Every business owner knows you need a website to remain relevant in today’s competitive marketplace, but an Internet presence alone isn’t enough to generate sales. Using goal-based website design principles, however, will help you ensure that your site actually boosts the amount of business you bring in.
What Is a Goal-Based Website?
A goal-based website needs to be an integral part of your company’s marketing strategy. As the name implies, goal-based sites are designed to accomplish specific objectives. These typically include overall business goals such as:
- converting visitors into customers
- building your brand
- improving customer interactions
- reducing your advertising costs
After you decide on goals, you must decide how to measure them. If your goal is to increase sales, for example, you’ll want to know how many people completed your contact form. If you want to improve customer interaction, you might view statistics for page views and sign-ups for your newsletter. All of these goals can be easily tracked and measured in Google Analytics, which is a free service that tracks and reports website traffic.
Optimizing Your Site
Your goals will be easier to reach if your company’s website is designed to appeal to customers and make them want to get in touch with you to learn more about your services. A common mistake many companies make is focusing too heavily on self-promotion. Although your potential customers will want to be sure you’re qualified, you may be more likely to convince them to click on your “contact us” form if you focus on the things that matter to them.
Optimize your website by focusing on:
- Customer-Centric Content: A good website design addresses your customer’s pain points and offers to help them find a solution. Write web pages, articles and blog posts focusing on the issues that concern your clients, and add a portfolio or project gallery that includes descriptions and photographs of your best work.
- Statistics: Statistics help convince clients that they need your product or service. For example, if your company sells generators to East Coast clients, you might want to mention that GE determined that consumers living east of the Mississippi experienced three times as many power outages as those who lived west of the river.
- A Variety of Contact Methods: Lead generation is much more efficient if you offer several contact methods. “Contact us” forms offer a simple way for customers to get in touch with you, but you’ll still want to include your email address and telephone number for customers who want to get in touch with you immediately. Better yet, add a live chat function to your site to provide instant gratification for customers. No matter what method the customer uses to reach you, make sure you respond quickly.
- Rapid Loading: If your site takes too long to load, you’ll lose viewers. HubSpot reports that 40 percent of viewers will abandon your site if it takes more than three seconds to load. Resist the temptation to overload your site with unoptimized images, large graphics, animated GIFS and lengthy videos.
Review and Revise
The information provided by Google Analytics and your own sales figures is meaningless unless you regularly review it and act on it. If your website hasn’t met your lead generation expectations, make some changes. Perhaps your “contact us” button wasn’t prominently located, or maybe your call to action was weak. Unlike paper brochures, websites can be easily modified and tweaked to ensure that they deliver the results you need to grow your business.
Making a goal-based website part of your marketing strategy can pay off when it comes to lead generation. When your site provides the information your customers need to make buying decisions, you’ll reap the benefits with increased sales numbers.