~ 5 Easy Ways to Improve Sales by Improving Visitor Experience ~

by Juli Settlemire, Business Manager

customers wanted signI bought fancy birdseed as a special springtime treat for my feathered friends. I filled my feeder with a festive mix of seeds, corn and tiny round pellets (maybe that was corn). And then I stood back and waited for the thankful birds to devour my springtime offering. And I waited.

No birds. Not. A. One.

“But it’s food,” I yelled. “It’s free food!”

Not even the squirrels visited my feeder.

“Squirrels! Squirrels will eat anything,” I lamented to my husband. “Apparently not,” he replied.

Just like a business trying to attract visitors to their website, my bird food debacle mirrored a classic marketing mistake – I had filled my bird feeder with things that I thought had value, NOT what my visitors (birds) wanted.

So step back this spring and look at your website from your customer’s perspective.

What does a typical website visitor want from your site?

1) They want to know WHAT you do
Typically, this information is found on the Home page, on the first page a visitor sees on your site – because it’s that important. Don’t make them guess! In simple terms, without industry jargon, tell visitors what you do, what products or services you offer and include a few relevant photos. Most importantly, tell them how they would benefit from what you offer.

2) They want to know WHO you are
Just about every site has an About Us page for a reason. People want to do business with other people, so be sure your about page tells visitors your name and a little about you and your staff. Help visitors make connections; also, make it easier for them to contact you by adding email links and please, PLEASE have contact information, including the telephone number, easily accessible (maybe even on every page).

3) They want to know WHERE you are
This is vital for brick-and-mortar stores. Just because you manage to get to work doesn’t mean customers know where you are. Include your street address; include a Google maps link; include a photo of the customer entrance of your building; and include your telephone number just in case they have no sense of direction or they want to talk to a human being!

4) They want to know WHEN you are open
Do you have weekend or evening hours? Are you open on holidays? 24/7? Maybe it wasn’t important before gas was over $3.50 per gallon, but nowadays customers need to know before driving to your store.

5) They want relevant/current content
Refresh and update your site on a routine basis. This is particularly important for seasonal businesses or retailers — no one wants to read about snow shovel specials in April.

Lastly, review your visitor statistics. Check your Google analytics to see what pages are popular with your visitors, how long they stay on your site, and make updates accordingly. Create more content that’s like the popular stuff, and fix up the less popular pages to attract more visitors to them.

This list may seem simple, obvious even, but improving your visitor’s experience can really help your bottom line.

As for my birdfeeder, I switched to black oil sunflower seeds — can’t keep the thing filled.