Is Your Website Confusing Your Potential Customers?

confusing websitesYour website is your business' online home. It's the place for your customers to go and learn about what a great company you have, the fantastic products you offer and the exceptional service you provide. They can enjoy getting to know what you do and what sets you apart from the competition.  As a business owner, you should be passionate about how you decorate this home, making sure it's filled with all of the things that set your business apart.

Lately, though, you feel that your website is “broken," this is a common complaint I hear from clients. Somehow, despite their best efforts their online home is not generating leads, your traffic is low or not attracting your target buyer, and your conversion rate stinks. So what's happening? 

For the purpose of explanation, I'll break down websites into two categories that may confuse your potential customer - content overloaded and content bare.

A content overloaded website is an overwhelming experience. Your customer hits your site and has no idea what to do. All they see is words, words, words and more words. That seems like a whole lot of reading to do before they can even understand what your product is. Who has time for that? Not your buyer, they are shopping around for a company that can solve their problem in a sentence or less. They want to make their way to the products and services page and determine if you can solve their problem without having to rifle through a book's worth of content. And it's extra points if you can educate them along the way. They don't want to read War and Peace on your website, they want the Reader's Digest version or they are going to move along to another website before they even get to the point of your business.

You then have the other end of the confusing website spectrum, the content bare site. Website simplicity is a beautiful thing when it's well executed. Oversimplified, however, is a nightmare for your conversion rate. Your customer gets to your website and your lack of calls to action, a services page, or meaningful content make it difficult to even begin to understand your business. While it may be easy on the eye, you've cut down the site to the bare minimum and now you are no longer telling your story. There is no clear product or service and thus, when your customer gets to your website nothing happens. They don't reach out to you, fill out a request, or do much more than look at your homepage. If you don't give them a reason to stay on your site or make it clear why they are there, they'll move along to a site that does. And unfortunately, that site will be your competitor's website.

Now what are you supposed to do? Are you doomed? No, not at all! Like other business owners, you are so closely attached to your website that sometimes having someone on the outside try to navigate your website and give you some honest feedback. Whether this is a peer, coworker, or agency getting another set of eyes (and mouse clicks) on your site will help understand how your prospects are navigating your site and what type of experience they are having. At the end of the day, the most important part of this process is putting yourself in your users' shoes, reaching that target buyer and welcoming them to your business's online home and make them want to kick off their shoes and stay a while.

How To Plan A Website That Works

Photo Credit: Jon Wiley via Compfight cc

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