Is your website potentially blocking your coins? Learn in this post, if your website could potentially be turning potential clients AWAY! If you have no problem getting people to visit your website but have a hard time converting them to paying customers, this post is for you. It will be most helpful to those of you who sell something on your website. This post will also benefit the creative entrepreneurs selling a service. So now that we’re all caught up, let’s dive in!
Your Website Is Not For You
First things first, the reality of owning a website is acknowledging the cold hard truth of it not being for you. That’s right. Your website isn’t for YOU, it’s for your clients! For the life of me, after creating dozens of websites in my creative career, I don’t understand how I JUST realized this myself! I know you’ve probably taken great pride in working with a designer and laying out the aesthetics of your site to perfection. You may even visit it a little more than necessary just to glean at the fruit of your hard labor. You’re proud of your website! As you should be.
When you have this mindset, you’ll create the kind of content to attract the customers you want to be working with. You’ll upload the kinds of images that appeal to your favorite kinds of clients. You will make sure your site’s speed and functionality are up to par. And you’ll constantly ask your community on social media what kind of updates THEY want to see from you. You do all of this to ensure you’re keeping them and their needs as your priority.
Do It Well or Not At All
When it comes to websites, as a designer, I’m of the camp, either do it right or not at all. I truly believe your business is better off with no website and just a strongly branded social media presence versus a website that is poorly maintained. Visitors and potential customers pay attention to EVERYTHING when they land on a website. People are inherently slow to spend money, so they want to make sure your business is trustworthy before they invest in it!
You could be the best cobbler in South Mississippi, but if your web presence doesn’t have key elements in place, visitors will question your credibility! Thus eventually they’ll choose to work with someone else who they perceive is. The sad part is that having a web presence was implemented to initially bring in MORE business, not drive people away! Let me show you how if done properly this can still be your story! Let’s get into 10 ways having a website that’s not up to par can actually be hurting your business instead of helping it!
10 Revealing Ways Your Website Is Stunting Your Growth
The photos are outdated.
If you still have the photos from when your website was first created, it’s likely time for an update! Potential clients usually visit a website several times before they finally purchase. They shouldn’t see primarily the same photos today that they saw last year! Ideally, you want to be rotating in new branded photos for your business every quarter. This sounds like a lot, I know, but trust me you’ll get so much use out of those images! Plus your brand will always have this fresh energy about it, and your clients will further trust that you’re serious about your brand’s messaging.
Your website is not mobile-friendly.
Over 50 percent of website traffic worldwide is generated from a cell phone! This statistic is expected to increase significantly, as more and more people opt to do everything on their phones. If your website doesn’t look as stunning on mobile as it does on desktop, stop what your doing, and fix that! More likely than not, someone’s first visit onto your site will be via mobile, with them going back later to view it on desktop. So make that first impression a great one by having a solidly designed mobile site. I love how Squarespace allows me to design sites for clients with pretty much an exact mirror of its desktop view. Check them out!
There’s too much text on the pages.
You want to constantly be putting yourself in the shoes of your website visitors. If they are arriving at your site and all they see is cluttered words from left to right, they’ll be clicking out of that window really soon! They have to be able to scan the site with ease in order to even make it to your sales page. One of the components of great web design is making sure there’s a good balance. You want just as much ‘white space’ as text as images. It’s a tricky game of proportions, but make sure you work with a designer who has good taste!
Your site’s load time is slow.
This is a no brainer for most people. If your website is taking too long to load, visitors will already be subconsciously annoyed by the time it finally does. This puts them into a secretive negative mood towards the content on your site from the get-go! One way to prevent this is making sure the images and graphics on your site aren’t too large! This step will allow the pages to load within optimal timing. People’s attention span is shorter now than it’s ever been. Make sure the time they’re spending viewing your website is well spent!
You’ve placed too many hard sales and not enough helpful content.
I know that we started a business to do what we love while still earning a living. But there has to be a balance of offering helpful tools and asking for a sale. Your website may be turning customers away if you have several pages asking for a sale but not providing them with an incentive to invest in you! People always want to know, ‘what’s in it for me?’ And while you may be thinking that your service and skill set is what’s in it for them, we live in a hugely entitled culture right now! So much so that we kind of can’t blame people for wanting a few things for free.
I’m willing to bet that you probably have visited a few websites and wanted to see what they could provide you with for free before you spent money! It’s just the nature of humans right now. So consider adding blogging for your business or Facebook lives. There is where you will give away valuable tips-something that captures you helping more than selling!
The stock photos you’re using are irrelevant or cheesy.
Again, I can’t stress enough the importance of high-quality branded images for your website! If you’ve been relying on stock photos that you’ve found online for free, it’s time to level up. The biggest problem with stock photography is that it’s not personal nor custom to your brand! Too many stock photos suggest you’re not willing to invest in your brand by presenting it in its most authentic way. See more here if you want to put an end to using boring, cheesy, stock photos, and ready to share your brand in a new and REAL way!
Your site’s functionality is too complicated.
Is it hard to navigate through your site? Is the font of the navigation bar too small? Does the site’s menu bar put you through hoops to find what you’re looking for? Small things like this really add up when it comes to converting visitors to clients! You want your site to not just be fancy but to be functional. If you have a shop on your website, is it set up to where people can see the product clearly? Is the checkout process seamless? Double-check that all of these things are as on point as possible! Doing so will keep customers happily browsing AND purchasing on your site!
The transactions you have in place take too long.
Are you trying to grow your email list or perhaps get people to opt into something upon making a purchase? These things are great practices to have in place, but if you make it TOO long and tedious, people will leave! Make your sign up processes cut dry and to the point. Who wants to feel like they’re being given the run around when they simply want to make a purchase or download a freebie? Keep in mind ways to make your site’s transactions easy and painless!
You have music auto-playing.
Okay, listen, just… don’t. I don’t even feel like you need a ton of convincing on this one, so let’s just leave it with a, ‘don’t do it!’ If you insist on a little more convincing, I will tell you that almost 100 percent of viewers who land on a page and are bombarded with unexpected music, leave! It’s distracting, as most people look at websites while doing something else. It’s also a bit unprofessional. Unless your a musician, which I still don’t recommend (I’d rather recommend having a button that alerts them to ‘click to listen’)-it just isn’t a good look! Trust me on this one!
Your messaging is unclear.
Finally, potential clients may be leaving your site if your copy is confusing. Is it very clear who you are and what you do? How blatant is it who you serve? Is where you’re located stated? Do go by different names, leaving people confused and unsure if you’re a solid business? Make your messaging and identity so clear you feel like you’re being redundant. When you feel like you’ve simplified your messaging to the point of exhaustion-THEN you’ve nailed it!
Know When to Get Help
As a small business owner, I’m willing to bet you have a lot of irons on the stove. There’s never enough time and often not enough resources to do all the things you dream of doing for your business. However, if you’ve committed to having a website, you have to stay committed to keeping it up. If you need help in an area, the hardest thing to do sometimes is asking for it. But I’m here to tell you, asking for help amongst your team or by outsourcing a person will save you from a ton of frustration! Frustrations like seeing visitors come onto your site but not supporting your work with sales or inquiries. It’s truly worth the investment to get help with running your website! You have to:
- make sure you aren’t doing any of those 10 things listed above, and if you start correcting them asap!
- get help if you need it
- Commit to keeping your website fresh and functional so that it can serve you now and for years to come!
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