Welcome back to 30 Days Of Medium.
Thanks to everyone who has been reading, clapping and commenting so far! Today’s topic is —Is your website sabotaging your sales?
You can catch up on the first 19 days of my 30 Days Of Medium challenge below if you missed them:
Is my headline sabotaging my article?
I was going to call this article — How important is your website?
But then I wouldn’t have been following my own advice, which is to write compelling headlines to drive views of your content.
That headline wouldn’t sell my content.
So I’ve gone with— Is your website sabotaging your sales?
See a small change, makes a big difference. Everyone cares about their sales. Not everyone cares about their website.
When I connect the two, the number of interested parties rises.
And there we also have the basis for what sales is actually about.
Making your readers or prospects care about what you have to say by demonstrating that what you do can impact their bottom line in some way.
How is my website connected to my sales?
How often do you buy things from unreputable sources?
If a shop looked untrustworthy, would you shop there?
If you went to a new mall for the first time, which shops would you visit?
The brands you know of course. And what what would determine which new, independent stores (if any) you’d visit and spend your money in?
- What they look like
- The shopping experience
- Do they have anything you want
- The price
- Do they appear trustworthy
I’m going to show you how this retail decision making process mirrors itself when it comes to the internet and websites.
What your website looks like
If you won’t visit a shop that looks unreputable, would you visit a website that looked unreputable?
No. Not unless you fancied a large dose of computer virus.
How your website looks isn’t the ‘be all’ and ‘end all’, especially for small businesses. But.
Your website does need to look reputable and at least maintain a certain level of professionalism.
How does this impact your sales?
- Don’t look reputable
- Are too slow to load
- Aren’t mobile friendly
- Don’t have a user friendly layout
- Don’t simply explain what they do
Generally have high bounce rates.
Google defines bounce rate as:
“A bounce is a single-page session on your site. In Analytics, a bounce is calculated specifically as a session that triggers only a single request to the Analytics server, such as when a user opens a single page on your site and then exits without triggering any other requests to the Analytics server during that session.”
In other words.
Bounce rate determines how many visitors land then don’t visit more than 1 page on your website. I.e, they land and leave without exploring further.
You can check your Bounce Rate using Google Analytics.
The website experience
Your website experience, or UX (user experience), is how easy your website is to use.
Does it make sense? Is it easy to find stuff? Is everything clearly signposted? Or are users sitting there mashing their keypads or frustrated by their inability to find or do what they want on your site.
If your website provides a bad experience for users, you will experience high drop offs and possibly also a high bounce rate.
If your website becomes difficult to navigate past the home page, you might find high drop offs on your service pages for example. Or if your quote form sucks, this might have a high drop off rate (or very low conversion rate).
Don’t be like the world’s worst website.
Do you have what your customers want?
It might sound like common sense, but, do you have what your customers want?
Common problems here:
- Being too abstract about what you do
- Not actually listing what you do
- Too much jargon
- Bad copy
These issues can result in your customers not understanding what you do, or if you do what they need you to do.
Abstract, ambiguous language doesn’t = high end or you get to charge more.
You can appear high end and still be extremely simple and deliberate in your language.
Look at the Ferrari website for example. There’s no bloated, technically confusing language or talk of driving a Ferrari being like an outer body experience or some nonsense.
Ferrari’s start at around $180,000 and are still managing to keep it simple.
Interestingly, to compare a brand who lost market share last year, I found the Renault website a bit more confusing to use and it took me some time to figure out what was going. I also didn’t really like the sound of their new Kadjar (that’s just my opinion).
So, keep it simple stupid!
Is it too slow to load?
Page speed isn’t everything, but it is a factor in how your website performs, and ultimately how much business you pick up online.
Your website doesn’t have to be blazing fast, but it does have to not be irritatingly slow.
When websites are irritatingly slow, people go elsewhere.
You can use this free tool from Pingdom to assess how quick or slow your website is.
Slow page speed = high bounce rate
Do you trust this website?
Sales is largely about trust.
Do you trust this person/organisation enough to part with some of your hard earned cash?
The bigger the purchase, the more trust required.
We can go to a corner grocery shop and purchase a chocolate bar or newspaper without a second thought.
We can’t do the same for a new car, or expensive luxury item.
If a website looks o.k, is easy to navigate and provides what you are looking for, how do we cross over the trust bridge to the next step and elicit a purchase from the visitor (or generate a lead for B2B).
Here are some things you can look at to determine if your website is ‘trustworthy’ enough to be effective:
- Does it have an SSL certificate?
- Is there social proof (testimonials, reviews)
- Can I find contact details or enough info about the company to reassure me that it’s a legitimate organisation?
- Are there links to social media profiles?
People want to know they’re dealing with other humans.
Make your website human. Include social media links. Build an About page. Share your contact info. Build out testimonials and case studies.
You could have a beautifully well designed, easy to use website, but if people don’t trust it, it won’t work!
It’s not enough to just throw up a nice template and wait for the leads to roll in, they won’t!
I’ve written before about how the Shopify website absolutely nails social proof and trust.
Woocommerce is a better option for a decent online store, yet Shopify has a huge market share with the small online shop market because their marketing is super good and they lead with their case studies.
Business owners trust Shopify.
How does all this translate into sabotaging my sales?
There’s a really simple litmus test you can use.
Do you get leads or sales from your website?
If you don’t, your website could be sabotaging your sales.
If you are consistent in your online marketing but get no leads, it definitely means there’s an issue somewhere in your online sales funnel and it is most likely your website.
If the traffic is there, either the traffic is not right, or the website isn’t right.
Use our Website Grader
If you’re not sure about your website, feel free to use our free Website Grader tool here to get a free custom report on your website.