If you don’t look after your employees they don’t do a good job. If they aren’t trained, don’t have the right tools, are ignored most of the time – they will stop working. Your website is the same.
website could work hard to help your organisation achieve your goals – BUT only if you’ve put all the essentials in place. If you think you only have a website because everyone does and you can’t compete without one, you haven’t even scratched the surface.
Your website can:
Polish your reputation
The look and feel of your website says as much to visitors as the content. If it looks out-of-date, that impacts on their perception of your organisation. That means you need to update the design at regular intervals – at least every three years.
The message need to be reader-focused. That means it should not be all about you – check for how many instances there are of ‘we’, ‘us’ and ‘our’, in relation to the number of ‘you’ and ‘your’. People engage more strongly when you’re talking about them and what they want, rather than what you do.
Give value. That doesn’t mean reducing your prices; it means sharing your expertise on your blog and other material you offer on your website.
Get all this right and your reputation will shine.
Give great customer service
Usability (UX) sounds boring, but if it’s hard for your visitor to find what they want they don’t stay around. Your website needs to be really user-friendly. What do people want to know, find, explore? Make sure it’s easy for them to do what they want.
If you say ‘get in touch’, put the phone number or a link to the enquiry form (or both) right there.
Make accessing everything easy, add a chatbot to answer basic questions. Don’t make people search for things – so ensure your contact details are on every page (maybe in the banner header).
Convert visitors into leads
Understand your visitor. What do they want most?
Make sure the navigation is idiot-proof – no fancy names on tabs, that the visitor has to work out what that means. Put links to other pages in relevant places so people don’t have to scroll around to find the menu.
Give enough information to reassure potential clients – and invite them to take the next step. Don’t forget your calls to action on EVERY page.
Make life easy, don’t ask people to jump through hoops to get what they’re looking for.
Offer something of value to your typical client in exchange for their email address. This way you can grow a list of people who are already interested and then influence them over time. If someone is not ready to buy today, you’re still in touch when they are ready.
Generate important data
Install analytics and learn from them. Find out where people bounce from and look at those pages and decide if you could update the page to be ‘stickier’.
How long do people stay on your site? How many pages do they typically visit? What is the enquiry to visitor ratio? How many and which links are clicked?
And – a word about links. If you ignore your website once it’s up and running it will eventually start performing less well. Links do get broken (who knows why?) – and it’s good practice for someone to review the site regularly and check all the links are still working.
If you have dozens of pages, this might be something several people get involved in, where each person is responsible for a specific set of pages. This exercise should be done at least once a month.
Stay engaged with your website and it will pay dividends. It’s an important part of your organisational strategy.