Imagine that you’ve spent weeks or even months working on your new website. You’ve built it from scratch and it’s finally live. Now you can sit back and wait for the magic to happen.
So you wait and wait and wait. Checking your analytics regularly, you watch as the visitor numbers steadily increase over time.
But… nothing’s actually happening. No one buys your product, or signs up to your email list, or downloads your free ebook. In other words, there’s no action.
So what should you do? How do you convert a casual visitor into a loyal customer and brand advocate?
From a CTA to a conversion
Your website should go beyond being purely informational; each page should compel a visitor toward some kind of action. Otherwise, what is the point of an online presence?
Easyspace has some great advice in this regard: 10 simple yet effective tips to improve your website’s conversion rate. But first, real quick, just what is a conversion rate?
A website conversion rate, simply put, is the percentage of your website visitors who take an action, such as subscribing to your blog or writing a testimonial for your company. The action you want them to take depends on your business goals.
Here’s what you can do to improve your website’s conversion rate:
1. Tell them who you are, what you do, and what problem you can solve for them.
Online, attention is incredibly fleeting, so you have only seconds to do this. Keep it short and simple with something that encourages them to take action straight away or at least read on for more information.
- Consider having a prominent headline on your site that concisely explains what you do.
- Remember that visitors may land on any page of your site, so don’t just focus on your home page.
2. Include your contact information on every single page.
This is a must. Imagine coming across a great website that claims to offer exactly what you need. So the next logical step would be to get in touch with the individual or business, right? Don’t make people have to search!
Display one or more of the following on every page (perhaps in a sidebar, right on top, or prominently in the footer section) so that it’s easy for people to communicate with you: a phone number, email address, message box, live chat option, Skype address and/or social media links.
3. Have a clear goal for each page.
Each page should have its own focused objective. For example, if you have a “Buy Now” page, keep you content focused on that—don’t distract the user by unnecessarily linking to another page or CTA.
Additionally, be consistent with colors on your site (e.g. using green for calls to action, orange for links, etc.). This will help visitors to know what’s expected of them.
4. Clarity and simplicity is essential to an effective website.
Often with web pages, less is more; so keep your message clear and your pages simple. Don’t go overboard with information or visuals, but ensure that visitors have everything they need to know to perform an action.
Furthermore, don’t write for yourself or in a way that sounds like you’re talking at someone; opt for a conversational tone yet keep it professional. And remember to use uncomplicated, jargon-free language.
5. Showcase your recommendations.
Including testimonials from happy clients on your site helps to build trust with potential customers because it’s a form of “social proof”. Plus, a glowing review can be that final push that someone needs to purchase from you.
You can try out a page solely dedicated to testimonials, or perhaps include a short recommendation at the bottom of every page.
6. Use the Halo Effect to build your credibility.
According to Easyspace, the Halo Effect is “a well-documented social-psychology phenomenon that causes people to be biased in their judgements by transferring their feelings about one attribute on something to other, unrelated, attributes”.
So how do websites usually do this? Well one way is to include the logos of respected, high-profile entities on your site. For example, if you accept payments through the website, then include the logos of Paypal, Visa and Mastercard—these will help you gain trust.
7. Don’t hide your prices.
This will only discourage anyone who actually wants to make a purchase, so reduce the number of clicks that they have to make in order to buy something. If you have a variety of prices for different packages, then make that clear too.
8. Highlight your CTA(s).
Your call to action on every single page should be unmistakable, whether it’s for purchasing, signing up, downloading, etc. Make your CTA stand out through colors, special effects (within reason) and through its positioning on a page.
9. Pay attention to your visuals.
The choice of images is crucial, so use photos that reflect your brand’s personality well and that are—of course—pleasing to the eye. Also avoid overused stock images, especially those ones of strangers with annoyingly bright smiles! If you have the resources to hire a designer and/or are a budding photographer yourself, take advantage of that and showcase these talents.
10. What’s in it for me?
This last point is perhaps the most important. It should always be obvious, through your site, how a user can benefit from your service or product. Even your About page should be focused on your target audience!
Remember that ultimately, your website is not about you; it’s about the wants and needs of your visitors—and how you can help them.