Your company’s website is probably your most powerful marketing and sales tool, yet many businesses neglect to create an enjoyable digital experience that drives conversions. Factors such as content, loading speed, design, and structure all play an important role in encouraging prospects and existing customers to continue navigating your site. Failing to account for these important factors will lead to lost opportunities and a negative brand reputation.
We live in a digital age where our customers know that the solutions to their pain points are a quick search away and have become accustomed to receiving fast and reliable service from their chosen vendors. That means that companies have to be willing and ready to deliver relevant content, information, and solutions at a moment’s notice to capture their target customer’s attention and generate conversions.
However, when your website is not optimized to match your users’ needs, providing customers with the type of experience they have come to expect becomes much more difficult. If customers have to wait too long to get what they want and need or can’t find what they’re looking for, they’ll likely look for solutions elsewhere. But failing to optimize your website to match customer preferences doesn’t just affect bounce rates; it also impacts order size, customer satisfaction, SEO rankings, and your ability to gain conversions.
In other words, if you’re not seeing the results you want, it might not necessarily mean that it’s time to overhaul your marketing strategy. The solution to your demand and lead generation goals could be as simple as taking the steps necessary to make your website faster and create a more enjoyable browsing experience for your customers.
Today, we’re going to walk you through 5 things you should focus on to do just that.
1) Measure the Speed of Your Website and Optimize Accordingly
Your site can have the best content, SEO, and design, but all it takes to make your bounce rates skyrocket is a slow page loading time. Your target customers want quick answers to their most pressing questions, and having to wait around — even if it’s only for a second or two — can motivate them to look for a solution elsewhere.
The good news is that even if your page load time is very slow, there are tools that can help you measure performance and determine the best course of action. To start, you should check out Think with Google’s Test My Site tool. This handy tool will help you evaluate your website and give you pointers on what you can do to optimize it for speed. You can even generate a report so your team can review recommendations and collaborate to develop an appropriate plan of action. Google Analytics is another essential tool for reviewing the performance of your website on an ongoing basis. Analytics actually has three different reports related to speed.
To view them:
- Log into your account
- Go to “Your View”
- Click on the“Reporting” tab
- Select “Behavior”
- Click on the section that says “Site Speed”
Of course, you shouldn’t wait for your website speed to decrease before taking action. Following these best practices will help you keep page speed fast and avoid a complete website overhaul in the future:
- Optimize your images: Create images according to the maximum size you’ll need them for. Save them in a web-friendly format and at the minimum size that will still render properly.
- For WordPress sites, keep plugins to a minimum: It’s easy to feel like a kid in a candy store with all the cool plugins available on WordPress. However, you should aim to keep plugins at a minimum and only install those that will be most useful to you. Check your plugins on a regular basis to see if they still work, and disable and delete them if they don’t.
- Minimize redirects: Do you (or your staff) create, redirect, and then delete lots of pages? Consider breaking this habit. Any more than a couple of redirects can significatly slow a site.
- Set up Google PageSpeed on your site: It’s free, Google approved, and highly effective at helping you optimize your pages.
2) Optimize Your Website Content for SEO
You can’t begin to provide your customers with an enjoyable website experience if they don’t make it to your website in the first place. SEO – and your ability to speak the language of search engines and, most importantly, your consumers – is essential to helping you drive qualified leads to your website. Using appropriate keywords that will help your content rank higher in Google Search and are relevant to your industry and customers will help individuals who are interested in what you offer to find you more easily.
One thing to keep in mind with SEO is that not all keywords carry the same weight. Using tools like Moz and Google Keyword Planner can help you determine which keywords are trending with (and matter most) to your audience. Make sure to embed these keywords naturally in content that is housed on relevant pages throughout your website.
If you use WordPress, you can also use the Yoast plugin to ensure that your meta-descriptions, images, URL, and pages are optimized as a whole — improving your chances of showing up higher in the search rankings. More importantly, in doing so, you’ll ensure that you’re speaking the language of your consumer at all times.
