Every visitor to your website is a potential customer.
Maybe they saw your postcard or ad and typed your URL directly into their browser. Or maybe they were searching for your product or service on Google and came across your site.
Either way, if they landed on your site, they have SOME level of interest.
So why do many of them click away from your website without ever giving you a chance to close the sale?
I’ll tell you…
Because your website did not do its #1 job!
To increase trust and affinity with the prospect so they feel comfortable enough to interact with you!
Here are a couple of interesting statistics:
- 96% of visitors to your website are NOT ready to buy
- 75% of people judge the credibility of a company based on its website
That tells me two things:
- You MUST capture the identity of those visitors so you can follow up with them, and
- You MUST make them feel comfortable enough to give you that information!
To that end, here are 11 things your website needs in order to convert as many visitors into leads and customers as possible:
1. Flawless programming.
What is your impression when you visit a website that contains broken links or pages that take forever to load? It doesn’t really instill confidence in that business, does it? And since 40% of people will abandon a website that takes more than 3 seconds to load, this should be your first priority.
2. Responsive website design.
What does that mean? If your website is responsive, that means it can automatically convert to a mobile version depending on the type of device being used to view it. Today 65% of digital media is consumed on mobile devices — up from 53% in 2013. I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to browse a non-responsive website on your smartphone but it is EXTREMELY frustrating. You’ll be pinching and zooming in order to read anything at all. Not to mention: Google will penalize your site with lower rankings in mobile search results if it’s not mobile friendly, making it harder for mobile users to even find you.
3. A good, marketing-savvy design.
I’m not talking about a bunch of bells and whistles. I’m talking about website design that makes sense for your business and immediately tells visitors they’re in the right place. Your website should use photos and a color scheme that are industry-appropriate: blues and whites for dentists, green for landscapers, pinks and purples for dance studios. People like familiarity at a website. That makes them comfortable there. If your site sells products right on the site, make sure the checkout experience is easy and familiar — like Zappos or Gap or Amazon.
4. A clear, obvious headline.
The headline on your website should, like the main image and color scheme, let your visitor know what kind of site they’ve landed on. A big, bold headline is something people can quickly scan before they decide whether or not they want to continue reading, before they make the time investment to read an entire page. Speaking of which, you need…
5. Lots of sub headlines and clean copywriting.
If your prospect does make the decision to hang out and stay on your website a while, reward them with scannable, easy-to-read copy. (Copy is the words on your website. The content.) Use sub headlines (miniature headlines that introduce a chunk of text) that your visitors can skim and decide whether or not they want to continue reading — otherwise, chances are, they won’t. Also include bullet points. These are easy to read and help to break up big blocks of copy, which can be intimidating and turn visitors off.
Make the copy helpful to the visitor rather than pushing the sale. Also, make sure your copy includes the terms people type into Google when they are searching for what you sell (this will help increase search engine optimization or SEO). One more thing: skip the industry jargon. Speak to your prospects in a language they can understand!
Don’t just tell your prospects about what your business offers — tell them how it will solve their problems or make their lives better. I know, it’s a tough one. Even professional copywriters struggle with it! But it makes a HUGE difference. Don’t just list the features of your product or service, tell prospects what it will do for them. (Feature: 24-hour towing available. Benefit: Immediate assistance anytime when your car breaks down!) To combine the point above with this one, it’s a good idea to include benefits in your sub headlines. That way, if visitors are rushing and only scanning, they’ll still come away with an understanding of how your business can improve their lives.
7. A call to action.
I’m always surprised at how many businesses leave this simple item off of their website and other marketing materials. Don’t assume that interested prospects intuitively know what step to take next — they don’t! A clear call to action helps nudge them in the right direction. If it “pops” in a completely different color from everything else on the page, even better because the visitor’s eye will be pulled there involuntarily.
8. Trust items.
Show your visitors that you are real people with an About Us page that includes a short history of your company and photos of you and your staff. People want to know who they’re dealing with! Make sure to also include testimonials and reviews from happy customers as “social proof” — 88% of consumers say they trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation!
9. Your contact info and phone number featured prominently.
Including your physical address and phone number — where visitors can easily find it and reach out to you — tells people you are a legitimate business that welcomes interaction. Have you ever clicked on a website that didn’t offer any contact information? I don’t know about you, but I rarely bother myself to hunt down their phone number or email address. No thanks!
10. Lead capture forms.
This is a biggie. If you want to turn your website visitors into leads, you have to collect their contact information so you can follow up. But people are reluctant to give away their information, especially on the internet! Make it worth their while by offering them something of value (for FREE) in return — it could be free samples, a free quote, a newsletter subscription, you name it!
And don’t ask for too much right off the bat. According to HubSpot, a lead capture form with only 3 fields (meaning you only ask for three bits of their information) will get 10% more conversions than a form with 6 fields. You really only need their name and email address to follow up. You can ask for more information later! We ask for email only and then politely ask for more once we get that. If we don’t get more right away on our site, we email them what they wanted and ask again.
11. Good button copy.
The button on your lead-capture form should entice prospects to claim your offer by telling them what they will receive. Don’t say “Submit.” Nobody wants to “submit” anything! Say “Send my free samples!” or “Start my FREE subscription!”
I know, it’s a lot to think about — but it’s 2016, and 96% of prospects will go online before they contact you and that means:
Your website IS your business.
If your website isn’t working to increase your prospects’ trust, you’re LOSING sales, period.
PostcardMania can create a beautiful, affordably priced website for your business. Call one of our marketing consultants at 800-628-1804 — whether you use our services or not, the consultation is FREE!
Did I miss anything? What other aspects do you think are necessary for a business website to convert visitors into leads? Leave a comment below or email me at Joy.Gendusa@PostcardMania.com.