… a recipe for success.
(ok, that was corny, but you get the idea)
Let’s face it, You work SO freakin’ hard on your business. But figuring out what the heck to put on your website isn’t easy. Trust me, I’ve been there,
When I talk to clients, I tell them that their copy must convert. The visitor should know exactly what it is that you offer, why you are the best person to offer it, and how others can vouch for your expertise. It should be simple but it isn’t. Let me break it down for you in 5 simple ingredients for the perfect website.
Let’s cook you up a website. ::snort::
Ingredient #1: First, add the Offer.
I like to call this your specific promise. Your website must promise something. Aren’t you selling something? If you don’t have an offer think of your ideal client think of their problem. How are you going to solve it? What’s in it for them? How are they going to feel happier having worked with you?
You are in good company if you cannot answer this. Many entrepreneurs can say what they do, but they have trouble articulating who they do it for, how they do it differently, or why they do it.
For example: If you say “I coach women who want to get a fresh start in life“, that’s nice but it’s dull. It doesn’t drive anyone to become a client, does it? What exactly is a ‘fresh start’? However, if you rephrase this as “I coach middle-aged women who want to break out of their routine lives to live and travel on their terms by helping them to put themselves first“, then it’s much more clear (and interesting)
Ingredient #2: Then, throw in a Clean Design.
Your website should be pretty. Normally, I tell people not to focus on making their website pretty, but who doesn’t love a pretty website?
However, in addition to being pretty, it should also be simple to navigate. If someone wants to work with you, they should be able to quickly find the information that they need. You have just 10 seconds to make an impression. The internet is an enormous place, and you’ve got so much competing for your visitor’s time.
Don’t try to get all cutesy with the navigation. Put it at the top and keep it there. Don’t make people search for your menu. Gah! this is one of my pet peeves. Just Google “hamburger menu”. Do it. Hamburger menus belong on mobile only because screen space is limited.
Another faux-pas is walls and walls of text. Use headlines. Most people only read headlines. And don’t make any of these awful mistakes.
Basically, what I’m trying to say is: Try to make people think “Aha, I need her (or him), let me get in contact” by making it as easy to do so.
Ingredient #3: Add a heap of Relatability.
The best way to get people to relate to you is with a photo. It doesn’t have to be fancy. Just a photo.
Go … take a photo. For a professional website, quality matters to your web designer. The better the photo, the more we can do with it. However, use what you’ve got. You can take a better photo right now. Most smartphones are capable of high-quality photos. And Groupon is excellent for first-time headshots!
Go … tell a story. Do you have a story that will resonate with your ideal client? Tell it! Tell how your experience helps you do what you promise. Get as personal as appropriate, but remember to have fun!
Go … create a video. The best way for someone to get to know you is by creating a video. If this is appropriate for your business, don’t be afraid to incorporate video on your website.
Ingredient #4: Don’t forget a dash of Social Proof.
Can anyone vouch for your skills? If so, please include this. If you’ve worked with anyone (paid or otherwise), get a testimonial!
it’s a great way to convince others that you are the real deal. Also if you’ve been featured in anything (blog, organization, magazine, podcast, etc) include this as well.
Show off anything you can. You can either add your testimonials to a dedicated page, the homepage, or services page – or all three.
Ingredient #5: Finish it with a Clear Next Step.
One can also call this the ‘call to action‘ but I prefer a ‘clear next step‘. Basically, you’ll want to tell the visitor what to do next. They can only do ONE thing next. So what should it be?
For many businesses, the visitor should contact the business to inquire about the service. Other websites simply sell products.
Whatever your business, unless your visitor is taking action, you are NOT making money. So next steps matter.
Tell the visitor what you want them to do in plain English. Do not be bashful. This could mean the difference between a website that converts and one that doesn’t.
Rest for 30 days and analyze
You’ll know that your changes have worked by viewing your website analytics. Keep driving traffic to your website, keep creating good content, and you’ll start to see better results.