As one of the most important public faces of your company, your website can speak volumes about your business. A poorly-designed, out of date, or malfunctioning website can drive customers away. But a site with positive user experiences and personalized content can transform skeptics into customers, making sales on your behalf.
Today, we will explore some of the pitfalls of an unsuccessful website. We will also discuss a few things you can do to strengthen your own website and help your brand shine.
Sending the Wrong Message
Your website might be representing your business in a way that may not align with what your brand stands for. It’s important to be aware of exactly what your website is saying, and how customers are perceiving these messages.
A platform that is hard to use can wrongfully tell customers that you're disorganized. If you suspect that users are having navigation problems, have multiple people read over your content and look over the website layout. How can you present information in the clearest and most effective way possible in order to give customers what they need? Making some adjustments can bring people back, and even help improve search engine optimization.
Information that is no longer relevant or that is not regularly updated is a big red flag to customers. It may tell them that your business is not relevant. Worst yet, with a website that hasn’t been updated recently, they may wonder if you're still in business. Making sure you are providing customers with the most up-to-date information and fresh designs, while also regularly checking that links are working, will show that you are in-touch with their needs.
As the person that is in charge of your business, you understand all of its parts. But what would someone who is totally new to your company be able to get out of your website? If they are having trouble finding out what it is you do, they are likely to take their business elsewhere. Make sure you have a clear description of your services that's appropriate to your audience (general public, industry insiders, etc.). This way, potential clients doing their research know where you fit in with their potential options.
Creating a Successful Site
While there are numerous ways to make a negative impression with your website or digital platform, there are many things you can do to give customers the best experience possible. That way they get the right sense of your brand and business the first time. Often times, with the internet, you won't get a second chance.
Assumptions can make or break a business. Whether it's realized by the end user audience or not, one huge indicator of a site’s trustworthiness is whether it is properly designed, and if the design fits in with the company’s branding. It's a proven fact that people want to interact with something that is nice to look at. According to Adobe, 38% of people will stop engaging with online content if it is not visually pleasing. Simple is almost always better than being over the top or too complicated when it comes to aesthetics. Keeping a website's visual look fresh and updated will make people want to come back. If you're not comfortable making these changes yourself, partner with a local agency that has a designer on staff to assist.
While aesthetics are extremely important, the tone that you use in your content can also influence a potential customer’s perception of the company. Users should feel actively engaged and interested in learning more, while also feeling welcome. It’s important to strike a balance. While you want to be memorable and direct in your content, you also don’t want to come off too strong. Again, it's a smart idea to have a trusted party look over content before it's posted to ensure it’s sending the right message.
Keeping a website online and safely operating is a lot of work. A site that is visibly out-of-date or shows broken elements can be a big negative influence on customers. While it is potentially unsafe if security patches are not handled, it also makes the site appear to be less trustworthy at best and functionally not able to handle a client's visit at worst. Make sure to demonstrate the same level of care that you do with your physical store as you do your online one.
Your website may be the first interaction your customers have with your business. Be sure to give them the right first impression with polished content, impressive designs, and a website that is up-to-date and working. If you are ever stuck about how to stand out, a good tactic is to ask your loyal customers what they think. Vervology also offers services to help your website in any way possible.