You know that having a website is an essential element of your marketing strategy.  But just having a presence online isn’t enough to get the results you’re seeking; your website needs to do more than just exist.  It needs to attract your target audience, engage them, educate them, and convince them to buy from you.

The problem with most small business websites is a lack of engagement. People visit your site and don’t get “pulled-in” with an interesting or relevant message. As a result, visitors leave and never come back.

Estimates say that 75% to 85% of people who visit your site will never return.  That means you spent a lot of time and money developing a website that makes a terrible first impression.

Or you spent a ton of time developing and launching a website, and haven’t bothered to update in months or even years. (check out this article to understand why frequent website updates are important.)

If you’re curious about the level of engagement on your site, take a look at your bounce rate in Google Analytics – this is one of the metrics you should be checking regularly. Anything over 70% is much too high. Ideally you want to see a number between 30% and 55%

Basically, just having a website that is easily found online is simply not enough. Visitors need to have a reason to stay on your site.

Getting visitors to stay on your site

Regardless of whether you’re building a new website from scratch or considering a redesign, there are certain key elements to include. Remember, your website is a representation of your company.  The overall design and color scheme is important, as is the message/content.

Visitors will take note of your company’s credibility, professionalism, and stability from the moment they land on your website. They’ll want to feel welcomed and know they’re in the right place to get their questions answered or their problems solved.

Getting visitors to stay on your site and connect with your brand means you must:

  • Have an understanding of your customers/clients pain points and how you solve them
  • Have an understand of the journey they take in order to solve these pain points
  • Then you’ll align your website and sales process with this journey (also known as the buyer’s journey)

If you’re thinking “I just built a website so I’d have something out there for people to find,” then it’s no wonder why your website doesn’t generate leads for your company!

Remember that a website is always in development.  The time and energy you spent on your current website was not wasted – it’s a place to start. Now you need to update your site so it’s helping you generate and nurture leads.

Elements of a great website

In addition to having a very clear and concise message, the visual and technical components are important as well.

A study conducted by Stanford University found that the visual design of a website is the first indicator of a site’s credibility.  Make sure your site’s design is consistent.  Take care to use the right types of images. Stock images are acceptable, but make sure they represent your company accurately.

Make sure you have clear navigation at the top of the site.  Visitors shouldn’t have to think too much about where they need to go; good navigation will lead them throughout the site naturally.

Finally, make sure your site is accessible for all users, regardless of what browser they’re using or what application they’re in. Your website needs to be mobile and tablet-friendly, too!

Remember, along with these design elements, the content on your site will ultimately convince visitors of your credibility. Keep your content organized and useful so your customers don’t abandon your site to move on to a competitor’s.

Have more questions about your website content or design? Leave a comment below and we’ll be sure to respond!

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