No matter what business you are in. No matter if your income is generated online, in-person, through the mail, or left in an unmarked envelop in an unregistered storage locker in untraceable dollar bills. There is one thing all businesses need to survive in our current market: effective websites.
You might feel like the only businesses that sell their products online need modern and user-friendly websites. If you’re a small town plumber who generates business via word-of-mouth, why would throwing money at developing your websites matter? Well, boys and girls, we see why you arrived at that conclusion, but you’re incorrect. You see, 92% of purchases that Americans make are researched online before any money trades hands. You know this is true, because you yourself type “Good plumbers in such and such gosh-forsaken place” into your favorite search engine before you hire a plumber.
Your target market will size up your business and make a purchasing choice based on the quality of your web design and the websites of your competitors. You want your website to have that “IT” factor that draws new customers in. Here are a few tips for doing that:
- Make your website SEO-friendly.
Just as you use Google to search for potential providers in every purchasing decision you make (such as our plumber example, above), so does the rest of the human population. When an online user searches for a product or service they need, about 70% of the time, they skim past the paid advertisements and choose one of the “organic” links below. Of the non-advertisement links, the higher your website is ranked, the more likely it is that the user will choose your page. If your page is first, there’s a 33% chance that you’ll get some traffic. The second link gets 18% of the clicks. Each following link gets less and less. If your page in on the second page of search results, there’s a 70% chance you’ll like the Rolling Stones; you can’t get no satisfaction.
The point of SEO (which stands for search engine optimization, for those who care) is to give your website all of the attributes that Google uses to determine the website ranking for related web searches. There is a whole science behind this, but we suggest using a good SEO service to get you started. If you are looking for a good SEO service, try Googling it. The irony of this situation is killing us.
- Make your website mobile-friendly.
As of 2014, there are more online users accessing the World Wide Web from their mobile device than from a computer. If your website is not mobile friendly, you’re mobile users will check out your page and then abandon it. You’ll lose potential business before you even get it. In fact, being mobile-friendly is so important that with the last Google-algorithm update, they added a feature that tests out the mobile-friendliness of your website and deducts ranking points if it’s not up to par.
- Make your website action-friendly.
Let’s say a potential customer is looking for your product or service and enters it in Google, you’re website comes up first. Congratulations, your website is SEO-friendly. Most likely, they’ll be coming to your from their phone, but that’s no problem, because you’re page is mobile-friendly, right? These are honest-to-goodness hot leads; they’re business ripe for the picking. Now let’s say that you make them take extra steps to give you their business. They have to get off the interwebs and call you. They have to come to your store to see your product. Let’s say that your competitor on the other hand, has everything ready for said client to sign up for their product or service on their website, at the click of a button. Who do you think they’re going to go with?
We are in a convenience-driven market. It’s important to make your call-to-action the most obvious and intuitive feature on your website, so that your future customers don’t have to put forth any effort to hand you their money.
Every business must have a good website to stay relevant in our tech-driven market. But not just any website, they must have a user-friendly, SEO-friendly, mobile-friendly, and action-friendly website.