In a world of digital domination, a schlocky website is bad for business. If you haven’t taken a look at your business’s website in a while, perhaps it’s time.
It’s common to think that your business website is a one-and-done project. But in all actuality, it deserves careful and constant pruning if you want it to deliver business results for you. Failing to keep it up to snuff can put a big damper on your ability to interact with consumers. And in today’s customer-centric marketplace, that’s bad news for your bottom line.
One Goal: Make it Convert
If a business website has one goal, it’s to convert visitors to prospects (besides driving revenue, managing your brand and increasing awareness, that is!). This makes it essential that you work hard to optimize every page for maximum conversion.
As a business owner, ensure that your site has enough information to help users make a decision and take a specific action based on the website content. That’s why it’s imperative to know what pages you need to convey the right information that will convert your visitors.
One of the most crucial factors to consider when determining what pages you need to have on your site is the industry standard.
Research and Borrow From the Industry Standard
Creativity is brilliant and most often encouraged. But one of the surest ways to know what works in is to look at what the industry leaders are doing and then copy and improve on the same model.
Do not feel pressed with the need to reinvent the wheel and come up with new ‘creative’ pages and page names. Instead, do in-depth research on how your most successful competitors are doing.
- How have they structured their websites?
- How many pages do they have?
- How are their websites designed?
The research will give you invaluable insights into what is already working in the market and how you can model the same.
It is also valuable to note that besides researching your competitors, you can also research other brands that are targeting the same demographic as you, even if they’re selling different products or services. These brands have also found what works for that particular demographic, and as such, you can learn a thing or two from them as well.
To give you a place to start in evaluating your site, here are the pages every business website should have, and why.
1. The Homepage
The homepage is one of the most important pages on your website. Its purpose is to answer a few critical questions your visitors have when they land on your website:
- Do I need this?
- Does it resonate with me?
- Will it add value in my life?
- How is this brand different from the other brands I’ve come across?
If your homepage can’t answer these questions in the simplest way possible, you risk losing the visitor to your competitor.
- Make sure to use bold headlines and subheadings.
- Design the page and format the copy in a way that makes it easy for visitors to find what they’re looking for.
- Make sure to utilize negative space. Negative space is the white space or blank space on the homepage. If used correctly, it can give your website an elegant feel and at the same time, direct your visitors to precisely what you want them to see.
2. About Us Page
The “About Us” page has incredible potential to convert visitors. Sadly, very few websites are designed to maximize that potential.
Typically, most businesses put up an image of their team or the founder, a few lines about their story, and copy-paste their mission and vision. Period.
If that’s what you’ve done with your website, pay close attention.
The “About Us” page has a significant effect on the user experience. Visitors click on the page to answer one critical question: does this company resonate with me?
Usually, when people visit you’re “About Us” page, they’re giving you an opportunity to persuade them.
It’s like a person asking you, “Please tell me more about you, so that I can decide whether I like you or not and if I can do business with you.”
In a real-life scenario, if a person asked you that question, would you start telling them about your mission, vision, and boring stories about your business? No! Why then would you bore them with that information on your website?
The “About Us” page is where you get to connect with the visitor: hook their emotions, entertain them, and make sure that they become your fan for years to come.
Even if you sell something that might not have an emotional element, like software, tell stories about your work culture and your team. Also, let the visitors know how you will add value to their lives. Remember: you need them to take action on every page. As such, always include a subtle call-to-action.
3. Service/Products Page
The service or products page is crucial since this is where you do most of the selling. It’s also likely to be the page with the highest traffic from the search engines and your other marketing channels.
Everything about this page should be optimized to encourage the visitor to go ahead and take action. Here is where you should ensure you optimize the copy for SEO along with persuading and educating the customers and encouraging them to make a purchase.
If you’re selling multiple products like software or services, don’t feel obligated to put all the information for every item on one page. You can create separate pages for each product or service. Besides being better for SEO, it gives you a chance to provide as many details as possible about each product or service you’re offering. This increases your chances of converting more visitors.
4. The Testimonial/ Reviews/ Social Proof Page
How many competitor websites are there in your niche or industry? Lots of them, right?
In most industries, there’s a constant stream of competitors out there trying to convince your target clients that they’re better than you. One of the ways to differentiate your business is by using a testimonials page.
The testimonials page is the only page with copy from your past clients and customers. It provides social proof of how other customers benefitted from doing business with you.
