Hi, Are you thinking of setting up a website or updating your current one? Are you looking for a few ideas to help you get started? If so, stay tuned because I can help you.
My Name is Tony Messer & I am one of the founders of Pickaweb.
We´re frequently asked by our customers what is the secret of a great website .
So let´s get straight to the point. What should your new website do? Maybe the best place to start is to look at what it shouldn´t do.
The first thing that to avoid is to make your website a glorified online business card. You know the type of thing I mean, bland statements of welcome to our website, we do x,y or z services.
It´s a bit old hat really & things have moved on & if you want to stand out from the crowd then you really have to avoid falling into the trap of mediocrity.
The real problem with this type of approach is that these website owners are suffering from what I call lazy website syndrome.
Think about it for a moment. Most people have a website that just sits there in some dark corner of the internet, lonely & unloved. It doesn´t attract visitors & when it does they have a quick look & then they are gone, never to return.
Usually it will have a minimum amount of content & what it does have looks tired & stale & talks vaguely about things like commitment to service etc, etc.. Unfortunately if your website doesn´t cut it, that is how people will judge you & they just won´t give you a chance to show what you can deliver.
A lazy website doesn´t encourage visitors to initiate contact. In fact, it does its best to put people off.
To help you visualize the potential damage that this type of lazy website does to a business, imagine a website as being like a member of staff. If you had a member of staff that didn´t pick the phone up, or who gave short, cursory answers to your customers you would do something about it.
At the least you would sit down & explain to them what you wanted, maybe put them on a training course. But you would take action, I´m sure of that.
So, what is the alternative, what should a great website look like? What does it do?
I think that probably the best way to think of your website is that it should be your marketing hub rather than just an online brochure. It should be like a central place for people to learn more about you & to engage with you in a more meaningful way.
Now if you´re like me & you like things nice & simple then we can boil it down into 3 words. Basically your website needs to prospect, convert & grow. What I mean by this is that it needs to attract people to you in the first place. It then needs to convert them so that they become customers & finally to get them to stay with you for a long time.
Now it sounds a little bit complicated but once you start to break it down it is pretty straightforward. I know that there is a tendency to over complicate the internet & it is true that things do move pretty quickly but the good news is that none of this is beyond anyone.
So what I´d like to do is to invite you to imagine that you had a website that was working for you. I mean really working hard for you. As opposed to a lazy one that was just sitting there all lonely & unloved.
To be honest, it isn´t even a question of having an amazing looking website although that does help, but rather a website that engages your visitors & educates them.
Let´s take a moment or two to think what this type of website would be like.
Well first & foremost it would be able to attract visitors & be able to report this to you clearly so that you can see how much traffic you are getting & from where.
Once you are attracting visitors your website should catch their attention so that they stop & take a good look around rather than letting them leave.
It needs to appear trustworthy too. People are far more likely to stay & find out more about you if they feel that they can trust you.
Now that you have traffic & you have created trust you need to start to engage with your visitors. Offer them something that makes them want to initiate contact with you & make it as easy as possible for them to do so.
When people do make contact with you it is vital that you keep their details in a central place where anyone in your company can respond to them. As you will discover soon, customer contact & follow up is the key to your online success.
As an expert in your field you need space to demonstrate your skills & knowledge aside from your main website. By demonstrating your expertise you are basically inviting people to educate themselves about your products or services.
Once you are comfortable doing this then you will find it natural to create high quality content which people will want to access & for which they will offer you their contact details in return.
At this point you are then ready to engage at a much more fulfilling level with your visitors. It is at this point that you will notice that you are able to passively harvest sales rather than aggressively hunting them down.
Once you are doing all of these good things then things like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn & all the other social media stuff that you hear about will suddenly really start to make sense rather than being a frivolous distraction for your staff.
And as an added bonus, your website would benefit from a much better return on online advertising especially from Pay per Click.
If you had all of these things then you would have a website that worked on auto pilot 24 hours a day to help you grow your business rather than a website that sat there lonely & unloved.
Don´t believe you can do it? Well, let me put your mind at rest. You can. Anyone can. And what´s more, I´m going to show you how in the next video which I will send to you shortly.
In the meantime if you have a moment I´d like to leave you with a little task that will help you get started & which will get you moving in the right direction without you even realizing it.
OK, now we know from various studies that when most people visit a new website they will give it between 5 to 7 seconds before they decide whether to stay or go. So in a nutshell you just have a few seconds to catch people´s attention so you need to act quickly.
The best way to do this is through the use of a headline which is prominently displayed & which leaves the visitor in no doubt about who you are & what you can do for them.
So I´d like you to think about a headline for your website. Try to keep it short, to the point & make sure it brings out the benefits of what you offer.
A good way to achieve this is to create a list of features & then convert them from cold features into warm benefits. Once you have these, try to draw out the most important point & summarise it in your new headline.
Try to think of it like this. Would you prefer a dentist who promotes the fact that he has the sharpest drill in town or the one who promises the “Hollywood Smile”?
Well that´s all for now. Next time I´ll show you how you can create a powerful internet strategy step by step & in a language that you will understand.
Let me know how you get on & please leave your comments below as I do read them & I will get back to you!
Thanks for watching & I´ll see you soon.