The New Year is all about re-evaluating and that means it’s the perfect time to refresh your website. A lot can change in the space of 12 months so it’s a great opportunity to ensure you’re attracting and retaining the right kind of customers. January is an ideal time to review your website and how it’s performing so it’s in line with your business objectives. Here are our top tips to refresh your website so you can position yourself ahead of the competition.
Your first port of call has to be an audit. Think about your target market, how you attract new clients and encourage repeat or lapsed customers. Consider what clients and prospective clients visit your website for.
Review the content on your website to see what copy, images or keywords should be updated. Links should also be looked at to ensure none are broken and functionality must be tested across all browsers. Consider how you drive traffic to your site, generate leads and whether your website accurately reflects your business goals for 2017. This might also include updating case studies, asking clients for testimonials and creating an editorial calendar for blog post content.
If you need professional assistance with an audit, we can perform a free website audit to assess your performance, mobile-friendliness, SEO and security,
Once you’ve undertaken a review of your website, you need to take a look at the typical customer journey. Put yourself in the shoes of a prospective client and imagine what information you might be looking for.
Is your website easy to navigate from the landing page or will prospects need to hunt around for what they require?
They might click away if they’re time short. Ask colleagues and friends who are not familiar with your website to review the customer journey too. More often than not they’ll spot things which could really improve your website usability. Your website should always be refreshed with your target audience in mind. At the very least, they will want to know what your approach is, whether you have the necessary expertise and how knowledgeable your team is.
SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is fundamental to the success of your website. As search engines refer users to websites that have the most relevant information, content, performance and authority really are critical. Consider the text, titles and descriptions on your pages, the speed of your website and how easy it is to navigate.Authority is also a key factor – are you considered an authority in your field and does your website reflect this? As a specialist, you’re expected to reflect that level of expertise and, if your site has enough in-depth information, it can be considered an authority site.
Authority is also a key factor – are you considered an authority in your field and does your website reflect this? As a specialist, you’re expected to reflect that level of expertise and, if your website has enough in-depth information, it can be considered an authority site or at least have authority pages and these URLs are the ones that top the search engines results pages (SERPs).
One example is this page about cycle tyre sizes – Written by the former CTC’s technical officer, it was often remarked about as “being far too long” and “nobody’s going to read that” but then it was their top traffic page for years!
Many of you will have reviewed Google Analytics data on an ongoing basis. At this time of year, it’s important to understand how your website has performed over the last 12 months. This should include the number of visitors and dwell time plus how many pages have been visited, most popular pages and conversion rates. This information can help drive your content moving forward.
Using Analytics you can segment your visitors to see:
Look at what has changed over the past year, you’ll probably notice that mobile traffic is on the increase. This will give you insights into where you need to channel your efforts in order to stay customer-focused.
Before you embark on a website refresh, it’s essential you conduct a competitor review so you can identify your point of difference. Consider how each competitor is positioned, how easy their websites are to navigate and how up-to-date the content is. Evaluate what works and what doesn’t as well as noting specialisms and location. You can also get a feel for what they’re like through case studies, a blog and social media channels.
Again, if you were thinking of performing a website audit on your own site, see if you have time to audit thecompetition. A professional audit can take time, so consider outsourcing the task to your friendly local design agency…
Once you’ve reviewed your website, you’re ready to refresh it for the year ahead. If you have any design, digital or search requirements, feel free to contact Woking web agency Clever Marketing on 020 3146 4341. We are more than happy to do the heavy lifting and be your digital marketing department, providing expertise in SEO and PPC to increase your visibility and boost your traffic.
Many of us often wrongly assume that our customers fully understand the length and breadth of our service or product offering. It can then come as quite a shock when they say “Oh I didn’t know you did that.” And it can be particularly galling when they turn to one of your competitors for that provision.
So within the best marketing strategies, there should always be an area set aside for existing customers. The idea here is definitely not to turn customers off by continually bombarding them with sales offer after sales offer.
One thing many businesses have found over the last few years is that customer budgets have tightened and more scrutiny is given to the price of products and services.
We’ve seen a number of successful businesses responding to this change in the commercial landscape with a more flexible offering, one that appeals to different business budgets and cash flows.
They recognise that not everyone may want to purchase a product or service in its entirety – say with all its add-on features, bells and whistles. You’ve probably come across this in travel industry when you’re presented with options to add car hire or a hotel stay on to a flight purchase.
One example is the budget airline Easyjet who charge for a basic flight and then add on extra charges for additional bags, drinks etc.
By providing different purchasing options to a customer, you can gain a competitive edge on those rivals who are sticking to a ‘one size fits all’ range.