Act-On’s SEO Audit Tool lets you optimize pages on your website and special landing pages built within the platform. This way, you can ensure all your pages can easily be found by search engines and your audience alike.
3) Optimize Your Website to Align With the Customer Journey
Nothing is worse than having great content but putting it somewhere on your website where your audience simply can’t find it. This mistake will not only prevent you from engaging your customers and seeing results, but it will also frustrate users as they try to find the resources they need to make an informed purchasing decision.
When laying out your website, consider the multitude of customer journeys that might exist for your target audience and plan accordingly. Consider what matters most to your customers or what they’ll likely be looking for before embarking on their journey, and put those items front and center on your navigation bar. Think about the subsequent actions that your leads are likely to take and arrange your pages accordingly, making sure links to any information they need as they progress through the customer journey are only a click away.
If you’re an Act-On customer, our Website Visitor Tracking tool gives you insight into the behavior of individual visitors. This allows you to better understand how leads are interacting with your website based on a variety of factors — such as industry, role at their organization, and product interest. These insights not only help you relay useful insights to Sales when the time comes to talk, but also give you an opportunity to see if there are certain aspects of your website (such as specific content and CTAs) that are resonating with your customers — and others that are not.
4) Provide Customers With Personalized Recommendations Everywhere They Go
While you can structure your website to account for numerous customer journeys, there are always customers that go off the beaten path. This is especially common when you’re dealing with top-of-funnel leads that simply don’t know what they want or need to begin with. They might be engaging with anything and everything on your website trying to find a solution.
In these situations, your job is to reel them back in and get them to focus. The best way to do that is to take note of any specific trends in their browsing behavior and serving them relevant content that matches these interests.
Act-On’s Adaptive Web solution is an easy-to-install plugin that can help you do both these things with minimal effort. This AI-driven website personalization solution provides your visitors with targeted content recommendations as they navigate your website and you learn more about them. This tactic improves engagement and time on site, allowing you to keep great opportunities from slipping away.
5) Provide Clear and Easy to Complete CTAs
All this work to create an enjoyable website browsing experience is only worth it if you’re able to motivate your visitors to convert. But this is only possible if they’re clear on what you want them to do and can complete that action easily and efficiently.
Follow these best practices to ensure that you capture an email, secure a meeting, or drive a sale.
- Place Your CTAs Where Customers Can See Them: Your leads can’t complete an action if they can’t find your CTA to begin with. Placing your CTAs where they easily catch your customers’ eye is key to driving conversions.
- Ensure Your CTAs Are Clear and Concise: Your CTAs should convey to your customers what you want them to do and what they’ll get if they follow your prompt. Phrases such as “Download Our eBook” or “Talk to an Expert” clearly and briefly communicate the offer your customers can expect to receive once they hand over their information.
- Make It Easy for Contacts to Complete Your Request: Including too many fields in your conversion forms might lead your prospects away from the page. Implementing Adaptive Forms is an easy and effective way to capture the information you need to nurture your customers without overwhelming them. These forms use progressive profiling, which means they take into account the data you’ve already collected, enabling you to limit form fields while capturing new information with every conversion.
If you’d like more tips on how to craft CTAs that convert, check out our recent blog post.
Make Sure You’re Equipped to Engage With Customers Beyond Your Site
Creating an enjoyable customer experience on your website is just the first step toward gaining conversions and nurturing qualified leads into loyal customers. If you want to keep the momentum going once your audience leaves your site, you have to use the contact information you’ve captured to continue to engage and educate your customers as they move down the sales funnel.
Act-On enables you to do just that by providing the tools and resources you need to capture important customer insights and deliver a tailored customer experience. We empower you to nurture customers via automated nurture campaigns, social media, and customized landing pages. Our platform even equips your sales team with valuable information to help them seal the deal when the time comes to talk business.
Interested in how we do it? Schedule a time to talk with one of our experts to learn more. Or, if you’d like to learn why Gartner named Act-On a Visionary in the 2019 Magic Quadrant for CRM Lead Management, download the full report below!