Creating a website is one thing, but getting people to click, read and stay is an entirely new ball game. So many websites have come and gone, not because they were poorly made, but because nobody was visiting. The popular idea that you’d automatically get customers the moment you get a website out is pure myth. What makes some websites succeed and what causes others to fail? Here are five of the most common reasons you’re not bringing new customers in.
- You don’t know your audience.
You don’t make a website to make your board of directors happy, or to make yourself happy. The main objective of a site is to entice would-be customers to come and stay. Thus, you should make THEM happy. Successful websites are so because they first researched what their audiences want and never stops looking for ways to understand changing market appetites. For your site to get attention and to remain relevant for months and years after, you have to know what people want.
- Your site isn’t usable.
User experience is crucial to your website’s success. It could be something as simple as a site that takes ages to load, which discourages people from staying. Remember that the Internet audience has a very short attention span and can easily click X and go somewhere else if they feel their needs aren’t attended to immediately. Amazon, for instance, improved its user experience by ensuring that its pages take only 0.1 second to load. This move boosted its earnings by 1%, leading it to profit of almost $44 billion in 2016 alone.
- It isn’t aesthetically pleasing.
Aside from speed and content, your website should be easy on the eyes. You want to provide a positive experience for your audience the moment the see your first page. This is where design comes in. And it’s not just about beauty and face-value. People have to know where things are. There are plenty of websites that look like so much work has been put into them — and that’s all right. However, if people don’t know how to contact you or where to click to find out more about your services, then all the effort will be useless.
- They don’t have a reason to come back.
Trust is a big word when it comes to creating a successful website. The audience has to like you and see you as a reliable source of information. This is why a powerful About Us page matters. Don’t just paste in boilerplate text. Make it relatable by including photos of the team or connecting your audience to your active social media accounts where they can instantly engage with you. In short, don’t just be a website that lists products and services. Be a “friend.”
Another reason people will want to come back to your site is fresh content. You have to go with the times and be in the know of trends in your industry. Your content is not set in stone and will have to evolve from time to time. Keep a blog on your site so your readers can check back periodically for the latest news and updates on your products, promos and other related issues. Video blogs also work, as well as viral posts.
- You don’t focus.
The last thing you want people to think about your site is that it’s a cluttered mess. Before designing your site, ask yourself first: What do I want to achieve? What product do I want to highlight? How do I want to connect to the public? While it’s important that your website changes its content from time to time, you have to focus on a branding strategy every time.
Sure, it’s tempting to just lay out all your products and services — but that can get very confusing for your customer, not to mention annoying. Decide which of your services get the attention first and just place the others on the background (but still easily accessible). You’ll be surprised at the number of visits and returns you get if you focus.