Is your website giving you great results? Are you thinking you may need some major reconstruction?
You might just need a “tune-up” — of the 4 items that affect leads or sales:
1. OFFERS: For the Biggest Change in Results, Remodel Your Offer
NEED MORE SALES? A more attractive Offer (the special reason I should buy NOW) can improve your sales results today.
- Can you offer free shipping (which may cost you less than a discount on the price)?
- Can you include a free gift with order (a sample size of some other product or a free service)?
- Can you give the customer a discount for buying more than 1 (or for buying in quantity)? Or a “buy X, get X free” offer (buy a year, get 2 months free, etc.).
NEED MORE LEADS? When your goal is a lead, your Offer has to really appeal to your particular audience — and be visible on your website. If you’re struggling with lead generation, it might not be a problem with your “website” per se. You might just need more targeted Offers — useful Content that may help or educate your target. So if you’re not happy with your leads, try changing your Offer FIRST. Consider:
- Is your Offer valuable to your audience — something they could really use? That means it shouldn’t be something your prospect could get elsewhere without providing contact information (like a product brochure or video available publicly).
- Are you relying on a “non-offer” like “for more information, “contact us”? Contact Us is only used by those few who are ready to talk to a sales person today. But the majority of visitors to your website aren’t ready to talk to a sales person. If you don’t have an Offer that appeals to them, you’ll miss capturing contact information from the majority of your visitors.
- Is your Offer targeted to your particular target audience? If you’re getting leads from the wrong audience (or they’re unqualified), it’s likely because your Offer is too generic, and doesn’t discuss how to solve the problems most important for your particular audience.
If you’re doing blog posts and hoping to drive leads or sales, do you have an attractive Offer on each blog page in a prominent location?
2. CONTENT: Construct the Words to Sell
If you’re struggling with lead generation or sales, it could be a problem with your actual website Content.
Are you “merchandising” your lead generation Offers — by clearly and prominently promoting the benefits?
- It’s not enough to say, “Download our free report” – your audience needs at least bulleted points of what they’re going to learn from that report.
- Maybe you’re offering a free trial of your service. Tell me the benefits I’ll enjoy during the free trial or the cool features I can try out. Be SPECIFIC and don’t assume your audience knows what the benefits are or how your product or service works.
When your goal is a sale, your product Content is key. So when your sales response is low, you haven’t effectively answered the “why should I buy yours?” question. Or you haven’t proven the VALUE of the benefits of your product or service for the price, compared to the competition.
This is the most common problem with copy: you deliver all the benefits of your “category” of solution — but your copy recites the same benefits as the competition. What you’re missing is the reason a visitor should buy YOURS.
- Be sure it’s clear what unique benefits or combination of benefits you offer.
Many companies seem to be afraid of Content – they’re afraid of creating “too much Content” because “prospects don’t read.” Actually, prospects don’t read useless Content or Content that wastes the prospect’s time.
But most prospects aren’t on your website for entertainment or to pass the time. They’re on your website to accomplish a task— to solve a problem or get their key questions answered. Be sure your Content clearly delivers the answers.
3. NAVIGATION: Build Clear Website Navigation to Answer Visitor Questions
If your visitors don’t spend much time on your site or visit a low number of pages, it could be that they can’t easily find what they’re looking for. And that unclear navigation can cause low leads and low sales.
Can your audience easily find what they’re looking for on your website? The easy test of this is to:
- Make a simple list of your key types of visitors
- For each visitor, list the key questions they’re likely looking to answer on your website
- Is it clear EXACTLY where the visitor should go to get each of those key questions answered? You never want to make a visitor say, “I wonder if that could mean . . .” That’s always a sign that your navigation isn’t clear.
Don’t limit yourself to creating one-word names in your menu if that’s what your web designer specified. Take control of this key strategic element of your website, and create navigation that’s clear to your audience(s).
For most websites (especially if your site is built in WordPress or similar Content Management System), changing your navigation can usually be accomplished without creating an entirely new website.
- If your website is missing actual Content that answers your key visitor questions, then you may need to add additional Content or pages.
4. PAGE LAYOUT: Focus Your Design on Response
The specific design of a website page can absolutely affect response positively when it emphasizes key elements on the page such as the Offer.
Similarly, design can also have a negative effect on response when:
- You rely on “sliders” or “rotating banners” to deliver key messages and Offers. In general, the first slider can generate reasonable click-through. The second slide usually gets a click-through rate similar to links found at the bottom of the page (seen by typically a small percentage of visitors). Any slides past the second slide typically get no response at all, because few visitors are waiting for the rotating banners to get past the second slide OR
- The Offers are buried “below the fold” – too far down on the page.
You can easily move your Offers to a more prominent location on your pages, and be sure that your key messages appear in a static location on your page.
It’s important to remember that “creating a new website” may not improve leads or sales – if you don’t have a better plan for smart Offers, Content that actually sells, navigation that answers visitor questions, and design that moves the eye to the Offers.
Improve these 4 elements first – which is something you can do today — without major construction.
Excerpted from our new book, “The Results Obsession: ROI-Focused Digital Strategies to Transform Your Marketing” now available on Amazon! If you’re considering improving your website, this book will walk you step-by-step through the process.
Learn more about The Results Obsession and see the Table of Contents
The book includes chapters on: accurately diagnosing your opportunities for improvement using Google Analytics, identifying why your customers buy, Lead Generation Strategies, crafting Lead Generation and Sales Offers, planning and editing the best copy of your life in all media, evaluating your website navigation, website design and content, and improving your website copy.