Do you have a great social media presence? Awesome. Do you have a big budget for marketing? Great. Do you work really hard on the content you produce? Even better. You may feel set if you have or do all three of these things but, the truth is no matter how successful your social media is or how unique your marketing strategy is, your website will make or break you.
If a potential customer sees your ad or checks out your Instagram and likes what they see, the very next place they will go to find more information or potentially buy your product is your website. If your website is unclear, confusing, or not convincing enough, you’ve just lost a potential customer who lost interest because they’re confused.
Think of your marketing strategy as a map: it’s your job to have every single one of your marketing avenues guide your customer towards wanting to buy into what you can offer them. Leaving them with a mediocre and unintentional website leaves them hanging.
If you want to polish up your website and guide your customers into buying into the service or product you provide, keep on reading. These are our top 5 tips on ways to make your website more engaging, but don’t worry, we also have 15 examples of businesses whose websites are killing the game to give you some inspiration too.
Here’s a preview into the 5 ways you can check how your websites doing in about 60 seconds or less:
1. Provide clear next steps
2. Keep it simple
3. Display customer testimonials on your home page
4. Have a lead generator
5. Offer fresh content
1. Provide Clear Next Steps:
As we’ve said before, you want your marketing strategies to guide your potential customers. The worst thing you can do for your customer is to send them to a website that doesn’t provide clarity. If your end goal is a sale or a booked appointment, lead them there.
It’s also important to have unique buttons across your entire website that continue to point your customers in this same direction. If they are looking for a next step, it should be blatantly obvious what that is; don’t make it vague or unclear to the point that they have to search around your website for it.
Kind’s website does a great job at leading their customers towards a potential next step. Upon first visiting their website they have a very clear call to action that is meant to provoke customers into doing what they want them to do: buy snacks.
Spotify’s website makes it easy for brand new customers to find what they are looking for. Their website’s next step also includes an incentive by providing customers with a one-month free trial. When a potential customer heads to this website it isn’t unclear where they should head next if they are considering getting a Spotify subscription.
Ipsy, a subscription-based beauty brand, makes it clear what potential customers should do next by leaving a “Get Started” link on their webpage. This link leads their customers to a beauty quiz that then creates a custom subscription plan for them.
2. Keep It Simple:
One thing that many businesses get wrong when creating their websites is that they flood them with unnecessary information and leave out all of the information that their customers are actually looking for.
Your front page doesn’t need to be filled with paragraphs of information that answers questions your customers never asked. It also doesn’t need to be filled with a long list of your company’s history. Your customer wants to know what you do and how you do it.
This one sentence header, “Incredible last-minute hotel deals” brings clarity to exactly what this company does for its customers. When I see this homepage I am able to understand, in a few words, what Hotel Tonight can help me do.
The Knot provides customers with an “All-In-One Wedding Planner.” This one-liner helps bring clarity to why they exist without overwhelming the customer upfront.
Birchbox’s website is another great example of bringing clarity to why you exist, but this time in more than one sentence. Their homepage speaks to a problem that their potential customers may have and communicates that Birchbox exists to resolve that problem.
3. Display Customer Testimonials:
One huge barrier for potential customers is their fear of losing money. No one wants to buy something or buy into something that may not provide the results they desire. This is why your website should do a great job at displaying reviews or stories from previous customers who were satisfied with what your company provided them.
These stories and testimonials will help reassure your potential customers that you know what you are doing and will provide them with the results that they are looking for.
Curology, a subscription skin care company, dedicates an entire page of their website to photos and reviews from satisfied customers. These reviews help to persuade those who may have some apprehensions in purchasing a skin care plan, by providing them with tangible examples of how Curology has helped clear up many other’s skin.
Fund The Nations has similarly dedicated a portion of their website to show off previous designs they have customized for customers. These pictures provide examples of their work and allow customers to know what they can expect from them.
Slack’s way of sharing success stories is a little different from the previous two but just as effective. They’ve put together a whole page on their website with a collection of stories from different companies who Slack has successfully helped get more organized.
4. Have A Lead Generator
Emails are a great marketing tool to utilize, but they only work if you have an email list to send them to. The best way to collect emails of potential is by having an email pop-up on your website that offers those customers with some sort of incentive for giving you their email. It could be anything from an e-book with 5 of your best tips for x, y, and z or a discount code to use on their next purchase.
Once you’ve set up an email pop-up that provides them with an incentive for opting to give you their email, you can begin to grow your email list and start to use it as a marketing tool. After you’ve created a decent list, there are tons of email providers out there that can help you begin to organize your marketing emails and track data on their success.
Later’s pop-up incentivizes their customers to provide their email addresses in exchange for some Instagram marketing tips. Providing resources like these will make your customers want to give you their email address.
Here’s another good example of a great email pop-up that has an incentive for leaving your email. In this case, in exchange for your email, Backlinko will send you free exclusive tips on increasing traffic to your website (something everyone wants, therefore something more people will exchange their email address for).
Barnes and Noble’s email pop-up incentivizes customers with a discount of 15% off any item in their next order. This makes it easier for you to build your email list and easier for your customers to get what they are looking for at a cheaper price. I mean come on now, who doesn’t love discounts?
5. Offer Fresh Content:
Our final top 5 website tip is to refresh your website often with new content. Make it clear to your customers that you are consistent in keeping your website up to date and show your recurring customers that you are always working to get better and willing to change things up.
Offering fresh content can be anything from monthly blog posts, new pictures of recent products or projects, or even updating your testimonials and changing up your layout every once in a while.
Updated and helpful content can also be as easy as leaving links or avenues to other places where you update your content more frequently, like social media. By providing links to these platforms you’re able to keep your customers in the loop on what you’ve been working on as well.
HubSpot is a great example of a website that is constantly being refreshed with new content. They have a consistent blog where they provide advice on everything from SEO to business name ideas.
Aspyn Ovard is a social media influencer with millions of followers across her many social media platforms. With her busy schedule, she is able to keep her blog up to date with new content by leaving links to her various social media pages. By doing this she allows new and recurring readers to see what she has been up to lately.
Quaker refreshes their website consistently by leaving links to Facebook, Youtube, and Pinterest recipes that customers can make using Quaker products. They also update the look of their page often as new products and lines are released.
Make Your Website Better:
There they are! Now that you know why your website is important and you have 5 ways to make it better, it’s vital that you get to work. Marketing is competitive so don’t wait around before making your website the best it can be; after all, it could be the one thing making or breaking your business.