As a website owner, you want your website to convert visitors into clients. I’m sure you didn’t build an entire website just for the sake of playing with a website builder (although that can be fun 😉 ).
The fact is, you’ve got up to eight seconds to make a positive impression on a first-time visitor or they’re outta there, and this is if they’re a patient person.
On average, only 2% of site visitors actually take some sort of action (such as leave email address, download information, book an appointment etc.) when they first visit a site.
It usually takes an average of seven interactions to get a visitor to turn into a customer.
Don’t let these stats scare you though. Tweaking your website in order to boost your conversions is easier than you think.
There are a lot of things to keep in mind when it comes to having a website that converts visitors into customers.
But don’t worry. We’ve put together a simple checklist, so you can see exactly what it takes for your website to make a killer first impression online.
1. Your site needs to load quickly because people want information fast.
Studies show that if your site takes longer than three seconds to load, the majority of visitors will leave.
You can use Google PageSpeed. This is a tool by Google and it will show you what’s causing your website to load slow. You type in your URL, and then it will analyze it and give you a score.
If you have an amazing score then great, you’re doing a good job. If you have a terrible score, it will show you what to fix to improve your site loading speed.
The second thing you should consider is using the Google AMP framework.
A lot of people are coming to your site on mobile devices. Mobile devices, in many cases, will make up the majority of your traffic, so why not make your website load super-fast for mobile users?
The way you can do this by using the Google AMP framework.
The third thing you want to consider is using a CDN.
A CDN is a content delivery network. What that means is, they can take your website and they can put it all over the globe.
So, let’s say someone is visiting your website from China. Even though your website is hosted in the US, they’ll replicate your site and put it on a server in China, so that way all the people in China can see your website right away.
They do this but putting your website in all major regions. They even put your website in all major regions within the US.
This allows you to target potential local business clients from not just your region or state, but around the country, and even internationally.
Last but not least, you need to cache your webpages. If you have a WordPress blog this is really simple. You can use a plugin called W3 Total Cache.
If you don’t have a WordPress blog, reach out to your developer or your server hosting company, and they’ll tell you how you can cache your website.
If you do those things, your site is going to load faster, and you’re going to grow your sales, because when people come to your site, they won’t get frustrated any more, which means they are more likely to take action and book an appointment, leave their contact details, purchase etc.
2. Your site should be easy to navigate.
Confusing navigation and broken links mean frustrated visitors. Don’t let poor navigation hurt your site’s usability.
There’s a perfect balance to hit when contemplating your website design. You don’t want it looking too “old school” because your visitors might think your business is falling behind on the latest marketing ideas and solutions.
On the other hand, if it’s too “flashy” there’s a risk of not being taken seriously. So, this is something to keep in mind when outlining a sketch of your website design.
Take these points into consideration when it comes to your navigation bar:
Logo – place it at the top of the page so guests know they’ve come to the right place. And make it clickable so it doubles as an easy way to get to the homepage.
Contact tab – a definite “must-have” so potential clients know how to reach you. You basically want to make it as convenient as possible for your visitors to reach you.
If they have to search for anything, especially something as basic and important as your contact info, they’ll move right along to the next website.
Include a search feature –
You already know you only have a few seconds to grab people’s attention, so make sure your home page is on point. The overall all “look” should be attractive and engaging, containing powerful images that speak your message, with well-written text the purpose of luring them in and sparking their interest.
The navigation bar should be “in your face”, easy to detect and present on every page.
Links to your social media accounts – double up on these and place them both in the top right section of the header using icons, and in the footer of your website as well.
3. Have a great services page.
This deserves to be a step on its own because it’s a crucial section of your website that can make or break your conversion factor.
The first thing to keep in mind is to be clear with your offers. It won’t really do you much good if you try to do everything for everybody and then pile it all together on the same page.
Package it up. Create packages of the most common ways people want to work with you. So rather than having an unclear offer which says “I work for this much per hour and you can ask me to do anything.”, have a starter, medium and a deluxe type of packages with different pricing and services included.
Add a form of scarcity or urgency. I’m not talking about the fake type of scarcity as a marketing tool in order to incentivize people to buy.
I’m talking about when you are running a service-based business and you’re naturally limited as to how many people you can work with and how long it takes you to finish that project. So this is a real scarcity and urgency factor. You don’t have to make it up.
Or even have a counter which states “We can take on 2 more clients for this service at this time”
If you don’t, visitors will think to themselves, “oh yeah I can contact them any time”, and when they do. they’ll be surprised you’re not replying the same second and not starting their project right away.
