In the early days of the web, a consultant would have told you that an effective online business needs a simple webpage to succeed. That web page would most likely have used frames and static HTML to project your company to the world. Things have changed a lot since those days.
A Dynamic Website
If a potential customer clicks through to your website and it only contains a few static pages, chances are they will get bored and head elsewhere. The last thing any business wants is to lose a possible lead.
To keep web users engaged, companies have to build websites with interesting content that shows how you can solve a problem. Make sure your high performing website has interesting content that will drive users deeper into the site. As they learn more about your company, they are becoming more familiar with the quality of your company and will be more likely to make a purchase.
Don’t forget to include customer testimonials, examples of success, and an easy way for the customer to contact you.
A Social Presence
A few weeks ago, the shower drain at my home stopped draining. After a futile attempt to fix it myself (I am in finance, not plumbing after all), I pulled out my phone and searched for high rated plumbing companies within five miles of my home. Do you know how your company scores on Yelp? That was the single biggest factor in who got my business.
A few weeks ago I was scratching my head on where to head for date night. I wanted a fun restaurant that was not going to break the budget. I decided to do what any young professional would do, I Tweeted and asked my friends on Facebook
for suggestions. One local restaurant noticed my Tweet and suggested I head their way. I didn’t that evening, but I did make a point to stop in for lunch a few weeks later.
I am far from rare with stories like these. Your potential customers have access to more information than ever before, and making sure your business is easy to find, has a good reputation, and draws in new customers can make a big difference in your customer acquisition success.
A Goal for Your Online Activity
When you engage in any online activity for your business, it is important to have specific goals in mind. Work backward from those goals to make decisions on how to build your online presence. A company like Level 3 Communications will have a very different online presence than a restaurant or retail store.
Quick and Easy Checklist
With 2012 rapidly approaching, here are 4 simple things you can do to hit the ground running in the new year:
- Claim your page on Yelp and Google Places
- Check out your page speed and make sure it loads quickly
- Do a content audit to ensure you have enough customer testimonials and interactive content
- Make sure you are setup on location based networking (like Foursquare or Oink)
We are past the age of a simple website and have entered a time when potential customers will do research and quickly move on if they are not impressed. Make sure you take advantage of every opportunity to impress a potential customer and turn them into a loyal one.