Fact: a badly designed website can lose you new business because like it or not, prospects will actually research your company and its personnel starting with the website.
If you value your service offering at $10,000 and your website reflects a service offering valued at $1,000, your prospects will move on. Quickly.
They simply won’t believe you’re worth engaging with.
So, how do you know your website is past its use by date, needs an upgrade or worse still, was never even developed with any consideration to your target customer in the first place?
For the majority of businesses, having a website is like owning pair of Air Jordan sneakers in the 90’s – you owned them because every other kid on the block did. The “why” didn’t matter, you just had to have them because everyone else did.
While many businesses owners opt to have a website because that’s what the trend dictates, few rarely pause to consider the why. Why do you even need a website?
What is the actual point of having one?
Donning a pair of Air Jordan’s won’t give you any magical basketball abilities, but a well-planned, beautifully designed and perfectly executed website can actually work to generate you new business.
A business should have a website reflective of the value propositions they bring to their customers.
It is a powerful business tool and should be viewed as much internally by all members of staff. A website that articulates your value as a company can be leveraged multiple times over to make money either through tangible avenues like online sales, or intangibly by showcasing your brand.
Yet organisations spend so little time collectively giving any consideration to their websites’ online presence that the self-fulfilling prophecy becomes inevitable; the website “doesn’t work” for the business as a sales tool and becomes just another digital ‘desert town’ with tumbleweeds blowing down the main street.
It is relatively easy to overhaul your website and take your business to that next level from a digital standpoint. You need just three ingredients
- You need to actively recognise that this is an investment in the business and personnel within the organisation need to buy into the reasons for the redevelopment / new development.
- You need to be able to articulate who your ideal target audience(s) are and why you are the solution to their problems AND then speak to that target audience through the websites’ messaging.
- You need to engage with a trusted digital partner who knows as much about website design, development and online customer acquisition as you know about your core business services.
Actively contributing to the websites’ content footprint and creating the perception that you are a leader in your industry is the ongoing requirement to supplement the above.
Case Study: When a Website Leaves Money on The Table
Several years ago, we consulted briefly with a gentleman in the financial sector. He recognised the potential in utilising his website as a tool for new customer acquisitions into his small firm.
Unfortunately, the price point for his core service was considerably higher than what the “clip-art-esque” nature of his website reflected.
Over a period of a few months, we were able to increase visitation to his website for his target audience seeking this core service by about 20X what he was previously receiving.
He actually became the top-ranked website in Google for his sector for the most competitive keyword in the city he was based in.
Over the following 3-months, he received exactly zero enquiries through his website. From over one thousand new website visitors who were his potential customers. Zero.
We recommended this client consider redeveloping his site to address his lacking website conversion capabilities. He opted for the “this online thing is not working for my business” approach and left things as they were.
Leaving a legion of potential clients – and money – on the table.
Any investment he made in redesigning his website would have paid itself off within 6-months.
Quick Engagement Is Critical
The rough statistics show you’ve got about 3-5 seconds to engage a prospect before they move on to your competitors’ site. Slow load times, non-secure notifications, a bad design or a complicated navigation is almost a guarantee that your prospect will not hang around for very long. They want to feel safe and that the trust they’re putting in you is verifiable.
A strong brand in the marketplace is not a silver bullet. Such a thing does not exist, but there are several key factors you should consider if you want to redevelop your website to your advantage.
- Use your website as an educational tool. Not to talk about your company and why you’re the perfect vendor for your prospects, but to actually provide insights into how you understand your prospects’ core problem. This helps to build trust.
- Make a point of addressing these pain points and creating information relevant to them and how that pain can be alleviated.
- People buy people, and if a prospect is far enough through the buy-cycle, any BDM or business owner worth their salt should close them, but your key personnel should always be represented on the website with appropriate photography that is professionally shot.
- Articulate your Value Propositions succinctly.
- Make it easy for your prospects to contact you. Contact forms that don’t work, incorrect phone numbers or contact information that needs a bloodhound to sniff it out looks unprofessional.
Great Business Development Managers and a competent Sales Team should leverage their networks, converse fluently with prospects and will most likely be very congenial at networking events they attend.
They are the human face (one of them) of your business and any positive impressions they make on behalf of your organisation are vital to attracting new business. But with the exchange of any business card and a handshake with a loose agreement to “catch up for a coffee in the near future” you can bet that prospect will make time to visit your website once that initial meeting is over.
What would be the impression of your business then?