What are the essential traits of great Web sites? After you visit a site and find yourself staying awhile, what makes you stay? What grabs your attention? The answer is a common sense answer! So how can you ensure that your website has these qualities? Many websites are designed by third-party designers, use this article to ensure they give you value for money.

We generally stay on websites that give away something valuable. It is obvious that valuable information, software, advice, humor keep your visitors coming back. But is coming back enough – you have to ensure that your visitors take action.

How to encourage visitors to navigate, subscribe and buy!

There are many ways to improve your website performance. Have a look on these guidelines and just try to apply them on your own website.

  • WIIFM – What’s in it for me? This is the question that everyone asks when they go somewhere new. Your website is no different. In order to answer this question, you must speak in the prospects terms about what they are interested in. Then, and only then, will you earn the right to their attention
  • The content of your website should be CREDIBLE and ORIGINAL. If visitors find the information of your website useful, they will likely revisit it. Providing information does not necessarily mean providing lot of data. Select conscientiously your content and don’t overwhelm people with lot of useless information.
  • Know your target audience intimately, and become the subject matter expert for them. Share everything you learn, that is of value – so they don’t need to visit other websites, since you have it all. Keep your visitors up to date by starting a newsletter for example.
  • Update your website regularly. Always offer something new to your visitors. You’ve got to have fresh content to keep them coming back. This includes new articles, testimonials and products.
  • Be clear and concise, with easy to read pages. It means that you have to choose colors for your text that are suitable to your background. To my mind the best text color is definitely the black color. Thus you have much more choice for your background. Of course don’t choose dark colors for your background, use lighter shades that are easy to read.
  • Make your navigation easy. Hence your website has to be well organized with a clear structure. Your navigation bar must be consistent and in the same place on every page of your website. Always include a sitemap on every page, as this helps visitors who may get lost and also helps the search engine increase your rankings.
  • Urge people to take action. Consequently your homepage must be VERY attractive to make them stay on your website and click on links. Your homepage must emphasize the benefits of your product to the customer. Write a killer headline which clearly states the biggest benefit you offer.

Keep in mind that your objective is to grab visitors’ attention with a benefit that convinces them to stay

  • Use graphics sparingly to convey information. Don’t overwhelm your website with unnecessary graphics and images, unless they serve a specific purpose. If they are just decoration, forget them. They will just divert people, which do not necessarily mean that they will buy from you!
  • Collect information from your visitors, to ensure your content is relevant.When you do this, put them at ease with an opt-in-form or an order form, don’t forget to create a visible link to your “Privacy Policy” or “Legal Statement”. Hence your visitors will not get worried about giving personal information and your sales conversion will not be affected. You can place your link at the bottom of each page for example.
  • Browse through other websites.

Use these few tips for your own website: check what you have done correctly and what you could modify. These tips are general tips; keep in mind that your website has to be original as well. Focus on the content and emphasize why you are different from your competitors.

To improve your own website, don’t hesitate to browse through other sites. Find out what they are doing well and where they are failing. That will give you some relevant to change yours.

If you need help on your site, or indeed any aspect of increasing your sales, feel free to contact us. The best way is to request a free web health check.

Your website is your 24/7 marketing and sales person. Are you confident enough to brief your web designer. If you need help in organising a brief, or writing copy, you should avail of ourfree web health check.

This article was written by Charlotte Du Limbert, marketing manager of 3R Sales and Marketing – www.3r.ie. For previous articles like this, visit 3R’s Articles. Alternatively, subscribe to Success our free monthly Information Bulletin with sales and marketing articles.