Have you stopped to think that perhaps the current website you’re running isn’t working in your favor? The goal of your business website is to grow and expose your business, isn’t it? Well, don’t be one of the many who forget that websites are just another form of media…and the goal of media is to grow your list so you can convert prospects into leads, leads into buyers and buyers into lifetime customers. In taking this into consideration, we’ve compiled a list documenting the most common reasons websites do NOT help grow a business.
1. Your Business Website Isn’t Capturing Leads Effectively Enough
Of all the factors we’ll cover here, this is the big one – your business website’s most vital task is to capture leads, period. You need to move visitors and those “tire-kickers” quickly into your funnel and out of the noise. Think about this: When an Internet surfer lands on your site for the very first time and decides NOT to purchase anything right away – which is very likely – you risk losing him or her forever if you didn’t make it easy and compelling for them to opt-in. You need a LEAD MAGNET…and you need to present it in many different formats amidst your website.
2. Your Business Website is too Focused on Making That First Sale
Capitalizing on point one above, most website make this classic mistake, so don’t fret if you’ve done it; we understand that you really, really want visitors to just dig into their pockets, whip out their wallets and start buying your service or product sight unseen – and, in sales, who wouldn’t? – but that just isn’t the normal path for 90 to 95-percent of your website traffic, unfortunately (especially in a somewhat strained economy). But don’t misunderstand — you DO want to make it easy for people to buy (and easy for people to understand) what it is you sell and/or offer…but that should not be the primary goal of your website when it comes to new visitors.
3. Your Business Website Isn’t “Sticky” Enough
While we’re not specifically referring to fly paper here, a “sticky website” is one which, quite similarly, keeps visitors around. If you want your website to exhibit “sticky” characteristics, you need to first put yourself in the shoes of your customers and generate content, tools, bells and whistles that will keep them around for more than just a few minutes or, worse, a few seconds. This is one of the reasons blogging is so important – by frequently including blogs on your site, you create a wide variety of content that visitors can browse through. Our additional advice? Don’t stop there – depending on the type of business you’re running, you’ll also want to add little games, tools or other interactive widgets to deem your website “more valuable.”
4. Your Business Website is too Design-Oriented
Can you believe that this tip is coming from experts in online DESIGN and marketing? Here’s the thing: Most small business owners worry excessively about their site’s design, and not surprisingly so. Web design agencies, graphic design freelancers and a plethora of other entities are whispering suggestions in your ear…and let us be the first to tell you that most of them know NOTHING about growing a business. So stop listening, and while you’re at it, stop listening to all of those family members and friends who take a gander at your site and want to provide some…you know…”friendly feedback”. Indeed, unless they’re business owners or entrepreneurs themselves, you can go by Tony Soprano’s mantra and just “fugedaboutit.”
5. Your Business Website Lacks Calls-to-Action
As obvious at this sounds, you need to show people “the next step” and provide them a prominent link to it – we are regularly amazed at how many business-to-business and business-to-consumer websites lack what are known as “calls-to-action.”
A call-to-action is a link or graphic that takes prospective customers to more information about a topic – in the case we’re discussing here, your brand, product or service – usually through a landing or conversion page. These landing or conversion pages are the “bread and butter” of a lead-generating website, allowing visitors to download whitepapers, guides, product catalogs and more from your site by providing some kind of information in a lead form.
Your business website has the ability to generate massive amounts of new business, but you have to unlock that potential. Because your website is always available, it boasts the capability of being your top sales person. Don’t leave money on the table by disregarding a website that doesn’t generate leads.