Working towards generating good website traffic is important but what is more important is being able to convert that traffic into sales. It is the desire of all business owners that their business website will bring in more leads and sales, even the ones who have a high volume of traffic on their websites wish to know which of those clicks resulted in sales. Getting more sales is usually the main purpose of most business websites and having a website that converts traffic is of utmost importance. Although a website may have a lot of traffic it does not necessarily mean that the website will be resulting in an equally high rate of conversion.
The conversion rate is basically the ratio of visitors that actually buy a product or service to those that visit the website but don’t. The key to having a good ratio of sales to that of the number of people visiting your website comes down to how well the customers’ expectations are met.
When prospective customers visit your website, are they going to be satisfied with what they see? – The first impression is usually the lasting impression. How does your website serve them? And are you giving each visitor what they want?
Below are some points to consider so you can increase conversions through your website by improving certain design aspects as well as addressing the above questions.
What purpose does your website serve?
If you are designing a business website that is going to display your product or service and you want it to bring in customers it is very important to identify and clearly define the purpose of your website. Being able to identify the core purpose of your website will help in designing it so that your visitors will see its relevance to them.
Understanding why you have the business website and what you want that website to achieve will help you proceed to the next step, making your website do what you want it to do. It is usually better if a website is trying to achieve two or three basic things rather than have multiple objectives, this way the website will focus on the few goals it has and will be more likely to achieve them.
For instance most e-commerce websites have only one purpose which is to make more online sales, whereas the purpose of a service based business website would be to get more enquiries or inform the potential customers of the expertise and experience in a particular service offered.
The simplicity of the website should not be limited to just the core functions but must also be incorporated in the design. For example the navigation structure within the website must easy to use especially since the attention span of visitors online is usually very small (mostly within a minute). The more time a visitor has to spend looking for what they need and the harder it is to find, the more likely they are to abandon the website and leave.
Online attention spans are known to be very small and a good menu structure that is easy to navigate, will hence work well. Statistics show that if visitors to a website cannot find what they want within three clicks they would leave. This is even true for e-commerce websites, the sales funnel (path from landing page to checkout page) must ideally be within 3 clicks – so a visitor must not be more than three clicks away from the product page and the ‘buy’ or ‘checkout’ button.
The aesthetic appeal of a website (in terms of appearance) and its initial impact on the visitor has a large part to play with regard to successful conversions as well. If visitors to your website are not impressed by what they see and if your site does not feel right to visitors (seem genuine and professional) they are unlikely to stick around to send through an enquiry or purchase a product.
In most cases the visual appeal of a website depends on how well it is designed. Although it is good to have a sizable design/development budget or significant web design experience, it is not essential to creating a unique, good looking and effective website. Even a smaller budget and little design experience can result in quite a good looking website, but it comes down to thorough planning and research.
Regardless of your budget or web design expertise, it is important to do some research into which elements you must include on your website as well as look into your competitors’ websites to see what they do properly. This will give you a foundation as to how you want your website to appear
It is vital that you incorporate elements into your website that will serve the core functions that were decided earlier and this must be done in a simple and effective manner. A mistake that business owners often make when it comes to the website is overloading it with unnecessary content. For example crowding your webpage with sales messages is likely to overwhelm the visitor and result in them leaving. A major thing that affects conversions of a website is its simplicity – if a visitor comes to your website through an Ad on Google or through facebook they usually have one question that they want answered, and being able to effectively answer that question on the landing page whilst you have their attention is extremely important.
As long as you research your options thoroughly and carefully plan the functions and features of your website it is not difficult or expensive to design an effective website.