It’s possible they’ll leave a bad review just based on that. So you can see why this is so important.
Have a strong call to action:
– The worst thing you can put at the bottom of your services page is a weak “email me” message with your email address. This is bad because you’re asking them to leave your website, and it’s too many steps for them with copy and paste the email address, and write up the entire email.
– Slightly better is a contact form. First, you need to check that it actually works and that you receive the info contained in the filled out form.
But even this is a weak call to action because it’s just a blank space, and it’s asking for too much effort from the prospect. They’re not sure how much to write in that big blank message portion of the contact form.
They might put loads of effort into writing out all of the information that they need about the project, which could end up a complete waste of time because all you needed was a bare minimum of details.
– The best way to go about it is to add a questionnaire. Simply ask enough questions that allow you to get back to them with a rough estimate for the service.
3 or 4 questions that make it clear to them that there is no obligation to working with you, but that answering these question will give you a better idea of how you can help them.
It’s good to have an explanation saying: “Fill out this questionnaire and I will get back to you with a rough quote so that you’ve got an idea regarding the price of this project.”
This will give them a clear idea of why they are filling this out and ensures them that they are not wasting their time.
4. Incorporating keywords is a must for your site.
5. Calls to action.
6. You need HD photos and video.
Adding photos and video to your site creates organic content that search engines love, so it’s not just about making your site look good.
Images are a logical and popular choice when it comes to drawing people in and sending your message across.
While some of these aesthetic choices may seem minor to you, they can indeed have a big impact on your overall bottom line.
7. Add social buttons.
Social buttons on your site encourage users to interact with you on your social platforms, letting you learn more about your customer.
They also allow you to show customers another side of your business, and engage with your base in an entirely different way.
Something to keep in mind is that your social media accounts can speak even more about your business than your website. So make sure they are complete before linking them to your website.
8. Your site needs a blog.
A blog is essential, yet having a blog became so common that people have become a bit desensitized to it.
However, a blog will help your website rank, and it remains a good form of communication with your customers.
So here are 5 tips on how to write engaging blog posts:
Number one – Make it look like a conversation as much as you can. Using the words “you” and “I” helps with this. You don’t really wanna look like you’re giving someone a lecture.
If they feel like you are just having a conversation with them as you would with a friend, they will be more likely to read, comment and engage with your content.
Number two – a lot of people just sort of skim through the content. Well, you can use this to your advantage and use sub-headings to grab their attention.
This way, people can get the essence of your content by just skimming through. They can also just easily choose the part that interests them the most and read it.
Number three – using a summary at the end of your blog posts allows readers to go straight to this portion and decide if they would like to read the rest.
This is actually based on website visitors reading patterns, and can work very well to keep them engaged.
Number four – if a picture says a thousand words and you have a thousand pictures, you have …a lot of words!
Do try to include relevant images that get your point across in every blog post you publish. They will draw attention and increase the percentage of people who stick around to read the rest.
Number five – add actionable content. Make sure you write your content so it provides solutions and actionable steps on the topic you are writing about.
9. Mobile mobile mobile.
It’s now more important than ever to have your site mobile friendly. Google favors sites which are mobile-optimized, and ranks them higher in organic search, which means more free traffic for your site.
There are more than 7 billion mobile devices in the world, and your site should look good on all of them.
10. You need to track information about your visitors.
11. Your site needs to be regularly updated.
12. Newsletter and thank you page.
Converting your visitors into clients is going to require a persistent approach. Place an opt-in form on your website which will subscribe them to your newsletter, preferably in exchange for a piece of value they can use.
Where to place the opt-in form? On every page and on the sidebar of your blog. This increases your chance of reaching your clients and converting them into sales.
Use your newsletter to stay in touch with your subscribers and build a relationship with them.
KLT – if they Know, Like and Trust you, it’s much more likely they will purchase your services.
the thank you page would be the page they get redirected to after they opt-in to your newsletter. You can use this page to thank them right in the headline.
If you’re not too camera-shy, place your welcome video right below it and greet them.
If you gave them some goodies in exchange for their email, place it underneath the video.
(If you are camera-shy, you can outsource video creation on Fiverr for a very low cost.)
13. Incorporate testimonials.
It will show visitors you can actually do what you say you can, and provide them with social proof. Your Home page and your Service page are a great place to incorporate your testimonials. This will really strengthen your credibility, so be sure to use them.
There should be nothing random about your business website. It’s a science and your business can use all the fuel to blast that success rocket straight out of the Solar system.
So make sure to go over this checklist to, wouldn’t you know it, check if your website is as good as it can be 😉