1. View your website as a true business location
The old view of a website was as a digital brochure or business card. Although you knew you had one, your website was forgotten about in your business ecosystem. This approach no longer works, and it means you’re spending money on keeping up a website that no one wants to interact with (or even can interact with).
The shift that the digital age has brought in audiences across industry and sector is that people now expect to be able to research, connect or communicate, and purchase online in a swift and easy journey. If your business doesn’t allow for this, then users are likely heading over to your competitors. Even if you have the best product or service, users will choose lesser businesses over you if their online customer experience ranks higher.
You need to view your website just as you would have viewed a physical store or meeting a customer face-to-face. Your website now deserves the same, or more, energy that you had previously put into these traditional channels. This means updating your static brochure-style website into an online platform that hosts all the information about your business and your industry, but also allows users to talk to your marketing or sales team and convert directly on the website (i.e. leave their contact details or purchase products). Better yet, it should allow for you to track user engagements to better serve relevant content that will continue to convert better and better. Treat your website just as you might your best traditional sales channel, and just as you would invest in testing and optimising there, you need to commit the same investment to your website. This will help you to wrap your mind around the costs (and benefits) involved with needed optimisations, such as search engine optimisation (SEO), content creation, user experience design, and employing marketing automation software.
2. Use call-to-actions (CTAs)
A call-to-action is the element on your website that encourages users to leave their contacts details or purchase your product. It might be a button, a clickable banner image, a hyperlink or a form. But the importance of a CTA means that it should always be easily noticeable, and if it is not a form itself, it should lead to a form or product purchase page. In this way, you highlight and outline the clear journey that a user needs to take to convert, taking the thought process out of the equation for them.
In order to use CTAs, though, you need to understand your value proposition. What are you offering? And why is it worth a user leaving their details for it, or even purchasing your product online? This is where CTA language becomes important, which is conversion-focused language that prompts users into converting by highlighting benefits, positive reviews or statistics, and using inclusive action verbs (such as, Download now or Join our event or Get in touch).
Customer experience and user flow are vitally important when considering lead generation, which is why it’s so important to have a clear journey that your users should take and bold CTAs that attract conversion. To properly action an optimised user flow on your website, you’ll need to consider your audience’s buying cycle and how they need to be nurtured (or walked) through this. If the majority of users are finding you knowing what they want and only need a clear conversion process, then you don’t need to spend too much time focusing on educational content. But, and this is probably the majority of businesses, you attract users that are still researching their options and pain points, then your user flow will need to include educational content that slowly becomes more promotional… to the point of ultimately leading them to conversion.