August 2, 2012
Sales, Marketing, Team
If you’re going to have a presence online, it’s important to ask yourself a lot of questions. The right questions.
One thing that most business owners don’t take into account when looking for a website is “what result am I trying to achieve”? And most web designers don’t dig to find out either. In my experience, most web designers are focused too much on the design and aesthetics and not what’s important – it’s function. Don’t get me wrong, I’m by no means saying that aesthetics aren’t important. How the website looks is VERY important. But often, it’s the ONLY focus.
And when I say they don’t focus on what’s important, I’m not even talking about usability – although that’s really important too! What I’m talking about is the reason for having a website in the first place – the result.
Business owners have to be clear on whether they’re trying to generate leads with their website, whether they’re trying to make sales, or just have a presence for branding purposes. And once they know what they’re aiming for, the whole website can be designed around that single purpose.
If you’re trying to generate leads into your business, do prospects have the ability to give you their contact details? Are you even asking for them? And a great way to capture lead details is to trade them – to receive your free report/value add/complimentary gift, simply enter in your name and email address.
Most designers don’t focus on ease of use for the prospect either. Is the phone number clearly visible? Or is it buried somewhere on a contact page that’s hard to find – but at least the website looks good, right? Are you able to view it just as well on a mobile device as you can on a computer? According to Google’s “The Mobile Playbook”, 57% of users say they won’t recommend a business with a poorly designed mobile site, and 40% have turned to a competitors site after a bad mobile experience.
What you really want your website to be is an active member of your team. Whether it’s a member of your marketing team (lead generation), or sales team (making sales). What you don’t want it to be is an ‘online brochure’, which most websites are.
In fact, here is a way to think about your current website and what you’re looking for in a new one – would you hire your website if it was a person? Do they effectively communicate to your prospects? Do they capture their details? Do they make sales? Have you been holding them accountable? In fact, have they even been showing up to work? As in, can they be FOUND?
Most websites would’ve been fired a long time ago if they were an employee.
Like all good business, start with the result in mind. Work backwards to find out specifically what is required to fulfil on that result and ensure that you tick all the boxes. Especially online, where you only have three seconds to capture my attention before I move to your competition.