We don’t mean to preach, and this will be the last time we say it (for now): your site is too important for quick fixes and we never do something half way. But… Sometimes, your budgets leave you on your own, and you may stand with a site for sore eyes. For those regrettable occasions, we’ve created this list of basic check points you can go through – for all of our sakes.
Many companies starting online business adopt the “just do it!” approach! Do it now! Get it up!
What they don’t realise is that all the unnecessary pressure is actually harming the whole process. AB testing or multivariate testing is an imperative part of the process which trials page layout, content and user experience.
With lead generating sites it’s important to understand the customer journey and where their drop off points are. Keep tweaking each platform; track the lot to find out why things aren’t converting, put time period controls on things to get an accurate measure of engagement.
Good Analytic Data
If you collect and analyse the right data, you have the opportunity to answer some of those critical questions such as why page views are only a couple of seconds? It could be something as simple as views coming from mobile devices are not converting because your site isn’t mobile friendly. Is it your content that’s putting people off, or simply not engaging (we’ll return to this crucial point again)?
Unlike traditional forms of media, web is organic, always changing and this needs to be budgeted for. Most big businesses understand this and are constantly adapting their sites keeping the content fresh and engaging, drawing consumers back to their site over and over again.
Converting browsers before your competitors
‘Just browsing’ customers can still be converted. First you have to understand what are they shopping for?
Are their buying decisions based on just cost? Are they looking for added value? Are they looking for a better service, or is it a mix? Once again, the right data can shed a light on many of these questions, but so can browsing the sites of your competitors. - What is their product offering. How can you adapt yours to stand out?
The competition might be running a better promotion than you, can you match it or can you offer something different?
If you have the same offering as everyone else, there are some clever ways of reminding costumers about your product.
Customer testimonials – Who better to tell your story than a satisfied customer. Customer’s trust other customer’s way more than they trust you. So make sure those happy customers of yours voice their opinion about your great services.
Media coverage – Needless to say (but we’ll do it anyway just to be sure) PR stories and media coverage are good ways of getting your message out there.
Is there a want or need for your product? Ask!
Some people get an idea in their head, think it’s amazing, then go and brand it and build a website. Then, after some time, wonder why it’s not selling.
Have you done any survey testing and market research into the product you’re selling?
This can be done quite cost effectively – don’t ask family and friends, they’ll just tell you what you want to hear. Often the best insights come from the guys on the street, who’ll give you real non-sentimental feedback. Take a video camera with you. This is a great way to judge reaction.
In case you think this might actually be your Achilles Heel, you can hire an analyst agency to help you. They will most likely give you better feedback and a better-structured approach.
How easy is the purchase process?
Usability is key to site design. If you squint, can you see all the execution buttons? Or are there too many elements on the page making it hard to find the imperative execution buttons?
An important step is to ensure, that the buying process is made as easy as possible.
You’ll often find major drop-offs when people come to filling out forms. Large forms often put off people. Better to lead clients into a four-stage process - as you fill out one part the next part is revealed. And keep it simple; don’t ask what their music tastes, are unless you are Music Company.
Umming and Arhhing?
How long are people lingering on the payment section. Are they deciding to leave? Place a time limit on the page to ignite a feeling of urgency – this can be perceived as pushy. But if the time runs out this can cue a message to ask if everything is ok. Would you like some help? Are there enough payment options for you? Would you like us to call you?
Added customer service can often help the buying decision.
Speaks for itself really. You have a 10 sec window to gain your audience’s attention. They need to be able to see what they are after (what’s on offer) fast and efficiently. Not enough engagement can lead to people getting bored and leaving.
Incidentally load times can lead to people losing interest and leaving your site, so make sure all your content (images and videos) are small enough to load quickly while still keeping the quality you wish to represent.
Are you mobile?
People use their mobiles and we know it. So whether it’s to ensure a good experience on your site or to boost your ROPO effect (Research Online Purchase offline) you need to make sure that your site is mobile friendly.
Most people shop online via mobile device after work, on the weekend – you could be missing out on your audience if you don’t have a mobile friendly platform.
Check your analytic report to give you a good idea of the traffic to your site via mobile.
Make sure you have done everything to sell
Just like in a store, you have a store assistant for a reason -helping you sell.
The net is similar. Try and persuade before they leave – for example I was looking at some cloud-based options for my backup I went to justcloud.com. I was presented with clear precise copy and a great offer that compelled me to enter the buying process. I hummed and hared and decided I would wait and search a little more. As I clicked the back button a pop up window was presented to me offering me a better discount and some extra features if I bought today. Needless to say; I purchased.
- Make the customer qualify for leaving – why are you leaving?
- Tracking: Merchants conversion pages or click outs. This can give you better insight - Offer, User experience etc.
- Get them on an email list. This could be done by offering an incentive.
- Offer them a bonus if they order via your site.
- Be memorable (so they come back) offer a bookmark icon on the site.
Are you attracting the right costumers?
Is your SEM (Search Engine Marketing) campaign working for you or against you! The development of SEM strategies is not only key to getting a lot of site hits, but the right kind of site hits from the right customers.
SEM is an imperative form of online marketing. A good SEM strategist will not only tailor a campaign to when your audience is online, but also when they are most in the mood to buy. In some cases the weekends have higher forms of social engagement then direct sale. Knowing this is key to good SEM Strategy.
A small effort can get you a long way
As the checklist reveals – there are many ways to focus your site and improve the experience for your customers. Websites that provide the best experiences, based on the best foundation of data and craftsmanship is what we do here at Valtech!
We know how much data, insights, skills, time and effort it takes and it’s certainly not a one-man job or quick fix. But if you’re falling behind on either of these check points, even the smallest efforts made to improve them, is probably worth your while.