It doesn’t matter if you spend $1,000 or $10,000 on your website. If it doesn’t work, it’s failing you. You may not think your business relies on your website to generate leads and sales, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Whether your website was created to lend validation to your business or to convert visitors to sales, a website is one of the most important forms of media you have to reach people. Websites are a lot like traditional advertising vehicles. They must be changed and updated to reflect your industry’s trends and to show that you are the expert in your field, and that you have confidence in your products and/or services.
People become customers. Customers purchase from and support your business. Customers means you succeed. So, if your website is not making you accessible to your customers – say it is not user friendly, mobile friendly, and accessible, your site is probably failing you.
Your website must be created for your customer
Your website is all about your customer, not about you. It’s about what customers need, what they perceive they need, what they want, and how they can get it. Your website’s job is to supply the information that addresses those needs. How do you get there? Start by determining who uses your website and who you want to use your website. Then, build a customer-centric website. Create a list of the issues that your customer would want answered and create a website that answers those needs. Remember, what you want is not necessarily what they need.
Easily Distracted by Shiny Objects
Do you like flashy moving bits or huge images scrolling across your website? Do you hope that people will click those images and navigate further in to your website? Guess what? Those moving and shiny objects actually decrease click-throughs. Most website visitors scroll or navigate away from rotating banners or headers; very few people are actually clicking on them. In the event you have flashy shiny bits on your home page, you are most likely wasting prime homepage real estate that could be used to direct your customers to the products or services you sell
Trying to Say Too Much
Too many choices make choosing impossible. You have about three seconds, if you are lucky, to get your potential customer’s attention. So, if your website visitor is greeted with a page full of graphics, clutter, unusable content, and more, your potential customer may be confused and quickly leave the page. It’s better to have a simple interface that can direct your customer’s attention with laser-like focus to the areas that will serve them best. Try avoiding clutter at all costs.
Mobile is Here to Stay
More and more consumers are turning to mobile and smart devices for purchasing. Ninety-one percent of all Americans have cell phones, and 56% of those are smart phones. Twenty-four percent of those use their smartphone to locate information (such as addresses, phone numbers, contacts, etc.) on local businesses. So, is your website responsive? Does it resize so that images and website elements will adapt to the size of the monitor on which it is being viewed? Or does you customer have pinch and scroll to find the information they are looking for. If they’re pinching and scrolling, they are not going to hang out for very long and your bounce rate for mobile usage is going to go sky high. It’s now necessary, yes necessary, to have a responsive website.
Stop Trying to be Fancy
This love affair with industry jargon that peppers websites left and right simply has to go. One, it’s overdone. Two, not everyone understands what you’re trying to say unless you say it clearly. Although those in the same industry may “get it”, people who are learning about your industry or trying to decide whether to use your company for a job, may not understand what a jargon filled website is trying to convey. This may be overly frustrating and cause potential customers to leap to another site. P.S., using industry jargon also sounds really pretentious. Just speak to your audience. They will appreciate you for it.
If Your Website Looks Cheap, People Will Question the Quality of Your Products
We know we live in a world where we get what we pay for. A cheap looking website will rarely, if ever, provide your business with a ROI. In fact, if anything, it could damage you and your reputation and/or might turn away potential customers. Think about it this way, if you want to stand out online and be perceived as professional, why would you cheap out? Why would you want your business to look like it doesn’t have the wherewithal to pay for a well-designed website? If a business’s website does not look credible, business does not look like is not doing well, and customers will and do go somewhere else.
Stop Failing Your Website and it Will Stop Failing You
Take the time and resources to really look at your website and your web presence.
- At first glance is it clear what your product(s) and/or services are?
- Do you have a definitive online strategy that keeps site content current and meets the needs of your clients?
- Do you have attainable website goals? Is your website meeting those goals?
- Are you damaging your own reputation by ignoring your clients online needs or by providing them inaccurate or old information?
- Is the site too old to be of value?
Get out of the dark ages and enter the light. Hire a professional who can create a clean, usable website design and develop the website that will market your company. Cheap can only get you so far.