[This article was written by Matt Casadona.]
In today’s day and age, there may be no greater asset to your company than your website. Your website is like your store’s digital storefront. You wouldn’t build a shabby-looking brick and mortar store, so why would you create a less-than-optimal website?
Reality is that your website can truly make or break your business. A well-designed and expertly built website can drive a steady flow of high-quality leads straight into your hands, whereas a poorly designed and built website can lead to stagnant business and little success.
If you’ve started a new business and are interested in designing a website that doesn’t only look great, but also attracts high-quality leads, we’re here to help. Read on to learn our favorite tips to build a business site that converts leads into customers.
Design for Minimalism
A common mistake that inexperienced business owners make when building a new website is simply doing way, way too much. They try to get absolutely every aspect of their business front and center on their website, and end up with a jumbled and confusing mess.
As a new business owner, it can be hard to edit. For one, everything about your business feels exciting and important to you. It’s a challenge to choose which aspects of your business should be featured and which can be nestled away in the footer. Additionally, you just have so much to say. You want to tell everyone who visits everything about this new business you’ve started.
When it comes to site design, however, minimalism is always better. When visitors come to your site, it should be clear exactly what path they should take. Think critically about what you’d like a visitor’s journey to be when visiting your site and build a clear site design to allow them to do so.
Take a look at 1DENTAL below. 1DENTAL’s website features a simple and straightforward design. It features a clear path for visitors in each stage of the buyer’s journey.
Describe Your Company
Next, it’s time to draft your headline and description. Remember: the key is to keep it brief. Visitors don’t need to know absolutely everything that you do. They just need to know what your company is and how it can help them.
Start with a 3-4 sentence headline that sums up your products or services. Then, follow it with 2-3 sentences that elaborate. What problem does your business solve and how does it do so?
You may not have heard of a call-to-action, or CTA, but you’ve surely interacted with one. They’re those buttons on websites that read “Learn More” or “Download”. CTAs are designed to attract attention and take visitors directly to your most important pages.
Here’s a good way to ensure you’ve got your most important pages linked in your CTAs: think about what path you’d like someone to take at each step in the buyer’s journey. For those in the awareness phase, you may want them to visit an introductory service overview page. For those in consideration, you may want to link to a more in depth “How it Works” or your lead magnet (more on that later). Finally, for those in the decision stage, link to your pricing or FAQs.
Provide a Direct Line of Contact
If you want to turn visitors into leads, you’ve got to make it easy for them to contact you. Depending on your industry, services, or product offerings, you may have customers who tend to have a lot of questions or just want to talk to you about their options.
There are a few different ways to provide a direct line of contact for your visitors. Email is always a great option, but be sure to reply within 48-hours max. A phone number is an easy and accessible way for all sorts of people to contact you instantly. If you want to utilize either of these, be sure to display them visibly on your site.
A 3rd party chat add-on is one of our favorite options. It provides instantaneous contact without the need to talk on the phone. This can be useful for people in office settings, busy environments, or those who simply don’t like to talk on the phone.
Provide Social Proof
In today’s world, reviews are king. No matter how expert you are, professional you seem, or responsible you appear, prospective customers will more often than not search for your reviews. Customers want to learn from their peers what it’s like to work with you. They want to verify that you’re hardworking, trustworthy, and successful.
Chances are, you have a lot of happy customers who have interacted with you on social media, reviewed you on sites like Google and Yelp, and so much more. Why not let those customers do the sales for you? Provide direct links to your social profiles and review sites on every page of your website. This is a great thing to add in the header or footer. Not only does this connect leads with social proof, but it also shows you’ve got nothing to hide.
Take Truliant Federal Credit Union, for example. On their site, they provide links to social profiles, as well as their YouTube library, directly in the footer of their website. This allows visitors quick and easy access to social proof.
Create a Lead Magnet
Now, for the piece de resistance: the lead magnet. A lead magnet is a piece of downloadable content that is provided to visitors in exchange for their contact information. It may be an ebook, a detailed “How To” guide, or any other valuable content that is highly relevant to your industry.
A lead magnet does a few very important things for your business. For one, it pre-qualifies a lead as someone who is in-market for your goods and services. If you’ve designed a lead magnet correctly, the next logical step for those who download is to become a customer. A lead magnet also establishes you and your business as experts in your industry. Even if a lead doesn’t convert tomorrow, next time they’re facing a relevant problem, you’ll be the first to come to mind.
A website is everything to a new business. Make sure you’re website is not only attractive, but effective, by following these steps. From keeping minimalism in mind when designing your website to incorporating CTAs and a direct line of contact, you’ll have a steady stream of customers before you know it!
Matt Casadona has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, with a concentration in Marketing and a minor in Psychology. He is currently a contributing editor for 365 Business Tips. Matt is passionate about marketing and business strategy and enjoys the San Diego life, traveling and music.