The more social proof you have, the more credibility you have. Credibility increases your likability and increases trust. And once trust is established, this increases the likelihood that you’ll soon have a new customer.
Testimonials can be in the form of:
- Copy by your past clients as they explain how you added value in their lives and/or business
- Videos as clients express their experience working with you or using your products
- Star ratings, especially for e-commerce products
- Links to publications on high-authority platforms that mention your company, product or service
- Interview clips from podcasts or traditional media outlets
- Magazine, newspaper or other news features
- When presenting a written testimonial, include a picture of the client, their contact information (if available), and their business information. It gives the testimonial validity.
- Make sure the testimonials give real insight into how the clients benefitted from working with you or using your products. A mere compliment on how good a person you are isn’t enough. Provide real data or some evidence supporting the testimonial.
5. Contact Page
Most ‘Contact Us’ pages have minimal copy. Fail! If you do the same for your website, you lose out on an opportunity to maximize your conversion.
Don’t just provide the contact form. Give a story, show some testimonials, use the copy to spark their need to contact you. This will minimize the bounce rate.
Not only that, but lots of visitors like to navigate directly to the Contact Page to find out who you are. Therefore, it’s absolutely necessary to ensure that the design, layout, and the copy on the page all encourage the visitor to enter their details and contact you.
A side note here: ask for only the details you need from the prospect. Sometimes, asking for too much personal information discourages visitors from contacting you. However, dont’ be afraid to ask for as much information as you feel you need to respond accurately. In other words, strike a balance but err on the side that’s least invasive.
How To Optimize All Your Pages For Maximum Conversion
To increase your conversion rate, you’ll want to work these tasks into your website makeover strategy:
1. Sprinkle a Few Testimonials on Every Page
Testimonials tell the world what others think of your ‘zone of genius.’ Every visitor should have a chance to know what others think of your services or products. They increase your influence and help you convert more visitors.
2. Have a Call-to-Action on Every Page
If a visitor finds what you’re offering to be valuable and would want to become a subscriber, you need to make sure that they don’t have to spend five more minutes looking for the sign-up form. Instead, you want to make the process as quick as possible.
Some visitors just need a little nudge to take action. Therefore, make sure you give them this nudge on every page to increase your conversion rate.
If you don’t ask your readers to take a specific action, whether to share, like, subscribe, contact you and so on, they might never do so. Therefore, make sure there is a CTA in every page and every blog post.
3. Incorporate Visual Content
Words are great, but images and videos are even better. Using more pictures and videos in your pages helps to capture the attention of the visitors. Visual content keeps them engaged much longer, thereby giving you more time to provide them with the information needed to convert them.
Using videos content also breaks up the monotony of reading through blocks of text. It makes your site exciting and helps you stand out amongst your competitors. Furthermore, video marketing in major online platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and so on seem to be moving toward embracing more videos as video content seem to resonate with the users much better than other forms of content.
4. Optimize Your Keywords
It’s vital to ensure that you give your site a strong chance of ranking well on search engines. It’s imperative to optimize your keywords to give the search engines’ algorithm clues about the purpose of your website and what value you’re providing to the visitors. Optimizing your blog posts is very important since it helps your target audience to find you through the search engines.
1. Blog Posts
Blog posts aren’t necessarily pages but they are some of the most effective marketing tools. Blog posts give you the chance to educate and empower your visitors. They are your chance to wow your followers with your expertise in the field. The more you write about a particular field and the more you provide answers to your target audience, the more they view you as an expert in the field. Blog posts are your primary persuasion tool.
2. Landing Page
A landing page isn’t a typical website page. However, it’s a very critical page to help you maximize the conversion of your website.
Basically, it’s a sign-up page where visitors can leave their contact details such as their email addresses. It helps you to increase your email list and as you might have heard, the money is on the list.
3. Confirmation Page
A confirmation page is a page that comes up after people sign-up for your email newsletter or lead magnet confirming that they are now subscribed to your email list. It lets them know that they can expect your email and they’re also free to unsubscribe.
It’s a general rule of thumb that the more pages your website has, the more visitors you’re likely to get and the more likely you are to convert. As a matter of fact, in 2018, Hubspot released a report showing that websites with 51-100 pages received 48% more visitors than those with less than 50 pages. Therefore, your main aim as a business owner should be to provide as much value as possible using your website and eventually you will start to create more traction and convert more visitors.