A professional website is a no-brainer for any company. Managed service providers are challenged with crafting digital destinations that not only look the part, but drive home conversions too. Your website must do its job of converting traffic into phone calls, email requests for additional information, and eventually sales. In a perfect world, it’s one of the most dependable marketing tools in your arsenal.
If you’re not satisfied with your conversion numbers then a little conversion rate optimization (CRO) is definitely in order. From design to search engine optimization (SEO), the following sections outline how MSPs can build a website that turns traffic into more than just fruitless visits.
- Make Your Web Design Responsive
Like countless business owners I chose to run my website on the user-friendly and highly flexible WordPress platform. Mentally exhausted after what seemed like an eternity, I settled on a theme that was simple and professional, as opposed to one that was simple, professional, and responsive. My wife may have called me hard-headed a time or two. I couldn’t help but hear her voice in my head when visitors started to reach out with complaints of difficult navigation when viewing certain pages from their mobile devices.
According to comScore, mobile Internet usage ballooned a whopping a 1721 and 394 percent across tablets and smartphones respectively from 2010 to 2014. Mobile web browsing has become the norm in a digital world where consumers are using their gadgets to download apps, listen to music, shop online and so much more. A responsive design will ensure that your site adapts to any screen, be it on a desktop, smartphone, or tablet. I finally made the move a responsive template because a few customers brought the issue to my attention. Still, it pains me to think of how many sales I may have lost by being hard-headed and ignoring what I knew was right in the first place.
2. Marry SEO and CRO
No digital marketing strategy is complete without a strong SEO component. Good search engine optimization will enable you to achieve natural rankings, improve visibility, and reel in traffic from widely used search engines such as Google and Bing. Sounds promising, but it doesn’t take a genius to know that those efforts are futile if your visitors don’t eventually become clients. For this reason, SEO should be complemented by a CRO strategy designed to convert as much as of that traffic as possible.
Without an enhanced focus on conversions, your bounce rates will probably be a lot higher than your conversion rates as visitors leave just as fast as they came from their preferred search engine. The comforting thing is that SEO and CRO can work in harmony toward the same goals. Examples include:
- A singular focus that concentrates on one topic, product, or service per page will increase your site’s quality in the eyes of search engines and visitors alike. The result is often better search engine rankings and more conversions.
- Relevant content shows Google that your website is valuable to search engine users. It lets your visitors know they’re in the right place.
- Relevant keywords are used to optimize a web page for maximum conversions. These are the same keywords users enter into their favorite search engine, which may lead them right to you.
- Eliminating “Flashy” components and complex graphical presentations will make it easier for both search engine spiders and visitors to navigate your website. Avoid them, and better SEO and CRO may be your reward.
3. Aim to Convert Above the Fold
Mobile devices have simplified the dreaded process of scrolling by allowing you to easily swipe your way through content. That doesn’t mean you should force visitors to put this theory to the test. In fact, your calls to action are best kept above the fold, meaning they are visible and accessible on first glance – no scrolling necessary. Furthermore, make sure the buttons and links that accompany your CTAs are mobile-friendly in terms of their size and positioning so clunky fingers don’t become conversion killers!
4. Publish Great Content
When it comes to web design, content is both the traffic driver and the conversion generator. It’s what makes a user decide to subscribe to a newsletter, download an ebook, or invest in managed services. But let’s not move too fast now. Content doesn’t promise instant results. However, good content can help visitors become intimately familiar with your brand, products or services over time. Whether it’s an engaging video clip that explains how your software works or just solid website copy, valuable content is the ultimate key to website conversions.
5. Prioritize the User Experience
Your website can be optimized for first page ranking in Google. Armed with visuals that make your visitors say “WOW!” If it doesn’t deliver a great user experience, you can forget about conversions. In order to improve that experience, you need to know some basic facts about the user, such as:
- Who is the user?
- How did the user get to your website?
- What does the user want from you and your website?
- Now that they’re there, what does the user expect next?
A great user experience begins by understanding the needs, preferences, and behaviors of your visitors. Answer these questions and you’ll be equipped with the ammunition needed to design your website accordingly.
6. Split and Test!
Launching a marketing campaign without testing it is like loading a gun and firing blindly into the dark. It’s virtually impossible to know whether your marketing program is on the road to greatness or destined for failure. A little A/B testing is just what you need in order to know where you stand. Also known as split testing, A/B testing allows you to compare the performance of two versions of your website, a single page, or individual site components. For instance, one group of visitors might see a registration page with a virtual message from the CEO, while another group sees the page without it.
A/B testing works because it gives you an opportunity to view the results of a given experiment and make the best possible choice based on measurable evidence. Keep it simple with two test groups, and you’ll know exactly what tactics are driving the highest percentage of conversions. Split testing may sound complex, but with the right tools and a little practice, it’s relatively easy . 5 Second Test, Google Analytics Experiments, and Unbounce are a few of several tools that illustrate how simple, affordable and effective A/B testing can be.
There are 101 plus web design nuances that can help improve your conversion optimization rates – from basic to advanced. You don’t have to stop being an IT service expert and become a full time webmaster to see real gains from your online marketing efforts. Just making a few basic adjustments and monitoring them consistently can help you attract growing numbers of qualified prospects to your IT service business.