You want to improve your Web site and increase ROI. What’s the first area on your site you tackle?
If you’re like most SMBs, you look to spruce up your content first. And with good reason! Improving the content assets on your Web site can lead directly to higher sales, customer loyalty, and increased brand awareness. It’s often also the “cheapest” site change to make when you’re on a tight budget. But where should you start?
Below are a few content areas to improve upon to increase ROI and site conversions:
Information-Rich Product Pages
This is big, especially for a small business Web site where trust and point of difference are so vital.
It’s safe to assume that a consumer who lands on a product/service page is in the process of making a decision. They’re asking themselves:
- Will this product help me and serve my need?
- How is this product different from others on this site and on competitor sites?
- Should I buy this, right now?
- Can I trust this company? Do they seem knowledgeable?
When you have a consumer reading over your product pages, this is a sensitive time in the conversion funnel. To get them to click that “buy” button or fill out your contact form, those pages need to be as informative and standout as possible. They need to convince a potential buyer that purchasing this product is the right decision. To do that, write your product pages to be as detailed and user-focused as possible. They should also be written to sound like your customer.
If you’re Woot your product pages will be written to inspire a giggle and in the voice of Web geeks. If you’re Apple, you’ll focus on the shininess of new features. Know your customer and then write your product pages to be as informative and wooing as possible.
Last year we told you that more businesses were blogging than not blogging. And according to new data from Blogging.org, this still holds true. Adding a blog to your business remains one of the most effective (and cost-effective) marketing strategies available to you, especially as a small business owner or consultant.
Your blog gives you a forum that you own and which you can use to create linkable assets (naturally increasing your SEO), establish your brand and authority, and makes you a friend of the search engines. Duct Tape Marketing’s John Jantsch believes blogging is even more critical in the age of social media, and I agree.
If you’re not blogging and you want a way to increase site ROI, this is it. Start a blog.
Another ROI-filled content asset to add to your Web site is email newsletters. Email newsletters give you a chance to maintain a relationship with your customer long after their purchase. It takes you from vendor to friend and strengthens the connection that a consumer has with your brand. They may have visited your Web site to fill a specific need, but now you can build upon on that.
You can keep customers informed about what your company is up to, you can tell stories, you can let them know what’s fresh on your Web site, you can be an information source for what’s happening in your industry, etc. You go from the person who sold them that lamp to the friend they have over every Wednesday for coffee. You become someone they recognize.
If you’re intimidated by email newsletters because you’re not sure what you’d include, don’t be. Shape your newsletter as an informal “letter to your customers”, to republish articles you’ve written elsewhere, or simply to highlight what’s new on your site.
Higher-Quality Photography & Video
Just because they don’t use words doesn’t mean the photography and video aren’t important site content elements to consider. When it comes to photography, get away from using stock photos. Instead, use high-quality photos to represent your products, your staff, your office building, and anything else you choose to visualize on your Web site.
Not only will this set you apart from other sites on the Web, but it will help customers to get to know you. We want to see what your real staff looks like, not the same stock female face we recognize from every other site on the Web.
When it comes to video – use it. Neil Patel recently shared some explainer video best practices to help everyone get the most from their video content. This is advice Neil has used to drive an extra $21,000 month in new income. I’d take it.
Product Guides & Comparisons
As consumers we can be a pretty insecure bunch. We want to make sure that we’re buying the right product and the best one for our needs. We want to know why Product A is different from Product B, and if Product C can do that thing Product D also does. Consider offering product comparisons to help your customers answer these natural questions and make them more confident in their buying decisions. Maybe it means creating comparison charts or maybe it’s a downloadable fact sheet. The more content you can create and the more you can use it to tell a story, the more customers will appreciate it.
If you’re like most businesses, you receive questions from your customers every day, most of which you’ve answered before. Instead of emailing customers individually about the same thing each day, start saving those questions and answering them in a site Q&A section. Create a resource that you can build links to and that customers, new and old, can take advantage of. Anything you can put on your site that is intended to ease customer fears is going to be good for your business and work toward increasing ROI.
Above are just a few content-based site improvements you can make to increase the value of your Web site to your customers. What others have you added along the way?
Image credit: fotografiedk / 123RF Stock Photo
With blogging I would add that the occasional guest blog post on a well-chosen site can also yield a positive return.
Hi Lisa. Absolutely right about product pages. Site owners tend to make the assumption that when a visitor lands on product page they are ready to buy and all that is needed is a basic description of the product and a buy now button. Good content development at this stage is key to conversion and SEO.
Hi Lisa, great article. Agree with your advice and the comments made by Steve Pronger. Find product guides, white papers, free user guides and even simple infographics can be a great way to engage with customers, foster trust and credibility and increase your site ROI.