When most people think of web design and development, they think of a website that looks great and works well. However, there is more to a great
website that can actually help you turn visitors into paying customers than a pretty design and cool features.
In fact, there are a number of very simple features that you can add to your website right now to ensure it helps your bottom-line rather than hurting it. Here are five improvements to get you started:
1. Supercharge Search
If your site doesn’t include an internal search tool so visitors can find exactly what they’re looking for, then you need to add one right now. Research shows that conversions improve on sites that make three specific changes:
1. Include a colorful, easy to see search bar on every page
2. Upgrade the search function on their sites to offer semantic search rather than just plain text search
3. Use intelligent autocomplete
Your goal should be to make it as easy as possible for visitors to find not just what they’re looking for but also, to find relevant content that might interest them. To that end, consider including related content links in your site’s search results.
2. Offer Formatted Page Printing
We might live in a digital world but people still love to print. Don’t assume your audience will view your website on their computers and mobile devices only. Many people like to print information so they can review it offline.
Have you ever tried to print an article or product description from a website but the information on the page doesn’t print correctly? Has the page ever printed out completely blank? The last thing you want to do is frustrate visitors by making it difficult to print the information you provide on your website! Instead, make sure every page on your site prints legibly.
3. Upgrade Your Product Catalog
Is your site’s product catalog easy to navigate? Can visitors search your online catalog, filter the results, and view related results? Can they save items they like so they can buy those items later? Can they quickly and easily make a purchase?
If you answered “no” to one or more of the questions above, then you need to upgrade your online product catalog. You might even have to upgrade your shopping cart system to ensure visitors stick around long enough to make a purchase.
4. Make It Easy for People to Share Your Content
If visitors to your site can’t share your useful content or links to products they love or services they recommend, then you’re missing a big opportunity to expand your brand’s online reach and boost word of mouth marketing.
At the very least, your website should offer buttons so people can share your content through Twitter and Facebook. For consumer product companies, a Pinterest sharing button is equally as important. Other social media sharing buttons you might consider adding are Google+ and LinkedIn. The key is to make it easy for people to share your content on the social media sites where your target audience spends time.
5. Invest in Professional Copywriting
Without the right messaging on your site, you’ll lose customers. Invest in an experienced copywriter who can understand your target market and your goals. A copywriter who knows what he or she is doing will craft messages that increase the amount of time visitors spend on your site and increase sales.
Keep in mind, you need to write every page equally well because you never know which page someone will arrive to first when they visit your site. First impressions are critical to your digital marketing results