SME Social Series #2 Get your website fit for the summer

This summer two massive sporting events take place and you can expect them to dominate your social media feeds. In our last blog post we looked at the growth in social media and urged companies to consider taking part.

But before you dive into the world of social you need to have an online presence that your new audience can circle back to.

Social media is a great place to be ‘social’. If you do it properly it can also be commercial.

 

Get your website fit for purpose

Because you met your new audience online it is important you have a meaningful online presence that allows them to discover more about your company, the products, the people with a view to converting them into becoming a customer.

Social will get you so far. Your website will seal the deal.

In order to give your business the best chance at converting a social lead into a sale there are a number of things your website must have as a minimum.

 

ONE – Attractive, modern design is essential

The rate of change online has been phenomenal. So much so, that people won’t waste their time with outdated websites. If your site looks like something from the 1990’s or 2000’s even, people know there is a more modern alternative out there somewhere.

In a study, psychologist and researcher Dr. Elizabeth Sillence asked participants to find websites on the subject of hypertension and then rate whether they trusted or distrusted the website. The results showed that 94% of wary respondents attributed their distrust to the website’s design.

 

TWO – Responsive design is a minimum

In 2015 Google changed their search algorithm to rank webpages according to the device they were being viewed on. As a result, websites that did not have responsive design disappeared from mobile search engine results pages.

Responsive design means the images and text on your webpages will snap down to fit the size of the screen regardless of the device are being viewed on.

With PC sales at an 8 year low, it safe to say mobile is taking over. An increasing amount of online activity now takes place on a handheld connected device. You can’t afford to miss out on mobile traffic and visitors.

 

THREE – Speed – a quick page load time

They say ‘speed kills’ on the road. Well, lack of speed kills online. Load time is a ranking factor in organic search engine results. Research from KISSmetrics.com shows that load times matter when it comes visitor retention.

The hard part was getting the prospect to click on the link. Don’t blow the opportunity by having a clunky website.

You can test you page load speed HERE

 

(540 by 540 image) SME Social Post #2

 

FOUR – Make a great first impression

Various studies show that it only takes a fraction of a second for visitors to get a first impression of your site. It is extremely hard to change the first impression of a visitor. A negative first impression will stick in their mind and reduce the chance they will return let alone convert.

 

FIVE – Make it easy to navigate

It is important to put some time into how your website is laid out. Imagine how frustrating it would be for a potential customer who visited your website and couldn’t find what they were looking for. Good navigation means visitors to your website get what they need in the least possible clicks.

 

SIX – Present your product/service as a  solutions

When creating content for your website it is important to focus on the benefits of your products and services rather than the features. For example, a feature of the early iPod is the 1GB of memory but the benefit of having this much memory is you’ll have 1,000+ songs available on demand.

 

SEVEN – Have clear call to actions

You’ve caught their attention. They followed up by clicking a link. They’ve looked around your website… Ask them to do something.

According to SmallBizTrends.com 80% of small B2B business websites lacked a call-to-action as recently as 2013. They were losing out on sales, quite possibly, because they simply failed to ask for the sale.

Your customers won’t know what to do if you don’t ask them. At the end of every sales page, blog post, product page have a compelling and relevant call-to-action that’ll encourage visitors to do something that deepens their engagement/relationship with you.

 

Postscript

Do you have a website? If not please get it touch to see how OPEN can build your online presence.

If you do have a website use the above seven points as a checklist? If you scored 7/7, congrats. If you fell down on any of the above, especially numbers 1 and 2, contact us and we can see how we can help to improve it.

 

TAKEAWAYS

  1. Having an old, clunky, ugly website is the same as dispatching a tired sales person in a cheap suit with no answers. Invest in bespoke design for your website to make a fantastic first impression and a lasting relationship.
  2. Mobile is taking over, your website must be responsive to rank in mobile search
  3. Build it and they will come does not apply online. Design, layout, navigation and page load speed are all ranking factors. Content and SEO are the oxygen for your website.
  4. Have a clear call to action. Your readers won’t know what to do if you don’t tell them.

Are you active on social media? Drop us a tweet using #OPENsocial to @Open_feed

In reality there are events and news stories every week that create conversations you can join. You don’t have to wait for the major sporting events. If you want to learn more about how social media can play a role in your marketing mix contact OPEN today.

 

SME - download button Issue Two