5 Ways Your Website Might Be Failing to Deliver the Goods!
I want to start with a simple question… and one that I want you to consider seriously.
Are you 100% satisfied with the way your website looks and functions… YOU KNOW it both educates your visitors AND truly compels them to take the next step toward becoming a customer?
If you’re not exactly confident in your answer, don’t worry. You’re certainly not alone. Creating a website that truly achieves your business goals requires both an art and science. It’s also much more challenging than most business owners think. It’s only AFTER a website doesn’t deliver the desired results that folks come to appreciate how challenging the task really is!
There are lots of reasons websites underperform, but I’m going to briefly cover some of the most common. I’d encourage you to evaluate your own website across these areas and give thought to how you might improve your own site in order to drive your business forward.
A poor first impression
A few years back, you might have been able to recover from a poor first impression, but those days really are gone! There’s just too much competition for those eyeballs and our mobile and social world have made your prospects absolute experts of the “lightning fast scan”. Seriously, you’ve got less than 1 second before that initial impression begins to form.
So you’ve got to use this precious time wisely. Imagery is key here, as is the headline. Aim to keep it SIMPLE YET STUNNING. Simple means an uncluttered layout with a clear and short headline. Now is NOT the time to present 10 different options or a full paragraph of text. Stunning means capturing your visitor’s attention through an intriguing or highly relevant image that connects with them personally.
Confusing or complex navigation
Assuming you make a good first impression and your visitor is willing to stick around, you’ve got to make it super clear and super easy for them to access additional information. That means quick links from your homepage to your site’s main content areas as well as an intuitive menuing system that keeps clicks to a minimum.
In most cases, you should resist the temptation to use “internal speak” or proprietary product names as main menu items. Put yourself in your prospect’s shoes – someone who may have little or no knowledge about your company or services. Your menus should use THEIR terms – or perhaps even crafted in a way to capture the benefit your product or service would deliver for the prospect.
While it’s important to provide your users with a clean and efficient way to consume your content, it doesn’t mean your prospects don’t appreciate the details. In fact, today’s prospects almost always prefer to educate themselves prior to making contact with a company representative. So it’s important that you provide enough content to allow them to do this.
Focus on dividing content into meaningful chunks that can be easily digested with a quick scan. However, make sure to give you users a way to drill down if they choose – via expandable text modules or links to additional pages. This approach works well for visitors only wanting to quickly get a sense for the “big picture” as well as the visitor who is willing to spend more time digging into the details.
Non mobile responsive
We’re well past the tipping point. More folks are using their mobile devices to access the web than desktop computers. If your site is not mobile responsive I can guarantee you are paying the price – in the form of lost visitors and lower Google search rankings.
If you’re not sure whether your website is currently mobile friendly, Google has tool that will allow you to instantly check. Just visit https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/.
If you’re site is not mobile friendly, this should be a TOP PRIORITY.
Lack of a clear call to action (CTA)
If you’ve got a great looking, mobile-friendly site with solid content, you’re ALMOST there… but you’ve got to close the deal. How do you do this?… by presenting a clear call to action. It’s not rocket science but it’s too often missing from websites. Very simply, if you don’t tell your visitors what you want them to do, they will most often do nothing!
Don’t be shy. If you are trying to drive quotes for your products, include a “Get a Quote Now” button prominently throughout the site. If you’re generating leads by offering a free guide, then highlight a section on each page that includes compelling language and a short form to request the guide. If you are aiming to produce inbound calls, your number should jump of the page! You get the idea.
Of course there are many more elements that contribute to a highly effective site, but these are the most important based on our experience with clients. If you nail these 5 things, you WILL start seeing better results!