Websites are the face and lifeblood of many small businesses. With more and more people using the Internet to find information, do research, locate businesses and select service provider and products – the Internet can be the catalyst that makes a company succeed. While anyone can throw up a website, using your site to generate ROI takes focus and effort.
Businesses wanting to capture more customers online should focus on:
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO): Google and Bing have published guidelines on what will help your site go up in the rankings. For a detailed list click here.
- Advertising: You can advertise on search pages both on the top of the page and to the right. While this costs money it can place you, visually, at the top of a key word search.
- Reputation: Customers looking for products and services online will often conduct research to find out what other people are saying. Make sure your reputation is solid by asking existing customers to write reviews.
Once visitors are on your site it is important to convert them from visitors to customers. If many people view your site, due to positive SEO, but do not book an appointment or purchase a product, you haven’t accomplished your goal.
Here are some tips for converting visitors into customers:
- Know how visitors use your site.
- Create guarantee and return policies and post online.
- Write clear and concise messages with a call to action on every page.
- Ensure your pages easily flow from one to another.
- Use purchase or appointment buttons so that a visitor can complete a transaction easily and quickly.
- Add social signal buttons like Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest to pages and posts for easy sharing. This will expose your brand to more consumers and improve your SEO.
- Incorporate reviews into the site. Whether strategic quotes or full reviews, post the positive things customers say directly on your site.
- Make it easy to pay for items by using PayPal and a traditional merchant services company. Make sure that your website is an e-commerce site prior to completing development.
Review your website on a regular basis. Talk to your customers and find out what they liked or did not like about the site. Use their feedback to make strategic edits. Remember your site and online presence is the only opportunity you have to convert online visitors to customers. Make sure it is easy to use and customer friendly.