Do you worry that your business website isn’t good enough? That its flaws could mean you’re missing out on potential sales?
More and more businesses are always looking for ways to improve their website and make more sales.
So if you think there are things you can do to improve your website, you’re right. Here we look at some basic steps you can take to try and attract more customers.
1. Improve the focus of your pages
Can your website visitors easily understand what they’re supposed to do once they arrive on your website?
If they can’t, then the chances of you making a sale fall dramatically. Each page on your website should encourage the visitor to take an action that moves them towards your overall goal.
For example, if you’re selling a product, that action might be to run a search, taking them to a results page where they can look through products. On each product page they’ll have the chance to add an item to their basket, and from the basket, they can check out and finalise the sale.
However, if your website pages lack focus, then it’s easy for visitors to get sidetracked – and sidetracked visitors are much less likely to become customers.
So in our above example, if a customer arrived on the site expecting to run a search for a product, but couldn’t find the search box because the page is too cluttered, then the chance of a sale is lost.
Remember – just because you think your site’s pages are focused doesn’t mean they are. You understand how your site is supposed to work, whereas someone who is visiting for the first time has to work it out.
You can always ask friends and family for help in identifying pages that are confusing, although if possible, you should be running tests on potential customers to help avoid this sort of problem.
2. Remove any roadblocks
Even if the focus of your pages is perfect, that doesn’t mean customers will always be able to complete the goal you want them to complete quickly and easily.
If you’ve accidentally (or deliberately) put roadblocks in the way of goal completion, then don’t be surprised if your potential visitors head elsewhere.
These roadblocks can take many forms – from technical errors that prevent someone from completing a crucial step (for example, a broken contact form which stops them from getting a quote) to extra, unnecessary steps that put people off (for example, insisting that people complete a lengthy registration form prior to purchase).
The most important thing to do here is to install Google Analytics, set up goal tracking and then set up alerts that tell you if goal completion levels fall dramatically.
If you don’t do this, your successful website that generates sales and/or leads could break without you knowing it, leading to a fall in sales/leads that could go on for days before you realise something is wrong.
Once you have Google Analytics set up, you’ll also be able to use the data it provides to identify less obvious roadblocks – if a lot of people are dropping out of your sales funnel at the same point, then you know there’s a potential improvement to be made.
3. Use better pictures
Is your site dominated by stock photos? Or perhaps there aren’t any photos at all. Either way, improving the quality of the images on your site will help improve the site itself.
Photos are vital for building trust with customers. Whether it’s a high-quality product photo or headshots of members of the team, potential customers want as much visual information as possible to help them make their decision.
You don’t have to hire a professional photographer to take these pictures for you although, if you have the budget, go for it!. If you don’t, you’ll be amazed by what you can achieve using a smartphone with an HD camera.
4. Use video
Pictures are good at telling stories, but videos are even better. It can really help bring your website to life and show potential customers that you’re the perfect match for them.
Videos can be used for everything from product demonstrations to “how to” guides. And the proliferation of video sharing websites means you can use the format to spread the word about your business.
Now, you may be thinking that video is too complex and expensive for you to use, but you’d be wrong.
5. Add testimonials
Testimonials are a great way to boost the confidence of potential customers even further. They allow people to see how your business has already solved the problem that they’re facing.
Adding testimonials to your site will take a bit of work – you’ll need to find suitable clients and interview them, as well as use the photography and video skills we’ve just discussed, but it’s more than worth it.