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When most people think about a new website, they think about the looks. They need to represent themselves. Their design has to look sleek. They think about their products and how they can showcase them. It’s their website, after all. It’s their baby. And it’s the portal to more business.
They compare their website to the ads they see on TV. Show how amazing your products are and hope for a few sales. This strategy usually results in a big disappointment.
The internet gave us the power of control. We can decide what we want to see. We mute the sound or used the bathroom during commercial breaks on TV. The internet works very differently from that. If your website feels like an ad, your customers will leave.
Your visitor is the one who is using your website. They will only stay if it’s useful to them. They have to feel their time on your website is well spent. We have to respect the time they’re giving us. Your website has to be about your customer and not about you.
I understand you have a website to grow your business. But for business to happen, you need their trust first. As you know from personal experience, that’s hard to come by. Especially on the internet.
Let’s say you’re a mechanic. You know there are other mechanics out there. Most of their services are very similar to yours. They change the oil, look at the brakes, things like that. Every mechanic does that but people still choose one mechanic over the other. Some people even travel long distances to get to their guy.
People do that because they trust “their” mechanic more than the others. Once they found someone they trust, they don’t care too much about proximity or even saving a few dollars. They have made the experience that their mechanic gets things done. He fixes whatever is wrong. He is fast, professional and friendly.
You see, most people don’t know about cars. It creates anxiety and fear. They don’t know if they can trust them. Let’s face it, they have a bad reputation. So once they find someone they can trust, they stay.
It’s the same with your website.
Let’s look at two important factors to combine your goals with your prospects to make it a win-win for both of you.
You know your own customers the best. You know how they think, what their interests are and what they believe is right or wrong. You might even know their fears and worries. How’s the economy doing? Or why do the Vikings keep on losing? It’s how they perceive the world around them. It’s what makes them tick.
When your customers come into your shop, you try to meet them on their level. You are talking their language. You are trying to emulate them hear what they have to say. You want to relate to them because they bring you their business.
Let’s translate that knowledge to your website. They still come to you because they have a problem. But during that conversation, nothing else matters. Your marketing, advertising, and promotion around town all culminates to this moment. It’s only your customer and you. They decide if you’re a good fit during this time.
You and your business don’t change just because you’re online. You’re still dealing with the same people. And those are the people you have to design your website for.
People like to do business with people they like. And they like people who understand them. Take your best customer and design your website only for them. Design it just for George, Henry, or Mary. It has to fit perfectly to them. When you describe your services, describe them the same way you would describe them to your customers. Overdoing it is better than sounding generic.
I know it sounds obvious. That’s the reason most people don’t do it. But that’s also the reason their websites usually don’t get the results they hoped for.
A lot of business put up websites just to be represented on the internet. They don’t treat it as an asset which existence needs to be justified through a proper ROI. Generating more leads is not a goal. It’s a hope. We put our website up and pray our clients will find us.
But that’s how none of our projects work, right? We set our goals and then define the actions steps to get there. The goal has to be very specific. Vague statements like the one above can be easily dismissed because they don’t create responsibility.
Of course, you have to measure your goals. If you don’t collect any data on how you’re doing, you can never prove if you reached any of your goals. Google Analytics is the most common one these days. You can set up goals and track them as well.
Websites are really just scaled conversations with your customers. If they don’t feel understood or don’t find what they need, they will end the conversation. It’s your job to make them understand and trust you.
If you can get the conversation right, it doesn’t even matter how you built your website. There are website builders like Wix or Sitepoint that can help you for building it yourself. Or, you have the option to get help from a pro. But to reach your goals, you have to make the conversation about your customer.
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