Changing something on your website often sounds incredible. Moreover, expensive. That does not have to be that way. I take you through 4 quick tips for your website, which you can efficiently perform yourself. It is just so important that you do not develop a tunnel vision and occasionally dare to look at your website with a critical eye—small adjustments, with great results.
Before you start on these quick wins, it is important to consider whether and how they fit into your own marketing strategy. See your marketing strategy as the main course and these quick wins as side dishes. Of course, they have to fit in with the main course, so that the dishes can reinforce each other. If the side dishes do not fit your strategy, you can bring them more to your taste or leave them out.
As a marketer, once in a while, you also have to make a choice not to do something consciously. You do not have to try everything. So make sure that you get to work that you are (again) keen on who your target group is, with what purpose they visit the website, and what action they perform in the ideal situation. Do not just look at your main course, but at the whole table. Everything has to fit together to make sure that you notice the effect.
1. The homepage: make the right impression
The homepage is an important page to make the right impression on your website visitors. However, also the most difficult in my eyes. With strong images and few words, you need to be clear who you are and what you do. It is, therefore, also important that this page grows with the organization. Since you have looked at this page long enough and have perhaps developed a bit of a tunnel vision, it is time to call in the auxiliary troops.
At UsabilityHub you can easily create a test that is submitted to a group of random people. You have different options. For example, show your home page for five seconds to a group of testers. Then that group answers your questions about the home page. Alternatively, do a competitive analysis by showing a group of testers different home pages and see which page (hopefully yours) is the best. You can even do a navigation test to see how visitors navigate through your website and what you can still win here. The advantage of a website like this is that you can perform the test anonymously, so the testers do not have to know that you are from the organization.
Dare to use the feedback to make (small) adjustments to your website. Consider, for example, moving the menu, a different color tone in the background, or adjusting the text to clarify the purpose of the organization.
Use your common sense…
With such a test site it is good to keep in mind that you do not know the characteristics of the test group. Also, the testers are not consciously looking for your product. So keep on using your common sense when interpreting the results, but as a marketeer, you already knew that!
Of course, there are more possibilities to investigate which impression your home page makes. For example, plan a brainstorm with colleagues who do not work in marketing or sales. What do they think of the homepage? Perhaps they are following a competitor that is doing very well. What can the organization learn from this?
In my view, it is in any case important that the homepage makes the following clear or contains:
- Who you are and what the organization does
- Sufficient content: text, video, or image to make the visitor curious and adequate call-to-actions to click through to deeper pages
- The menu must be visible, with clear headlines, so that a visitor can easily navigate
- The contact details must be visible
Perhaps the biggest puzzle of your website: call-to-actions. For me, call-to-actions are all moments on the website where a visitor can leave his data. So from newsletter registration to leaving your e-mail to download content to a contact form. When did you last look at them? Here too, substantiation is important. First look, for example in A,nalytics, which call-to-actions work and which do not work. Which forms are completed? Which is not? What is the difference? Is it the text? The place?
The call-to-actions with a low response require some extra love. Although I also tend to look at the text first, I recommend that you first think carefully about the location of the call-to-action in the customer journey. I mean the following with this. If you put a call-to-action on a blog, first think carefully about when the visitor reads this blog. Is it likely that it is the first page that he or she sees? How logical is it to make an appointment directly? Registering for blog updates is a smaller step that fits better with the customer journey. For example, the Content Marketing Institute places the following call-to-action under a blog.
Look at all your call-to-action in this way. Also look at those on older pages, because with new insights you also want to optimize the older call-to-actions. Adjust the text or form as necessary. Does the text describe what the benefit is for the customer if he or she leaves an e-mail address? Alternatively, can you, for example, ask a visitor for his e-mail address only and not ask for the name? That makes it a bit more accessible. There is certainly no right way in this. It is experimenting, going down and trying again.
Do you use stock photos? Although there are excellent websites for finding stock photos, I am not a big fan myself. My own images work best in my eyes. You show more of the organization, and that makes it more personal. So see if you can replace stock photos with your own picture. It does not have to be complicated. I sometimes walk around with a handheld camera and shoot some photos while my colleagues are at work. There are now enough photo editing programs, which are also great for laymen, like Picasa.
Did you replace the photos or do not you see this? Then there is more to be gained! Pictures are often forgotten in the optimization process. Check whether your images are the right size because too large images slow down the loading time of your website. Do all of your pictures have a good alt text? I confess that I sometimes leave points there. The most important tip is to use the keyword that you use for the page in the alt text.
The organization’s blog is growing, maybe you have added new pages to the website or created other interesting content, but have you also linked that content to other pages? Internal links are essential for the user-friendliness of your website, but also affect the ranking of that page by Google. So walk through your new blog articles and see if you can refer to the original content on older pages and vice versa.
In short, dare to experiment on your website. Especially with the smaller things. You do not have to change your entire website to achieve something positive. I am sure if you take an afternoon to go through the above points, your website can become even more user-friendly. Will you let me know the results? Alternatively, do you have more quick wins for your website yourself?