Are you achieving the results from your website that you want or need?
You may not need a new website to improve leads or sales. You might be able to improve results by addressing the 4 items about your website that drive or affect leads and sales:
OFFERS: For the Biggest Change in Results, Change the Offer
Sales response can be improved by a more attractive Offer. What will make the visitor buy yours NOW over the competition? Can you offer free shipping (which might end up costing 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 in quantity? Or a “buy X, get X free” offer (buy a year, get 2 months free, etc.).
When your goal is a lead, that lead response is driven by your Offer. If you’re struggling with lead generation, it might not be a problem with your “website” per se. It’s likely a more STRATEGIC problem – you probably need a better lead generation plan with more targeted Offers. So if you’re not happy with the leads you are or aren’t getting, try changing your Offer FIRST. Consider:
- Was your Offer seen as valuable enough for your audience to give you their contact information? 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 typically used only by those who are ready to talk to a sales person. Unfortunately, most daily visitors to your website aren’t ready to talk to a sales person. If you only have a “Contact Us”, you’ll miss capturing contact information from the majority of your visitors.
- Is your Offer targeted at your particular target audience? If you’re getting leads from the wrong audience, it’s typically 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, but there isn’t an Offer on each blog page in a prominent location, be sure to add an attractive Offer there.
CONTENT: Crafting the Words to Sell
If you’re struggling with lead generation or sales, it could be a problem with your actual website Content.
If you’re not “merchandising” your lead generation Offers by clearly and prominently promoting the benefits in your Content, your lead response will suffer.
- It’s not enough to just 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 – what benefits will I enjoy during the free trial, what can I try out? Be SPECIFIC and don’t assume your audience knows what the benefits are.
When your goal is a sale, your product Content is key. In general, when your sales response is low, you haven’t effectively answered the “why should I buy yours?” question.
This is the most common problem with copy: you deliver all the benefits of your “category” of solution, the same category that perhaps dozens of competitors offer. What you’re missing is the reason a visitor should buy YOURS.
- Does your product Content clearly answer all of the key questions your prospects might have — like dimensions, weight, ingredients, material, country of origin, warranty, compatibility with other equipment, the specific services you offer, how does the product work, etc.?
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.
Most prospects aren’t on your website for entertainment or to pass the time. They’re on your website for a specific reason — to solve a problem or get their key questions answered. Be sure your Content clearly delivers the answers.
NAVIGATION: Clear Website Navigation that Answers 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 are 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, because 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.
DESIGN: Focused 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 (where typically a small percentage of visitors scroll down to). 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.
- 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, true copy that sells, a 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.