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Monday, 8 August 2011

Build It And They Will Come - WRONG !!

If you have a website the chances are it's not making you much money. Because statistically, some 90% of businesses' websites DON'T make a penny or get people to contact the business. Truth is, making your website pay its way is not quite as simple as your website designer might have led you to believe.


Here's why: in the same way you can't build a profitable and solid business just by printing a glossy brochure and waiting for it to magically pull in the business, you can't simply throw a few "brochure" web-pages onto the Internet and score an immediate success.

And if you’ve been to a typical website design firm for your site, that's what you might have: an online-brochure which has virtually zero marketing effect. Most website designers are basically a new breed of graphic designer and they are NOT marketing experts. That’s why most websites don’t make any money.

The good news is, making your website profitable can be achieved fast, as long as you stick to some simple but very powerful fundamentals. And you can start right now.
And it all starts with your home page, because that’s the first thing people see when they hit your website.

Here are 3 tips to help you maximise the results you get from every visitor to your home page:

1. Ensure your Home Page passes the 8-second test.

Research shows that you have just 8 seconds to grab your website visitors' interest. They don't call it “web-surfing” for nothing: if you don't grab your visitor’s attention and break this pattern of behaviour, then they will hit your site, stay for a few seconds... and then they're gone. Usually forever.
So when they do hit your home-page, you need to present them with a clear and pressing reason to stay. And that means a headline. Don't let your website designer or your graphic designer sell you on the idea of logos, pretty pictures and whitespace ; that's just a "brochure website". Trust me, they don’t work. No one cares about your logo, the picture of the anonymous businessman in a suit at the top of the page, or empty space devoid of any meaning.
A headline is text, usually black, bold, and big which gives your visitor a big, exciting and compelling promise that if he or she continues reading, you're going to give them some significant reward for doing so. In other words, you’re going to have one of the few websites that keeps people for more than 8 seconds.
So think of a great headline for your home page, one which really sums up the "big promise" your business makes and encapsulates the overriding reason why people would want to do business with you and not your competitors.

2. Structure your web page copy according to the AIDA formula.

Follow this classic rule and you can’t go too far wrong. Your home page should follow on from your headline and tell your "story". It's got to be interesting enough to keep them riveted to the page long enough to get them over that 8-second "hump".
AIDA stands for Attention, Interest, Desire, Action, and all of your copy, whether it’s a letter, brochure, email, or your home page should follow this simple formula:
  • You get their Attention with a strong, compelling headline offering them a clear benefit for reading further.
     
  • Then you get their Interest with strong opening paragraphs which spell out the problems they face and the benefits your product or service offers.
     
  • You then fan the flames of their Desire by ‘twisting the knife’ and really showing them how you can ease the pain and make their lives better.
     
  • Finally, you get them to take Action on your offer with a strong call to action. On your home page, that will normally involve people giving you their name and email address in exchange for a Free report or video etc. 
    Every single page on your website should have a single purpose to justify its existence, and should therefore follow the AIDA formula.
     
It seems too simple and too good to be true – but it's used by the greatest copywriters and marketers, simply because it plugs into our natural human psychology, and it WORKS.

3. Use the lead generation model.
Too many business owners look at the Internet as nothing more than a virtual shopping mall. But we've already seen how your average visitors to your website are gone again within just 8 seconds.
Do you really think you can persuade your visitors to become a paying customer in 8 seconds? Most of the time, it just doesn’t work.

The trick is to switch from a sales model to a lead generation model. When someone hits your site, your sole intention should be to get them to give you their name and an email address.
Then... once you've got their email address you can start emailing them with a targeted, relationship-building and, ultimately, money-making sequence of personalised, friendly, and informative emails.
So there you have it: 3 very simple changes you can make to your home page right now to boost your website profits.

If you have any questions about how any of this can be put into action, call me on 01243 573615 or email me at neilhwilliams@hwmarketing.co.uk


HW Marketing UK are the Affordable Website Design Company of choice for Small or Startup Businesses in the area. Easily understandable pricing packages start at £250. The Company was established in 2009 by Neil Holley-Williams who worked for 25 years as a Freelance Consultant for IBM, Skandia Life, Invesco Perpetual and Carnival UK.

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