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Archive for the ‘Website Usability’ Category

How Your Website Copyright Date Can Improve Online Sales

It’s that time of the year and I just updated the copyright date on this blog – which is one of many that I manage. It made me wonder what others did in terms of managing the copyright date on their website.

Are you someone who updates your website copyright date every year or do you not include the date on the copyright info? If you include the date, do you show the range (i.e. 1999-2014) or just the most recent year? (Please let me know if the comments below). My preference is to show a history in the date because I believe that showing longevity online can increase the trust factor with your prospects.

Why Does it Matter?
Just because Google returns a website in it’s search results, does not guarantee a sale. There are many factors that people use to determine whether or not to trust a website and for some odd reason, I an one of those people who looks at the copyright dates on a website. Right or wrong, I use it as an indicator of how up to date the website is and I know I am not alone.

Let’s say I end up on a website where I want to make a purchase and see a copyright date that is 5 years old (this just happened last week). I start to wonder if the ecommerce security is up to date as well – or if the company is still in business – and it may impact my buying decision. In this case, someone lost a sale to someone who had a horrible sales process and even charged more money. The main reason was that they lost my trust by not caring about their website.

If you were looking for a “best practice” to add to your website “to do” list, now you have it.

Have a great day!

Using Your Smart Phone to Reach Hot Prospects

A great way to improve your website conversion rates is by using a “live operator” service where prospects can get their questions answered by you as they are preparing to make a buying decision. Many people would rather ask a few questions via chat as opposed to calling where they feel they might be pressured into a purchase and others may not want to send an email because they don’t know how long it will take to get a response.

There are many great solutions on the market for live operator services, but one in particular that I found helpful was Website Alive. What I like the most about Website Alive is the Phone App that allows you to run your chat client from your Smart Phone. For an independent business owner this allows you to connect with real time prospects without having to sit in front of a computer all day or outsourcing this task. The end result; higher conversion rates and increased profits.

Get your free 10 day trial of Website Alive today!

News Websites Don’t Understand The Web

Is it just me or does anyone else have a problem with the news sites that make you register to read an article? How in the world are you supposed to send links to people and expect them to read it? I know when I get a link that requires me to register, I just think “I am sure it was a good story, but who has time for that”.

Feel free to comment.

4 questions every web site owner needs to answer

I was in a meeting the other day and these questions came up with regard to marketing a web site. They may seem basic, but amazingly in the midst of our quest for visual and technical excellence (along with web traffic and rankings), we can miss what is right in front of us.

1. Why would someone come to our web site? – What are you offering specifically, and how are you getting this message out to your prospective audience?

2. Why would someone stay on our site and do business? – Three things come to mind here:

Usability: Can they locate (as in, is it easy to navigate to) what they think they came to your site for?

Marketing Message: Are you sending the right message? Are you answering the customers question or solving their problem? Is your offer clear? Are you offering content, services, or resources of value?

First Impression: Is your site professionally designed? Does it paint your business in a positive light, or does it look like your kid in middle school made it? Do you use any site seals to increase consumer confidence (i.e. BBB Online, Guardian, Thawte)?

3. Why would they come back to our site? – Are you keeping them current on the subject matter (through blogs, newsletters, forums, etc.)? Are you capturing visitor and customer information so that you can continue to market to them? (i.e. name, email, RSS subscription, offer a newsletter, etc) Do you offer a one time sale or repeat business? Many would think if they offer a one time sale, the job is done. Opportunities are always missed out is you are not marketing on the back end for repeat business. Once you have earned someones trust enough for them to spend money with you, they are more likely to spend more money with you. Don’t leave it on the table!

4. How will they find our web site? – The obvious question that most people ask at the expense of the other 3 above. The answer – a solid search marketing plan that should include some, if not all, of the following:

– Organic Search Optimization
– Pay Per Click Search
– Getting listed in Directories and Niche Portals
– Online & Offline Press Releases
– Affiliate Programs
– Social Media Marketing
– Viral Marketing
– Article Marketing
– Contests
– Advertising
– Joint Ventures
– Offering free tools or services

I hope that was helpful, but most of all I hope it got you to take a look at your site and answer a question other than “how do we get people to our web site?” and make any improvements necessary.

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