Is Your Website Working For You? 3 Strategies to Get You on Track
Why do you have a website?
Your website may look nice, but does it ‘Work’? The answer to ‘why do you have a website?’, should be whatever your single most important conversion action is. That could be:
- I have a website to generate leads through my contact form for home renovations
- I have a website to sell copies of my e-Book on canine massage
- I have a website to generate phone call leads for a website design company
- I have a website to sell hiking and camping products
The point is, while you may have a physical storefront that drives your bottom-line, a large majority of your customers will try to find you starting with a Google search from their mobile phone. This article is designed to demonstrate 3 common scenarios that hamper a website’s ability to perform. If you learn something, let us know, we’d love to hear from you. We’d love to work with you even more!
Let’s get your website working for you!
In a recent study, the percentage of mobile searches that contained a ‘near me’ intent was 82% of searches. That’s 82% of mobile phone searches were to research a local business. You can’t afford to miss out if you run a business that relies on a physical storefront. So, where should you look when figuring out why your website is or isn’t working for you? I’ve broken it down into 3 areas that you can assess in order to build a strategy to improve the performance of your website.
- Your website isn’t getting any traffic
- Your website is getting traffic, but it’s low quality
- You’re getting good quality traffic, but no one is converting
Help!? I’m Not Getting Any Traffic to My Website
This symptom is certainly the most common, but still alarming to a site owner. We see this most frequently with brand new websites; this is natural and makes sense. The old adage “Build it and they will come” just isn’t true on the internet. It takes a very well thought-out strategy and expert implementation to be successful. The other less common reason for lack of traffic is due to a history of SEO penalties from Google after years of bad SEO advice. This is very hard to recover from, but usually means a complete SEO Audit and a comprehensive backlink clean up and ‘disavow’ campaign. That overly-nerdy topic is food for another conversation.
So, how do you get traffic to your website? If you’re lucky to have a really killer product or service that’s in high demand and priced well, you can let social media pay your bills for a while. With some captivating imagery and frequent social media posts, you can develop a solid social campaign that drives traffic back to the website. This is nearly instant traffic, however, you will need to build some buzz and be very strategic. Posting on a whim without a strategy will not work.
New websites can benefit from a combination of Organic SEO and PPC from Google, Facebook or BING.
Another method for quick traffic is a Pay Per Click campaign with Google (or BING). There are other ways to buy traffic, such as with Google Display or Facebook, however, nothing on the internet beats Google for search traffic, paid or otherwise. For a few dollars a day you can pay for high-quality traffic to arrive at your brand new website. Bear in mind, if your market is remotely competitive, you’ll be in for a fight with increasing cost per keyword clicks. Be sure to work with a professional who can ensure that your money is being well spent and your campaigns continue to improve and convert.
In the end, nothing delivers the long lasting and high-quality traffic more than a well-planned Search Engine Optimization (SEO) campaign. This is a long-term play. If done correctly, your website will experience sustained, long-term and high-quality traffic. Bear in mind, this takes time. A realistic timeline for an SEO campaign to start paying dividends is in the 6 – 12-month range, especially in competitive markets. You really need someone with experience on your side here. You need to be perfect from the start, as a wrong step can cast your website into the depths of Google’s bad graces. A Google penalty can deal a death blow to your Google search traffic for quite a long time.
I’ve Got Good Google Rankings, but My Traffic Is Low
This is also common for websites that are poorly optimized or have had incorrect and low-quality SEO advice for your intended keywords. When I hear someone mention that they have great rankings, my immediate response is ‘could you please confirm the exact phrases that you have great rankings for’? More often than not, they are either heavily branded, or involve marketing buzzwords that don’t exist outside staff or industry people. You’d be surprised how often this happens; rankings without traffic is a failed keyword and optimization strategy, full-stop!
The simple answer to this problem is SEO; a comprehensive SEO campaign from Audit to Monthly Optimization. The first part of this is a professional keyword research exercise. We need to ignore marketing buzzwords and general industry BS in order to really find those keywords that your ideal customers are searching for. There is a myriad of keyword tools out there to do this, and it’s important to cover at least a couple in order to discover the common areas of traffic. High traffic in one tool might not match another tool, so it’s crucial to gather as much data as possible before combing through the list. Your ideal keyword targets are those that have high traffic potential and limited competition.
So, this is straight up, you’re ranking for the wrong keywords. Or, you are obsessively searching for yourself using branded or marketing terms. These are often referred to as ‘vanity keywords’. They look good but are useless for any meaningful traffic.
It’s also possible that you have a terribly optimized Search Engine Results snippet.
I’m Getting Good Quality Traffic, but No One Is Contacting Me or Buying My Stuff
This is the best position to be in. This means that you’ve managed to develop good trust and reputation in Google Search, however, you’re just not generating the leads. The cause for this is that you’re not making it easy enough for your visitors to do what you’re hoping they’ll do. People arrive at your website and for some reason or another, they don’t manage to get to your contact form or could find your phone number.
If your website isn’t converting what we know to be quality traffic, the website is the culprit. The fix for this is called Conversion Optimization, and this is my favorite marketing thing! Okay, it’s my favorite part of helping websites work better! Conversion Optimization is about making your website work better and guiding your visitors towards a conversion – a phone call, contact form, etc… – in an easy and intuitive manner. This is the holy grail of website optimization and after some testing and revising, your website will convert customers for you for years to come.
Once you get the hang of A/B and multivariate testing, measurement, and deployment, there is no telling how hard your website will work for you. However, this process involves escaping from your ‘site owner’ mindset and into the mind of your customer.
You’re the worst possible person to test usability of your own website!
This isn’t as easy as you think since you are intimately close to your website. You know every nook and cranny and can navigate even the most unfriendly pages on your website. That’s not the case for your visitors. They have no idea how your website works, so every touch point needs to be clear and intuitive. You are their guide and you need to guide them to the promised land of the contact form or phone call in a way that makes it seem like they chose the path all by themselves.
Everyone is Using Their Phone!
In case you missed it at the very top of this article, the most important similarity between all of your potential customers is the device that they are holding to research you. The ‘mobile version’ of your website has to be amazing! It has to instantly convey the goal of your site and the options that your customers will want to research prior to converting to a phone call, contact form or a store visit.
Your visitors are in control, not you. Listen to every bit of feedback that they can offer and take it very seriously.
Don’t be fancy, don’t use too many buzzwords, and listen to any and all feedback. You’re NOT in control, your visitors are. You have to learn from their movements through the website. Where did they go, how long did they stay, and what pages did they leave from. Research and test until you ‘ring the bell‘ for every persona (customer type) that you’ve developed for your website. Which Symptom Do You Connect Most With? Are you currently experiencing any of these symptoms? Give us a holler and we can help guide you towards your next steps. Or leave us a note below and we can chat.