Your business is like a shark – if it doesn’t move forward it dies. Moving forward means growth, increased sales, and the opening or expansion of markets. But to do this, you need leads – qualified leads. As with most businesses nowadays, your website is probably the best tools for generating these leads. The question is, "Is it working?" More specifically, "Is it converting visitors into qualified leads?" If not, the six pointers below could help make it happen:
1. Make Yourself Visible
If you are not showing up in search engines, or no other websites link to yours, you are essentially invisible to prospective clients. To change this, you will need to explore search engine marketing(SEM) and search engine optimization(SEO). These are big topics -too big to explore in this article – which you can’t afford to ignore any longer.
2. Be Compatible
If prospective clients are finding you, but they do not come back after the first visit, one issue may be compatibility. Does your website work in different internet browsers, including Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, and Safari? Have you tested it on both Mac and PC platforms? How does it perform on smaller notebook screens? Can it be seen on a mobile device?… Don’t assume that potential clients have equipment or technology similar to yours. Instead, study your target demographic and try to account for the variety of computer screens, browsers, and platforms they may be using. Then, design your website accordingly and test it in each environment.
3. Be Action-Oriented
Are you the owner of a website that looks great but does little to generate leads? What may be lacking is a clear call-to-action – a link, button, or other site element that tells visitors, "Do this!" To correct this all too common problem, begin by defining exactly what you want visitors to do on your website. Do you want them to call? Fill out a web form? Make an online purchase? Consider what type of action holds the most potential value for your business. Then, encourage visitors to act by placing prominent and compelling calls to action on your website. Here’s an example: Let’s say you want visitors to fill out a contact form so that you can add them to your lead base. Consider placing a prominent call to action button on your website offering a Free Catalog or Free Phone Consultation. When visitors click through, they arrive at the contact form page, where they are required to submit their user data in order to obtain the free offering.
4. Differentiate Yourself
Reality check: You’re not the only game in town. Potential clients aren’t just looking at your website, they are looking at many others as well and comparing all of them. Showing what makes you different is crucial to your success and survival. If you have a lot of experience in your field or the technology you harness is unique, make sure people know about it. When writing articles, use your own voice instead of trying to sound like everyone else. If you have a unique design aesthetic, don’t be afraid to flaunt it. It’s a competitive world, leave an impression.
5. Gain Credibility
Potential customers like to know that people just like them have tried out a service with positive results. You need to show that you have helped others in the past. Provide testimonials and case studies to make your message clear. Once potential customers see that you have a track record helping people just like them, you’ll gain trust and credibility – traits that go a long, long way in the world of business.
6. Stay Current
This one is pretty straightforward: if your site never changes, there is no reason for clients or potential clients to ever return to it. Furthermore, Google and the other major search engines know how old your content is, and this affects you search engine rankings, which in turn affects how many visitors and leads you generate. The solution: come up with a clear and manageable plan for updating your site. Blogs are a great way to start – they are easy to update and they provide a platform for you to write about a wide variety of topics. Consider investing in a content management system (CMS) as well. A quality CMS will allow you to manage and edit nearly all aspects of your website using a user-friendly interface.
At the end of the day, in order to grow, you will need new clients. But in order to win new clients, you first need to generate leads. If that isn’t happening on your current website, following the 7 steps above could make all the difference in the world. The next step would be to analyze, track, measure and confirm your success using Google Analytics. But to find out about that, you’ll have to wait for our next post. Stay tuned…
To read more really swell articles, follow our blog at Long Island web design company, Brainstorm Studio.