To avoid missing out on substantial new business through your website, make sure it's:
1. Easily found & accessible
If your target market doesn’t know about your site’s existence, or simply can't find it, what’s the point in investing in it in the first place? It’s vital you have a programme of web promotion and search engine marketing. Take measures also to ensure that your website is cross-browser compatible and that it meets statutory requirements for accessibility.
2. User-friendly & visually appealing
People’s attention spans are short. Even if your website is easy to find, if it’s even slightly frustrating to use, your users will abandon your site and take their business elsewhere. You can however prevent most abandonment through usability testing and making the resulting improvements to your site. In order to pull in new business, it’s also important to evaluate your web users’ ‘browsing statistics’ on an on-going basis to make sure that you’re delivering exactly what your users expect.
3. Useful, engaging & up-to-date
Content must meet your visitors’ expectations by being genuinely captivating and useful. What seems interesting to you is not necessarily what your customers want to hear. Invest in professional search engine optimised copy and plan your site’s content with direct input from your target market. Monitoring your website statistics will enable you to gauge which pages are pulling in traffic, and a programme of ongoing web maintenance will ensure that (i) your content is fresh enough to encourage visitors back again and again, and (ii) a good search engine ranking is maintained.
David Crowther is the director of NerveCentral, whose mission is simple: to maximise its clients business and profit through the web . We have provided web solutions for many organisations and small companies, including well-known corporates such as Thomson Travel Group, Q8, Edding, GlaxoSmithKline, Galderma, and Hertz. Download our concise but (very) useful guide 5 (Often Missed) Usability Tips for your Website to Increase Profit now!