As the world continues to go digital, it rings truer than ever that your website is your business’s front door to the world. Is it warm and inviting or confusing and off-putting?
Making a bad website is easy.
If you don’t have a plan to make it clean and user friendly, it will without a doubt turn into a sticky web of confusion.
Excessive scrolling, illogical product/service pairings, confusing or contradictory information, graphics that don’t load properly, excessive load times—all of these things will boost your bounce rate.
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What’s a bounce? A bounce happens when a visitor to your website leaves without visiting any additional pages beyond the one they originally landed on. So if I visit your home page, then leave, I’ve bounced.
You don’t want that. Instead, you should aim to create an environment such that people want to stay a while and get to know what your business brings to the table.
What Your Website Should Do
Your site should have two mutually important goals: (1) to inform visitors of your products, offerings, and value (2) to capture leads through a ‘contact us’ function. Everything outside of these priorities is just a ‘nice to have'.
According to Chartbeat, if someone stumbles onto your site, you’ve got less than 15 seconds to grab their attention.
With so little time to capture their interest, every navigation item, image, and word on your website needs to be carefully selected. Discover 5 things you can start doing today to make your website more attractive to prospects:
1. Stay on Top of Trends
While you never want to copy someone else outright, it’s never a bad idea to look at what your most successful competitors are doing. Beyond just the competition, take note of helpful new features—like live chat—you see on other sites that you think your prospects might appreciate.
2. Try Something New
Instead of using cookie-cutter imagery or templates that everyone else uses, try something new. Marketing agencies that specialize in the technology space (you’ll find a few at IT Nation) can help you create a unique new look and feel you can be proud of—one that’s user friendly, informative, and adept at capturing leads.
3. Keep Your Audience in Mind
While you might not have the time, energy, or resources to flesh out buyer personas, you probably have a pretty good idea of who your customers are, what terms catch their eye, and how much (and what) detail to share in order get them one step closer to buying from you. Keep all those nuggets of information in mind as you craft your website. And lead with the benefits they’ll gain from choosing your solution.
4. Get to the Point
While you may be a master of lengthy prose, this isn’t the place for that. Brevity is key. Think about the amount of time you spend researching a new vendor’s website. You want the facts served up neatly and concisely; your customers need the same thing. Give them just enough information to make them reach out for more.
5. Build Credibility
Wondering why just about every website you visit includes an awards, testimonial and accolades section? It’s to build credibility. Saying you’re great isn’t as valuable to a prospect as a respected third party singing your praises.
Don’t Forget to Measure Results
After your site has been live for a while, measure results. Google Analytics is a powerful, free tool that can help you drill down into the granular specifics of what is and isn’t working on your website.
The best rule of thumb is that if your first design doesn’t capture the results you’re looking for, try making minor adjustments. Then wait a few weeks/months to collect data, evaluate it, and act accordingly.
Remember, your website is your front door to the world. Every now and again, it’ll need a fresh coat of paint or something new to keep it current, but don’t overdo it.
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