Following on from last weeks blog, this week we delve a little deeper into the critical elements that keep users engaged on a website and give you the best chance to turn them from browsers to buyers and loyal followers! After reading the following we assure you that you will officially be a website homepage genius! You're welcome. Intro
The appearance and functionality of a website is a key factor these days in determining the success of a business and how it can attract potential customers. With this in mind, it is important to invest in the overall design to give you the best chance of increasing sales and generating leads.
The homepage is usually the first page a visitor will land on, and there are several ways you can improve the appearance and user experience. In this article, we will be giving you 10 tweaks you really should have made or should be making to your homepage to help increase the overall success and conversion rate for your website.
1. Reduce Page Loading Speed
Let's get the hardest one out of the way first! Page loading speed is commonly mistaken for ‘site speed’. In fact, they are different. Page loading speed, also known as ‘page load time’, is the length of time it takes to display the content of a page. If you have a slow page load speed, search engines will crawl fewer pages, therefore having a negative effect on your indexation. Some examples of how you can reduce your homepage loading speed are as follows (don’t worry if you don’t know how to make these changes, either speak with your website developer or hire a freelancer from People Per Hour or Upwork and they will be able to assist you):
Leverage browser caching
Improve server response time
Use a content distribution network
Optimise images – Especially for mobile users, as heavy images can cause delays on mobile devices.
2. Headline (aka Hero) Images/Videos
Now this ones much easier! Embedding images and videos to your homepage will be beneficial. They will be one of the first things a user will see upon landing on your website. By adding visually pleasing, engaging images and enticing videos, the visitor is more likely to be captivated and remain on your site.
3. Position of your Social Media Icons
Social media is important for any business. It is one of the most effective ways of generating leads and potential customers. Most people will be keen to locate your business on certain platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, to name a few. But where you decide to position your social media icons is important! They need to be eye-catching and simple to locate for sure however the ideal place to insert your social media icons is in the footer! Remember you have probably spent lots of time and money getting people to your site and the last thing you want to do (especially if this is where you sell products) is push them off your site and away to the land of social media where distractions are a plenty and everyone and everything is vying for your attention. You need to keep people on your site for as long as you can, they are in your zone there and that's a better place for both of you!
4. Contact Information
Providing your contact information is important. Somebody who is genuinely interested in your product or service may have questions they want to ask. If your contact details are not readily available, they may become frustrated and will be more inclined to leave the site before making a purchase. You have the option to link them to a contact form, but providing an email or contact number is even better. Make sure the way you want people to contact you is clear and concise. For example, if you want visitors to call you then make sure a contact telephone number is at the top of your page or in your header. The amount of businesses that forget this simple but effective rule is simply astounding. Don’t be another statistic!
5. Currency Switcher
A currency switcher is an option that converts product prices, shipping costs, discount codes, taxes and other relevant prices between different currencies. This is beneficial if you offer a product or service outside of your country. Give it a try if you haven’t already got one of these installed!
6. Product Services, Benefits and Features
Any potential customer will want to know what makes your product or service better than your competitors. By including the services, benefits and features on your homepage will encourage the visitor to potentially make a purchase.
A unique selling proposition (USP), is something that can make your business stand out from your competition. Hone your USP/s as follows:
Make statements that differentiates you or your products from your competitors
Focus on what your customers value
7. Call to Action
Call to action (CTA) is a prompt that encourages the user to take a specific action. Examples are ‘Sign Up’ or ‘Buy Now’, and will be either a button or hyperlink or a telephone number in the header as we touched upon in the above Contact Information section. A CTA is important for your website as it explains what the user should do next if they want to either make contact or place an order. Don’t leave your website visitors hanging around not knowing what to do next.
The old “grab it while you can” pressure trick! While not suitable for everyone of course, adding a countdown timer to a homepage is the perfect way to add scarcity to campaigns and offers as and when they become available. Adding this tool will increase higher conversion rates for you and ultimately help to make you more profit in your business.
9. Instill Confidence
If it is the first time a potential customer has visited your site, they will understandably be cautious of who they are buying from. By including genuine reviews from previous customers, testimonials, awards and certifications that you may have or have achieved will instill confidence that you are a reputable company meaning they will be more likely to purchase from you than your competitors.
10. Chatbots We’ve saved the best till last! There are several reasons installing a Chatbot on your site is important and is often thought of as the ‘King of Conversion’. There are many to choose from but we would recommend either Manychat or Mobile Monkey. Both services offer a vast number of features (with free starter plans too) and will enable you to respond automatically and faster to your customers, therefore leaving a great first impression.
From automatically helping customers with questions, sending brochures & price lists to booking appointments or replying to your facebook posts, these tools really do have the lot and yes it can all be done AUTOMATICALLY without you lifting a finger! (Well apart from setting it up of course!) A Chatbot is one of the best tools for providing excellent customer service and in many instances more effective than having an email database. Emails can be gathered with these tools too and then automatically added to your email database. You can also remarket and reach back out to people via messenger too, this is where a chatbots open conversion rate really leads the way. Conversions via chatbots significantly outway email conversions so if you don’t have a Chatbot on your website today then it could be a game changer for you and your business. If you want to speak with us further regarding Chatbots then feel free to contact us as at WISE we can help with implementing these highly effective tools for you.
Finally, here are some extra little bonuses and additional items to consider for your homepage which will be sure to set you apart from your competitors:
Use of a Split Testing Tool
Ensure your homepage is optimised for mobile and tablet browsing
Effective SEO audits
A Proof of Purchase tool (useful for some eCommerce sites)
Inclusion of a FAQ Section
Like this article and found it useful? Please feel free to share the love below via the social buttons. Watch out for our next blog coming soon! #MarketingAdvice #WebsiteMaintenance #HomepageMustHaves #Chatbots #SocialMedia #ConversionRateOptimisation #CRO #WISEDigitalMarketing #WISEBlog