One anecdote we’ve heard is from our Digital Marketing Manager who previously worked in the IT department for the global brand of a multinational corporation. When their team “sized up” jobs they would do it by “t-shirt sizes” – Small, medium or large. The criteria for their sizes were:
So this might give you an idea of what you can offer to suit different customer budgets.
Whilst you don’t want to overwhelm customers with numerous configurations, by creating a handful of simple and clearly defined package options you can capture the interest from a broader range of customers – albeit with different budgets.
It is great when a marketing campaign generates a sizeable pot of new business leads and warm contacts. This achievement though presents the immediate challenge of converting that interest into sales.
And yet customer interest is notorious for waning, which is why it’s important to remember that one ‘touch-point’ alone with your company rarely persuades a potential customer to buy from you. It can often take several interactions to convert their interest into a sale.
Over the years we’ve helped many businesses, not only generate leads, but also convert them. Here are 3 key factors that often make the difference between success and failure.
For many products and services, the buying process is far from instant. The more expensive the purchase, the more attention a customer will allocate to it. For example, they may embark on information gathering, discussing a specification with a sales representative, seeking out recommendations and testing or trialling a sample of the product or service before they reach their final decision.
To reassure potential customers that your business is the one to buy from, it really helps to deliver a consistent, clear and pleasant experience at each stage of the buying journey. In particular, try and avoid the customer:
So keep in mind your brand consistency across the user journey.
Customers hate to feel they’re just a number to you and love it when you tailor messages to them. So take advantage of marketing personalisation technology for your printed or digital communications. Ensure your digital marketing can cope with the different environments your customers may be interacting with it (mobile, tablet, desktop etc). Identify any common stage(s) where customers stall in their decision to buy your products and services. Also consider communications, offers or sales team contact which can help move them on to the next phase.
When marketing and sales teams work closely together on a lead generation campaign, the results can be breathtaking. This means having sales personnel at the ready to respond to interest the minute a lead engages with your company’s marketing. Advances in marketing technology mean that online pop-ups, video, virtual presenters, dedicated emails or ‘click to dial’ phone numbers are easy to set up. These help to move potential customers into dialogue with a sales representative and enable businesses to respond quickly to interest the minute it arrives.
For this approach to work well, it’s essential to fully brief the sales team on the marketing promotion’s content and timings. There’s nothing worse than trying to enquire about a service and experiencing a lengthy delay, or a salesperson who is unfamiliar with the promotion you’ve seen.
If you’d like additional ideas about how to speed up the buying process and converting leads into sales, do get in touch with us at Clever Marketing.
Need to speak to us right now? Call us on 020 3146 4341.
Most businesses would like to think they’re easy to buy from. However, if left unchecked, evolving business processes or communications can risk confusing or putting the customer off altogether.
It is worth taking time out to double-check that your business continues to offer an easy purchasing process for its customers. On an annual basis you must re-evaluate whether the following points remain clear, concise and user-friendly, from your customers’ perspectives:
Also, consider whether the after sales support you offer encourages the customer to be pleased and reassured by their purchase? The more special they feel; the more likely they are to recommend you. Think of ways to use the goodwill after the purchase to subtly position add-ons or further products or services which complement their current purchase.
If you’d like more ideas on how to make it easy for customers to buy from you, please contact the Clever Marketing team.
With the arrival of the New Year, many businesses are looking ahead and planning how to make the next 12 months even bigger and better than the last. Whilst it is tempting to focus purely on new prospects, there is often much commercial benefit to be gained from your existing customers.
Certainly, throughout 2014 you will want to ensure those customers continue favouring your business offering over others and maintain their levels of expenditure with you. Ideally, you will also want them to consider other aspects of your service or product range and increase the range they buy.
The key to all this will be how good your customer experience is. This doesn’t just equate to the quality of your product or service, although that does have a major part to play. It also involves the pre- and post-sales interactions you deliver around your product/service. Each of these interactions needs to be positive and one your customers find comfortable, easy to understand and even enjoyable.
To help you improve the customer experience you deliver, try it out for yourself or employ a mystery shopper specialist to test and report back to you. Where possible you should aim to simplify any complex messages, ease the process of buying from you and ensure the after-sales experience encourages customers to want to buy more.
2014 will no doubt see people continuing to be busy and so the more you can make your customers’ lives easy and hassle-free, the more they’ll opt for your business offering over another’s. Clever Marketing has helped a number of firms identify gaps in their customer experience and have successfully tackled these to improve client loyalty, create greater awareness of the firms’ business offering and generate upselling opportunities.
If you’d like to learn more do get in touch with us on 020 3146 4341