website that isn’t optimized, it’s like a leaky bucket letting money out through each hole.
Below are some of the common biggest mistakes we see in most websites:
Treating your website like a business card. A business card is static and designed to give brief, one-way information. A website is dynamic and should be designed to give full, two-way communication, secure leads and generate sales. Many companies just have the basic, About Us, Services, Contact Us, Product/Service Information and that’s it. Big mistake.
Poor SEO. SEO is Search Engine Optimization and we will talk about this in other posts on this blog but suffice to say, this is a key way to organically get visitors to your site.
Poor Design. Don’t make it difficult for visitors to find your product(s) and/or service(s), or answers to questions. Proper navigation and a FAQ (frequently asked questions) page go a long way to generating a sale.
So how can we optimize our existing web properties? Well, here are two MAJOR tips that will help you generate increased sales immediately.
First, add a blog to your website. Many companies are now doing this and reaping the benefits. There are four reasons to start a blog.
The unique content you post in your blog will increase your Page Ranking with the search engines which will drive more traffic to your site.
You are now giving consumers a reason to go to your site instead of looking at your old “business card” site that never changes or adds value to them.
You are positioning your company and yourself as a leader who is very knowledgeable about your industry/field. Customers want to buy from leaders.
People still see blogs as news instead of sales. This may seem a minor distinction but it is powerful. At least for now, people trust blogs more than a website as a reliable source for information; therefore, you can put subtle sales pitches in your blog that will convert much higher than putting the same information on your website. Product reviews are an example. However, give credible information or your customers will make you pay for lying.
Second, send people to the information they are looking for instead of your company homepage. It’s a fact that the more steps visitors have to take to get what they want the more people you will lose in the sales cycle. Shorten the cycle by including links to specific pages on your website or landing pages with the information the visitor is looking for.
For example, if you send an email advertisement for a product promotion, don’t send people to your homepage, www.yourcompany.com. Send them to a page specially designed for your product (aka landing page) that gives them some information and collects their contact information for your database.
Landing pages are a key factor in effective web design and lead generation. We’ll follow up on that subject in later posts.
I’m a marketer, plain and simple. I help you get found by your target market and influence them to buy from you. I mainly use digital marketing techniques but I implement offline marketing techniques as well.