Business websites can often sit online gathering the digital equivalent of dust. Many owners consider it a ‘necessary expense’, aka ‘everyone else has a site so I need one too’. That site rarely gets updated or integrated fully into marketing strategies short of an inbound link or two on social media. This approach is not only short-sighted, it ignores the full potential that websites are able to deliver.
With more thought and a better design, your site could be the one, sure-fire investment that drives continuing growth and income to your business.
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In short, make the right decisions and that necessary expense will quickly be transformed into a highly effective, money-making asset.
Here are four ways to transform your website from an expense into a money-making asset:
1. Reinforce you brand
Brand is more than just a logo and a few, carefully chosen images. It represents the heart of your business, the essence that customers trust and engage with. There’s no better media to help build and strengthen that brand reputation than your website.
This space is ideal for showing your expertise, proving your worth and setting you apart from the competition. It’s perfect for providing your customers with a great experience and it’s indispensable in growing your fan base.
Recent research showed that 64% of consumers thought that shared values were important in developing a trusting relationship with a brand. While many business do this kind of connecting on social media, it needs to be present into your most important asset – your website.
If that site is simply sitting there and not actively changing or helping to engage, it’s not fulfilling its potential. It may just be time to take a fresh look at your website and discover new and exciting ways to get your brand message across.
2. Focus on a great content strategy
One way to grow your brand effectively and organically is by focusing on quality content. That means offering something of value to your visitors. You need to stop looking at your site as an SEO factory to do this. While optimisation is important and probably always will be, the user experience while they are on your site is equally vital.
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In other words, it’s not just great to get people onto your site, you have to keep them there and entertained once they arrive. Poor or ill thought out content is not going to cut it. It’s a bit like sending out invites to a party and then having no drinks or music when people arrive. What you require is a content strategy that energises your base.
Great content means different things to different businesses. If you are a fashion store, your content strategy might involve regular blogs about new designs and trends. If you’re a solicitors, your content could include written and video content that helps people understand their legal standing.
Some businesses throw any kind of content they can onto their website. After all, there’s no real restrictions on how much you can put up there. A great strategy makes you more aware of wasting space and resources on content that isn’t worth its place on the digital page in the first place.
Get it right and you can expect trust to build for your brand and people to visit your site because you deliver interesting and useful content. It’s not just about what you have on your blog or landing pages, either.
Your entire content needs to be written with the express purpose of delivering value to your customers.
3. Outshine your competitors
Your competitors should be a source of inspiration. If you haven’t already done so, it’s time to undertake a competitor analysis. Look at what they do better than you and use that to make changes on your own website. Also look at what they don’t do quite so well and use this as a focus to do better.
If you outperform your competitors online, you should expect at least a few customers to migrate over to your business because you market your services better. Competitor analysis should not be a one-off undertaking, either. You should do it regularly if you want to stay on top of the latest trends and changes. The good news is there are plenty of tools out there nowadays to keep a check on what’s happening.
4. Redesign your marketing funnel
The marketing funnel is important if you want to efficiently convert your website visitors into customers. Give them too many hurdles to jump over and they can become bored or frustrated and start looking elsewhere. Take a step back and look at how many steps a visitor has to take before they buy your product or service. You may be surprised at what you find.
The user journey has become all important in recent years. That’s mostly down to improved technology which allows businesses, even smaller ones, to access targeting tools and methods to improve the customer experience. The marketing funnel still remains a key component of this kind of digital strategy, even if it has changed a little in nature during that time.
- How do you capture visitors when they are ready to buy?
- What do visitors do as soon as they get onto your site?
- Are they heading towards a sale or away from it?
- How does your site connect with social media?
- Are your blog pages instantly sharable so more people are likely to visit your site?
There are a hundred and one questions to answer and getting your marketing funnel perfect is not an easy process, especially if you have a large site. You may have different marketing campaigns on the go and they may well have several different points of entry. Keeping track of these requires having suitable metrics in place so that you can measure performance and success.
What you should be doing next
These dynamic changes should help transform your existing website and make it more profitable. The change is about giving visitors what they want, ensuring their experience is a positive and entertaining one while making it easy for them to buy or hire.
While you may think of your site as merely a necessary expense at the moment, the truth is continuing to do so could be costing you more than a few extra sales. It might just be time to take a fresh look at those web pages.