Start with a clear navigation. Organize your pages into logically-named categories and use standard terms on your menu. Visitors don’t want to guess where to go. They don’t want to analyze what you mean. And they don’t have the patience to embark on a scavenger hunt for facts.
Use conversational English. Despite what your high school English teacher may have thought, nobody wants to read text that sounds like a term paper. Yawn. Write copy as though you’re speaking directly to the visitor. Use second person like “you” and “we.” Contractions are fine. And a friendly, informal tone is better than stiff, corporate-speak.
Avoid industry jargon. Don’t use words or phrases that your visitors may not recognize. Use familiar terminology.
Provide all the relevant information. When people search the web, they’re seeking answers. If your site doesn’t provide the facts, the visitor will move on to the next one in the search results. Don’t be afraid of sharing too much, and that includes prices. Studies show information-rich websites are the most effective in converting visitors into serious prospects.
Leave out the hype. Visitors don’t want spin. They expect honesty and transparency. They crave facts so they can make an educated decision. Place all your cards on the table and let visitors draw their own conclusions.
Make your home page a to-the-point summary. Since your home page is the most common entrance to your website, it should describe how customers will benefit from your content, products, or services. If visitors can’t quickly figure out what’s in it for them, they’ll click that back button. Poof, gone!
Create unique landing pages for specific topics. While you might want everyone to come through the front door, the home page of your website, that might not be the best strategy. A more targeted approach is to create landing pages that speak to specific subjects. If someone is looking for information on say your product’s military application, he should land on your page that is dedicated to that subject. Landing pages convert at a higher rate than do home pages.
Let pictures help tell your story. Stock photos are pretty, but do they tell visitors about the real you? No, they’re often too generic. You can use them in some places on your site to help break up what would otherwise be a copy-heavy page, but when it comes to products and people, real photos work best. Visitors want to see what they’re buying and who they’re buying it from. According to 10 Simple Rules of Visual Storytelling, “stories in text bore, stories told visually engage — and sell.”
Include trust-building content. Explain why your company is uniquely qualified to provide its products or services. Include some details about your company’s history and achievements, especially on your About Us page. Add a photo of the founder if it’s relevant. Consider dedicating a page to testimonials or case studies. These third-party endorsements hold weight. Customers buy from companies they trust.
Keep your website up to date. If visitors notice that your content isn’t current, then your site loses all credibility. Continually update your site, add to it and remove any information that is obsolete. The last part of that sentence is critical, so I hope you didn’t miss it. You shouldn’t only add content. You need to also delete anything that’s no longer relevant. If the good information is buried, your visitor might never find it.
Use a straightforward layout. Nobody likes clutter, and that includes visitors to your website. Clean, simple and organized works best. The more intuitive, the better, so visitors can easily find what they need.