Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Seven website mistakes that will kill your business

Despite so many people looking for products on the internet, too many firms seem happy for their website to deter, rather than inspire, potential customers.

1. Your website tells what you do, not what you can do for the customer

“We provide bespoke financial advice” is the opening line of one Dorset business website. It might be true, but it’s not the right message. What it should say is something like: “Get a better return on your savings”, or “Don’t be short-changed on your pension”.

Telling the customer what you do is better than nothing, but telling them how you can improve their lives is a much more powerful message.

2. Your website looks rubbish on a mobile

Have you dared look at your website on a smartphone or tablet computer? Others probably have, because it’s fast becoming one of the most popular ways to search online. It doesn’t need saying that a site that won't be popular if looks poor on a mobile device, or is hard to navigate.

3. Your content is out of date

The web is littered with social media accounts and blogs set up by small firms in a fit of inspiration, only to die after a few months. But the bodies are still out there: accounts and blogs where the last entry is dated sometime in 2011, or earlier.

Out of date content doesn’t send out a good message.

4. Your ‘Contact us’ navigation is useless

You might think that saying ‘Contact us by clicking the link at the top of the page’ makes it really easy for the reader to act. No, it doesn’t. Every time you use the words ‘contact us’, make those word a link or display a phone number.

Put a gap in between ‘Contact us’ and the customer actually doing just that, and you risk losing them.

5. Your website is still under construction

Worst case (and it still happens) is your site isn’t there at all. Still bad are the sites that contain the minimum content, but contain links to pages that are clearly waiting to be filled.

You may be planning to add more content, but good intentions don’t get results. Action is required.

6. Your content contains typing errors

Typing errors - that’s the polite way of describing spelling mistakes or grammar howlers. Will a misplaced apostrophe lose you a sale? Yes, it could. You might not notice mistakes, but some people do and for them it’s a real turn-off.

7. Your ‘About Us’ page kills business

Whether you’re a sole trader, a partnership or a limited company, your website should display a business address. Some visitors to your site look for this, because it helps build their confidence in your business.

The same goes for your ‘About Us’ page. People come to this because they want some clue as to who you really are; they’re not looking for yet another sales message. Being a little more open about who's behind the business can win you more sales.

Six reasons why your ‘About Us’ page is losing you business

For more business tips, click here.

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