You launched your website recently, or maybe you’ve had a website for a while, maybe you hired a web design company or did it yourself – but, whichever the case, you’re not seeing the results you were looking for and now you’re looking to find out why you’re website isn’t living up to your expectations. There are 3 major aspects of any website that you can look at to see where it needs improvement. Each one of these three is equally as important and they are all heavy topics – but for the purpose of this I’ve simplified things in a quick ready that should give you some idea when looking at your website.
If your website does not provide a great user experience you will definitely not get good results from it. A website’s usability consists of a lot of various things from more obvious broken menus, navigations, glitches, mobile responsiveness to more abstract like the usage of structure, fonts, color scheme in context with your target customers.
The following questions address a websites usability:
Is the website easy to navigate, clear navigation that works well, information organized in an easy to see and find format? How does this apply on mobile? In the context of who your customers are and why they are looking for your services, is the website framed to address that?
Examples of bad usability would be broken navigation bars that don’t link to the proper pages, contact information hard to find, no calls to action, confusing and uncommon layouts. Unresponsive websites that you can’t see on a cell phone unless you pinch zoom on it. Buttons that are close to the same color as the background so they don’t stand out. Those are mostly obvious and easy to spot. But let’s say your target customer is seniors and your website is features black backgrounds and small fonts – that would also be bad usability, so you have to look at usability from the context of your target customers. Who they are, what they want, why they want it and so on.
- Relevance: We’ve all seen websites where the about page (and sometimes even the homepage) includes lengthy paragraphs and pictures about the pets and hobbies of the company’s executives and employees – an attempt to add personality or bring a personal approach to the website. While to some degree this is ok and sometimes even beneficial, going on about hobbies on a website where the visitors are in a rush to find useful, relevant information to your services or products, is going to hurt your website and the results it delivers.
- Speak the customer’s language: Diving deep into technical jargon might equally hurt your website. Because, in most cases, visitors are looking for a company they can trust to provide a solution to a problem – not a masters degree degree on how to fix their problem. Knowing the context around your customers – who they are, why they are looking for your products and service, what they are worried about, and so on, will provide they framework of the content of your website.
- Well structured, well written: While it sounds obvious to some, the tons of websites with poorly structured and poorly written content paint a different picture. The text copy on your website has to be impeccably written to be understood, and structured to the journey of your customer. You don’t put a free estimate form before you’ve made clear the services you offer. What you say, how you say it, and the order in which you say it all matter.
This is probably the one I see most often as the biggest problem. You could have the best website in the world – with amazing usability that’s so well written and structured that it makes visitors line up around the block to give you their money – but without traffic, you have nothing.
Think of your website like a store. A store that you’ve put a million bucks into and it’s the most impressive store around. But nobody knows about your store. Will that make sales? No. Because you have to promote it and drive traffic to that store. A website is the exact same – it doesn’t just get traffic automatically.
How do you drive traffic to a website?
Online Advertising – google ads, facebook ads, youtube ads, etc.
Google Maps / My Business
Old School – flyers, business cards, word of mouth, networking, etc.
Any way possible.
And make sure you track your traffic with analytics properly to see what’s working for you and what does not.
Essentially, your website isn’t making money because it sucks from a usability angle, the content sucks, or it gets very little traffic.
Go through your website and look for issues and glitches; go on it from a cell phone too. Look at the visuals and the colors and ask; does it speak to my target customers, does it match the overall context?
Go through it once more this time closely reading the text. Is it easy to understand, easy to find the right information at the right time, is it in the correct order, and is it relevant to who my customers are, what they want, why they want it, what their worries are, etc.
Finally, take a look at your analytics and look at what your traffic looks like.
So which one is the problem for your website?
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