Your website says a lot about your business.
When customers interact with your brand for the first time online, your website has the power to make a strong first impression that leads to a sale, or create a negative experience that causes consumers to avoid your services entirely in favor of competitors.
Every business is different and there are a number of elements to consider when designing a web page experience for a conversion, depending on factors like your target audience, product and industry. Luckily there are some common issues that apply to many businesses that are relatively straightforward and painless to fix.
Here are 7 ways your website could be costing you money through lost sales & growth opportunities and the steps you can take to fix it.
1. Website Not Optimized for Mobile
According to Google Statcounter, as of April 2018 mobile & tablet internet usage worldwide has surpassed desktop computers 55% to 44%.
Google is shifting search results to rank according to a mobile-first index. This doesn’t mean that desktops are no longer considered, but it does mean a mobile-friendly website will be given priority in the very near future and that you should consider incorporating SEO for Google Mobile-First Indexing.
What does this mean for your website? It means that sites without mobile-friendly design and layout will be ranked lower. For some, it may mean a drastic drop in organic search traffic. If the site is ready for smartphones and tablets, then it may also mean a considerable improvement in search rank.
Solution: Update your website to make it responsive & easy to access on mobile & tablet devices. If that’s not possible you may need to consider a full website redesign.
2. High Bounce Rates From Google Search
A bounce rate is the percentage of visitors that enter your website only to hit the back button and “bounce” back to Google search. This is a normally a strong indication that your page is mismatched with your visitor’s intent. Broken or missing pages (404) can also cause this issue.
A typical bounce rate can range between 20-60%, but this generally depends on your industry and type of website.
When Google sees high bounce rate on particular pages, it places you lower in the search rankings, resulting in less visits and potential customers.
Solution: Update your SEO page titles to better reflect the content on your website & who would benefit from it.
3. Pages Take Too Long to Load
People are impatient in general, but this is especially true online. The average visitor expects your web page to load fast, really fast. As many as 53% of users will abandon a page if it takes longer than three seconds to load from a mobile device. This means you’re essentially cutting your income in half from those who use smartphones.
Speed optimization is a very common challenge for small business owners. Despite it being straightforward, few developers take the time to perform speed optimization when building websites for clients. Besides costing you visitors, Google also penalizes sites with slow load times and drops your rankings in search, similar to the penalty with non mobile friendly sites above.
Solution: Check your image and video sizes and use a plugin like wp smush to optimize images, which can have a major impact on page load times.
Optimize your pages to load in less than 4 seconds. Consider a CDN like Cloudfare which can load your pages faster through a content distribution network vs a single server.
This can sometimes be a tricky task and may require an optimization expert.
4. Low Conversion Rates on Sales & Signup Pages
Improving conversion rates on your lead and sales pages can dramatically increase your revenue, with the even the smallest of changes resulting significant differences. What’s great about this approach is you don’t need new people to visit your website, you can make the improvements to existing campaigns and see the benefits.
Just like with bounce rates and time spent on page, conversion rates tend to be industry specific. 1-5+% is considered average, but it’s going to vary based on what you sell and who’s going to buying it. To offer a single reason why your conversion rate is under performing is difficult without first seeing your website.
More often than not, it’s a variety of issues causing the problem instead of just one thing. Elements like messaging, page design, call to action, social proof, and adequate incentive should all be considered on under performing lead generation pages.
Solution: Design your landing pages for users to do achieve one main objective (like a sign up, subscribe, or outright sale). To uncover the optimal messaging and design, multi-variate testing is recommended in your lead generation & advertising campaigns.
5. Not Appealing to Your Target Audience
Does your website copy speak to your audience in their language or your language? Are you using visual assets your visitors can identify with?
Many businesses think that by targeting a wide range of customers (a one size fits all approach) they will increase their exposure and odds of making the sale, but as you know the exact opposite is true. However when you try to appeal to everyone at once, you appeal to no-one.
if you’re Are you selling to more than one audience? Ideally you’ll want to create separate landing pages for each target audience segment, better known as buyer personas.
Solution: Create different landing pages to address separate audience personas. Use language that your customers use and uncover everything you can about your target market.
6. Website Content isn’t Easy To View
Did you know that most people scan web pages instead of reading them word for word? Chances are if you have “walls of text” they are not being read and your messaging is not getting through to your prospects. To make sure your messaging is being taken in, try to break up text into easily consumable sections with things like headings, sub headings, bullet points, and lists.
About 47% of consumers will view up to five pieces of content from a company before talking contacting a salesman, so it’s important to make sure your content is well written and formatted for your prospects
Solution: Make sure your pages & posts are easy to read and scan through. Focus on short paragraphs of 2-3 sentences, using lists, and bullet points to convey your message without losing reader attention.
Breaking up long blog posts and guides with headings, sub-headings, lists, bullet points, and other visual assets. In addition to images, you can also utilize graphs, charts, info graphics or other representations of data to get the point across and make it stick
7. Out Of Date Website Design
What does the website above make you think of when you first glance at it? For many people the word “cheap” and “disorienting” comes to mind.
Now think about your website, what does it make people of think of when they see it for the first time?
A successful website acts like a member of your sales team, working to inform customers of products and services, answer common questions before they’re asked, and highlight the reasons why they should do business with you over your competitors.
Design tells a story about your brand, and an outdated website can convey negative imagery to your visitors about and turn them off the idea of doing business with you. Small inconsistencies that may not seem important on the surface can add up quickly and have MAJOR implications with the trust and credibility of your audience.
Solution: Keep your site up to date with regular maintenance/updates and make sure the information on your site is both current and beneficial to potential customers.
Hopefully you were able to find some of the insights above effective in pinpointing areas for improvement on your website that could lead to a significant increase in conversions and sales for your business.
If you need help with a new website or brand identity, Highly Persuasive is a full service branding & marketing agency for SME’s based in Bangkok, Thailand.