The proliferation of internet has given rise to literally thousands of websites. According to Netcraft January 2017 web survey, the number of websites have increased from 906,616,188 in January 2016 to 1.8 billion this year.
The number of websites exceeded the 1 billion mark for the first time in October 2014, after which it fell back to 900 million mainly because of the increase in smartphones and apps. The number of websites crossed the 1 billion mark again in March 2016 and this time, however, it did not fall back. According to the Verisign Domain Name Industry Brief, there are around 330 million domains that support 1.8 billion websites.
Interestingly, among the 1.8 billion, only a few dominate the internet and generate 50%of traffic. These include Amazon, Google, Facebook, YouTube, and Yahoo. Amazon makes $107 billion annually and $3392.94 per second. Given the current scenario, if you decide to publish your website, it is highly unlikely that it will get noticed unless you work on it. Your website is not only a medium to tell your customers about you, it is also your revenue-generating machine.
Here are some ways your website can help your start-up increase sales:
Keep Your Website Simple
The idea of a website is not just to drive traffic, but also convert the visitors into potential clients. The best way to do so is to keep your homepage simple. You don’t have to overwhelm the users. The fewer the offerings on your site, the more efficiently you will be able to cater to your visitors.
You can make your website enticing by adding videos to your landing pages. According to Mashable, videos increase conversion by 86 per cent; this is because the human brain is capable of processing visual information 60,000 times faster than text. Hence, incorporating videos for educating your visitors about your business is way more effective than doing it through text.
Responsive design is yet another important element of a website. Most people now access websites through their phones. A responsive website offers consistent experience to your visitors, whereas, an unresponsive website will discourage your visitors from staying longer.
Get Access to Email Addresses
Email marketing is one of the most effective ways of digital marketing with high return on investment as 77 per cent consumers prefer email marketing over other channels. However, you cannot conduct email marketing if you don’t have any email addresses. Forbes recommends offering your visitors something valuable such as free digital downloads to get their email addresses.
One way to do that is through a pop up at the end of your content. You can easily use plugins such as WP Subscribe Pro for this task. Another way to do so is by sliding a subscribe box once a visitor has scrolled around 70-80 per cent of the page.
Remember, you have to be subtle while asking for email addresses; so make sure that you never annoy your visitors or nag them. You can easily track your email campaigns with tools such as Salesmate that show you when your customer opens your email.
Add Customer Reviews
Most customers read reviews before making a purchase decision. As per research, 65 per cent of consumers are more likely to purchase a product if the website has customer reviews. Also, more than 50 reviews per product mean a 4.8 per cent increase in conversion rates. Moreover, reviews help you improve your on-site rankings because each new review adds to the unique content, which will increase your relevance, authority and ultimately your search visibility.
Customer reviews don’t mean only good reviews. You can let some bad reviews stay as well. A mix of bad and good reviews shows that the reviews on your site are genuine and you are not trying to hide anything from the visitors.
Focus on SEO
Google now processes 40,000 searches every second, which means 3.5 billion searches per day. If you want to benefit from this figure, then you need SEO. SEO means more traffic, which eventually means more sales.
The key behind great SEO is quality content. Make sure to write content that serves different segments. Apart from quality content, you also need the right keyword strategy. You can take advantage of tools such as Google’s Keyword Planner to find the most popular words related to your business. The right keywords should not just be included in the content, your URL should also have them as it makes it easier for potential customers to know what your product or service is about.
There’s so much to talk about when it comes to SEO that we have an entire section dedicated to SEO tips, tricks & articles. If you’re not sure where to get started, I suggest kicking things off with our quick & easy SEO checklist.
Provide Attractive Offers
When it comes to online shopping, customers can be very finicky and often end up abandoning their shopping carts; 36 per cent customers do so mainly because of high delivery cost. So, if you are an owner of a small business which is in its nascent stage, you can encourage your visitors to shop from your site by giving them free shipping.
When it comes to shipping, it is not only the cost that matters, but time as well. Customers would still go for another option, despite the free shipping, if the delivery is going to take long.
Moreover, exit offers can be very useful in converting customers. Just when your customer is about to close your website, you can pop up a discount or free shipping offer to make them reconsider their decision.
Whether you are a large e-commerce website or a just a small blog, downtime can have a drastic impact on your website. Google has a downtime of only 7 minutes while Facebook has a downtime of only 25 minutes.
According to a research conducted by Akamai technologies, 47 per cent of consumers become impatient if the website takes more than 2 seconds to load and 14 per cent will immediately switch to another website. Also, site loading time is one of the most important ranking factors in Google search results. Apart from that, downtime reduces customer satisfaction, which in turn reduces their chances of visiting your website again.
In this technological era, online stores and websites have overtaken brick and mortar stores. People make impressions about your company and products by your online presence. Your website can help you increase your sales considerably only if you utilize it in the right manner. For that, you need to look at your site as a source of revenue generation rather than just a source that disseminates information.