Your website is your business’s digital storefront and in a saturated market, first impressions count for everything. According to statistics 94% of first impressions are dictated by the design of your website and you have just 10 seconds on average to impress and engage those visiting your website. So without further ado lets look at the 8 questions your customers want answered when they visit your website…
What Are You Selling or What Services Do you Provide?
If it’s not clear what products you sell or the services you offer from the get-go then you’ve immediately lost your ideal customer. They’ve clicked back on their browser and they’re punching in their card details on your competitor’s website as we speak. Sure, it sounds like a no-brainer to clearly outline your offering but I’m sure you’ve come across the kind of websites that offer more style than substance. You know the ones that use lots of unnecessarily lengthy and cryptic jargon to describe their services without actually telling you what they do or offer.
Get to the point and get to it fast. Time isn’t on your side.
The very first thing your prospective customer or client sees on your website should define what you offer – this can take many forms. A heading, a few lines of copy, a hero image, a video – whatever clearly communicates that they’ve come to the right place to get what they seek.
Why Should They Care?
You’ve established your offering. You have something the user wants whether that’s a product or service. But now you need to convince them why they should buy from you specifically. In the case of a homepage or landing page this needs to be short and sweet, remember you can always go into more detail on your product or service pages.
How to convince them to buy from you:
- Outline what makes your products different from your competitors – e.g. are they personalised, made using zero waste processes or do they solve a problem for a niche audience?
- Highlight your credentials – have you won awards, been or been in your industry for a long time or do you have any certifications that prove your expertise?
- Define your values and benefits – customers want to know that you business aligns with their needs, values and that there is a benefit to shopping with you. Do you for instance over fast-track delivery or donate a percentage of your profit to charity?
What’s The Cost?
Now your potential customers know what you offer and why you’re the one to buy from, seal the deal by letting them know how much your products or services cost. Whether you choose to display your products or rates on your homepage is up to you – there are several arguments for and against and it’s something you’ll have to weigh up in the context of your own business. Needless to say don’t make potential customers or clients hunt for this pricing, make sure it’s just a click away, whether that’s on a product page or an enquiry page.
What Sets You Apart From Your Competitors?
Your website needs to demonstrate that you align with your ideal customer’s values and that the service or products you offer is different from that of your competitors in some way. Brand identity is all about how you position yourself and must be consistent, think about what that means for your business and how you communicate your story, values and personnel. People buy from people, so communicate with them accordingly.
Again this does not mean you have to write reams and reams of text about your brand or service detailing your history from conception to now – as the line in After Life goes “Nobody wants to hear your podcast” – you can always include more on your about and team member pages!
Is Your Website Easy to Navigate?
Everything your customer might want to access on your website should be available to them in as few clicks as possible. Design your website to be intuitive and easily navigated. User experience is vital to today’s online marketplace. Websites designed with best user experience practices could boost conversion rates by up to 400%. Want to know if your website is easy to navigate? Don’t just ask your friends to tell you what they think – ask someone you would define as your ideal customer to test it out or better still, ask your customers to give you feedback and then build it into your design.
Do you Have Reviews or Testimonials?
If you’re asking people to part with their hard-earned cash then they need to know it’s worth it – does anyone buy anything these days without reading the reviews? Let people know what your customers to date think of your products or showcase client testimonials on your website. As I said earlier, people buy from people! If you have a great overall client satisfaction score, showcase that too – especially if it’s via an independent platform such as TrustPilot.
Can Customers Trust You?
Establishing trust with potential customers from the get-go is important and there are multiple ways to do so. Things to consider implementing and displaying on your website to establish trust with your customers include:
- Having a security certificate – make sure your website is SSL protected. Especially if customers can buy directly from your website.
- Do you have all the necessary policies in place in relation to your services and products? Make sure people are aware of all terms and conditions in regard to your website, how you collect data and any policies you have around the services or products you offer.
- Are your products or services backed by recognised industry regulators for example if you offer organic products are you certified by the Soil Association?
- Are your reviews real? Using an independent platform can inspire greater consumer confidence as people are more likely to believe them.
- Has your website been proofread? It sounds simple but something as seemingly small as a typo can put people right off purchasing from a website either because they fear it to be a scam or you’ve lost credibility. Would you hire a copywriter if their website had spelling and grammatical errors?
Are You Easily Contactable?
Nothing makes a business look more suss than not having contact details on their website. Depending on where you are in the world, what you offer and what type of business you are there will be certain rules about what details you will need to clearly display on your website – do your research and make sure you’re complying with these.
Build your contact details into your design, whether that’s making sure your phone number and/or email address is included in the template of every page or just having a clear link to your contact page. Having a clear touchpoint for customers will make your business look more credible and improve conversion opportunities.
Over to you…
Does your website answer these 8 questions? If not, I hope some of my tips will be useful in helping you do so! Looking to outsource your website design, optimisation and management? I’d love to have a chat about how I could potentially help!