Why You Need a Website
You’re on Instagram and Facebook, which is where everyone spends their time, right? Both platforms are free, and websites cost money. So why do you even need a website?
Your Website Legitimizes Your Brand
Think about each brand you know, from multinational corporations to the online company your friend is running out of her apartment. Does it have a website? If not, how does that affect the way you think about the business? Does it make it seem less real? Less successful? More like a hobby than a thriving enterprise?
Having a website legitimizes your business. People ask to see your website. They look for the link to your website on your social media platforms. Even if you just have a simple landing page, it separates you from everyone else who's just on social media.
Your Website Leads Customers Down Your Funnel
Generally speaking, after someone follows you on social media, the next step down the funnel he'll take is to give you his email address. Where can he do that? Your website, of course! After that, where can he buy your product/service? Again, your website!
It's very rare that someone will pay you if they've only interacted with you on social media. So if you don't already have a website, at least put up a simple landing page.
Your Website is Your Brand’s Digital Identity
Like we just talked about, in order for a customer to give you her money (or even email address), she first needs to understand and feel comfortable with your brand. While following you on social media helps, perusing your website (often quite a few times) nearly always precedes a sale.
Why? Because your website is your brand's digital identity. When people visit, it's like they're sitting down with you to learn about your business. They can quickly and easily see who you are and what you do, in a more detailed and organized way than they can on any social media channel.
Why Website Conversion is Crucial
Okay, so you need a website. Now why focus on optimizing it for conversion?
Your Website Conversion Monetizes Your Brand
It's great to develop an engaged social media following and have a positive impact on your followers' lives, but, even if this is your passion project or side hustle, making money will allow you to amplify that impact! You can use the money you make to grow your business, turn it into your full-time gig, free up resources to do more good, or donate to a worthwhile cause.
It's simple: the better your website converts visitors into paying customers, the more money you'll make.
Your Website is Where People Go to Pay You
As I mentioned before, it’s extremely rare that someone will buy your product or contract your services through social media. If you have a website, then you can showcase an online store.
If you sell physical products, potential customers can see them, learn about their details, and even read reviews left by past customers. For those of you providing services, visitors will learn exactly what you can do for them before signing up.
5 Secrets of Websites that Convert
Now that you know why you need a website and understand the importance of optimizing it for conversion, let’s take a look at five ways you can make sure you’re turning visitors into paying customers. As you’ll see, there’s a common thread woven into each secret listed below: make it easy for your visitors!
Secret #1: Clean Design
There’s a whole lot of noise in the world today - don’t add to it with your website design. Keep it simple and clean. What do I mean by clean? Not cluttered. Simple. Basic layout. Enough open space for people to feel comfortable. If someone lands on your page and is overwhelmed by everything that’s going on, he’ll immediately leave.
Limit the amount of stuff (text, images, animations, videos, etc.) visible on the screen at any one time. If you have to have a lot, make sure it’s neat and organized. A clean design is inviting and makes information enjoyable to consume.
Secret #2: Intuitive Navigation
How much do you hate visiting a website and not being able to find the information you need? It’s infuriating! Don’t make your visitors feel that way. It’s a sure fire way to get them to not only leave, but also never come back.
Clearly label each section and page of your website. Use words visitors will be familiar with, and place them in areas they’ll know to look. And oh yeah, make sure all your links work correctly!
Secret #3: Clear Message
Who are you, what do you do, and for whom do you do it? When someone lands on your website, she should be able to answer those questions almost immediately. If she doesn’t know, how can you expect her to give you her email address, let alone money?
While you want to make sure you include enough information, be wary of including too much information. Be concise. Use as little text as possible to make your points - don’t add noise.
Secret #4: Obvious Calls to Action
It may seem obvious, but in order to convert visitors into paying customers, you have to tell them to pay you! Same thing holds true if you’re trying to grow your email list - ask for their email. Always, always include multiple, obvious calls to action.
The highest converting calls to action are buttons. Buttons are meant to be clicked. When you see a button, you know you’re supposed to click it. It’s inviting and obvious. Try to use one in almost every section of your website.
To be clear, each call to action doesn’t have to point directly to a conversion. Think “Learn More” and “Show Me” buttons. Each click leads visitors further down the funnel.
While we’re on the topic of button labels, make them fun and relatable to your audience! I don’t know about you, but I’m much more likely to click a button that says “Let’s Do This!” than one that reads “Sign Up”.
Secret #5: Mobile Friendly
Over 50% of website traffic occurs on mobile devices. In other words, if your site doesn’t look good on a phone, you’re losing customers!
In the web design world, we refer to this feature as responsive. Some website builders, like Wix, make it easy to view and customize the look and feel of your mobile site.
You might have to adjust the format, image and font size, and maybe even amount of information. As you do, keep the other four secrets in mind.
Whether you’re starting from scratch or your website is in need of a makeover, deliver on these four key aspects to convert your visitors into paying customers:
Obvious Calls to Action
And if you need help, we’ll be happy to build or redesign your website for you!