Ten Elements Your Website NEEDS to Close Deals and Make You Money
There are 10 valuable elements your website needs right now to look more professional and convert visitors into customers.
- Top menu
Place a clear logo in the upper left corner of your navigation bar with basic navigational buttons. Also include a primary call-to-action button in the upper right corner of your website in the navigation bar.
It has been researched and reported by HotJar.com that the upper right corner of your navigation bar is highly clicked over other locations when placing your CTA.
And as far buttons, in the main navigation bar, keep it to 3-5 total buttons. Too many options can contend with where you want the viewer to go and paralyze them or lead them astray. The buttons at the top should be clear, set you apart, and drive conversions.
For example: For a dentist’s office, you would see a logo, hero photo of “white coat caring for a patient” and a way to schedule an appointment. If they don’t find that right away, they may quickly move onto another site that is better organized.
Don’t worry about fitting everything you want to include into the main navigation. The additional items can be added to the footer menu. Think instead about what your customer needs to be able to find within 5 seconds.
You want to make sure that the mobile navigation “hamburger” menu (box with 3 horizontal lines) is formatted correctly too, and is easy to click with a push of a finger.
- Hero shot
A Hero shot is the one photograph or background video that highlights your product or service and your happy customers. You want this photo or slow-motion video to be as clear and vibrant as possible because it “speaks 1,000 words” in a short attention span world, and can communicate ideas faster than reading words or watching a video.
Hiring a professional to minimize variable and emphasis features is recommended. This one photo can make or break your viewer’s experience.
If the photograph is good, it goes a long way to your viewer’s perception of what they think of your company.
Your headline should be one of the major key elements in the hierarchy of content communication. Your headline should NOT be cute, or vague, or ambiguous. It should state what you do, the problem you solve, or the people you serve.
According to an article on the website DigitalDoughnut.com, on average, 8 out of 10 people will read headline copy, but only 2 out of 10 will read the rest.
This headline should be the result of your brand script.
In 3 seconds a new viewer should be able to understand what you do or who you serve just from the hero photo and headline. If it takes more than 3 seconds, refine, hone, and test on a variety of people until it is simplified enough.
Businesses who are location-based should also include their address or city in the headline.
When a new user can tell you what you do accurately after only a few seconds of being on your website, you’ll know you’ve honed it well.
Having a subheadline is helpful to add empathy to your headline or hit home why they should choose you. This font should be smaller, the same color, and below the headline.
Here are some examples:
- We Are Denver’s Plumbing Experts
- See why we have been rated 5 stars on Google three years in a row!
- Nacho’ Ordinary Mexican Food
- See our zesty yet refreshing Yelp reviews and why people keep coming back for more!
- Wichita’s #1 Realtor®
- Find your forever dream home at the right price today.
47% of websites have a clear call-to-action button that takes users 3 seconds or less to see.
The CTA needs to be highlighted over and over on your landing page. Place it on the navigation bar, below your subheadline on your hero shot, and down the page a handful of other times.
Making CTAs look like buttons created a 45% boost in clicks for CreateDebate.
Emails with a single call-to-action increased clicks 371% and sales 1617%. (WordStream)
Adding CTAs to your Facebook page can increase the click-through rate by 285%. (AdRoll)
Sometimes the CTA is “Book a Discovery Call” or “Buy Now” or “Take our Assessment.” The CTA is really up to you but should be in a bold highlight color that is easy to find with a quick scroll of the page.
When we think about the hierarchy of content on your landing page, we want to make sure we have a broad overview near the top and more rich details near the bottom. Don’t get the viewer stuck in the weeds and confused too early.
Start broad and then the farther they go into your site the more you can serve them your knowledge and understanding of their issues you are hoping to help them with.
Before working on your site, consider a first-time viewer of your site. Jot down your flow of information, and then make sure that it makes sense to a first time visitor. Keep your language easy to read and accessible to sixth-grader reading level.
Use your words sparingly and use them deliberately. Most websites have too many words and congest the flow of information for a website. There isn’t a word count that I recommend for your front page. Just be mindful of the ratio between images, illustrations, videos, white space, and words.
Don’t use insider language and nomenclature or acronyms that are code to the viewer. Don’t make them work any harder than they have to to understand what you are trying to say.
- Additional images
In addition to your hero, choose a handful of additional images to supplement and balance your narrative information on the site. Be sure to reference your brand photos defined in step one to ensure all photos are cohesive in look and feel. Use photos of your target demographic here, happy customers, or additional images of your product or service. Like your words, keep them clear, and use them deliberately.
When choosing your additional images, consider dynamic diversity. Yes, that includes race, age, and gender. It also includes diversity in the way you tell a story.
Capture wide shots, mid shots, close up and ultra close-ups. Or highlight specific features or details of your product. Show life without this, using this, and after this product or service. Consider pattern and color in picking your additional images and how to incorporate them into the flow and design of your site.
Analyze big company websites, like Apple and Microsoft. See how they feature their products using photography and additional images.
- Lead magnets
A lead magnet is a free piece of highly valuable content in exchange for someone’s email address. Whether it be a PDF, webinar, coupon, or exclusive video, this lead magnet is designed to provide incredible value to your visitors. It should also provide continuous value and buying opportunities from you via email all while securing leads by continuing to be published on your website or a landing page in perpetuity.
This is a test drive to your brand. Will they like, know, and trust you after having access to your lead magnet? If not, it isn’t valuable enough. If so, you can create a tribe that will certainly buy from you down the road, as you continue to deliver value to them over time.
Your lead magnet should be “advertised” or featured prominently on your landing page with a place for them to type in their email address. Have a graphic of the “cover” of your freebie and place it next to a short description and email address fill-in form.
This form should be connected to your CRM, and automatically send a private link to your freebie after they fill out your form.
Your customers expect value, so make sure your button says “download now” or “gain access” or “view now” rather than “submit,” “subscribe” or “sign up” something more active and less passive. Also, make sure this button is a vibrant color so it catches their attention.
Having a strong lead magnet, or many lead magnets, is that it collects email addresses of your prospects. You can add them to your email list and continue to reach out to them with high value content eventually turning them into a paying customer.
An email database is yours. You own it and it is specific to your company. This list of people have reached out to you in one way or another and found value in what your brand brings to their possible issues. This is something that is way more valuable than social media followers, where you don’t own them. If the algorithm changes, you have lost contact with them. You might have noticed this over the past few years with Facebook.
Only a small percentage of people that follow your business page actually see your posts in their feed. And if you boost a post, which costs money, your reach goes up exponentially, but it is a pay-to-play model, where sending emails can be much more effective and economical.
If you are getting traffic to your site, but not many people are requesting access to your lead magnet, there are a number of changes you can make. You could:
- Change the “submit” button color, or
- Swap out a new graphic, or
- Experiment with the location within the flow of your content.
Test different elements until your signup rate goes up. Ensure you pair any changes with the promotion of your site or product to get adequate visitors to test the success of any changes.
Next steps: make it crystal clear
Next, on your landing page should be a simple process that clearly defines the next steps in working with you.
As Donald Miller of Storybrand says, “If you confuse, you lose.”
If people don’t know the next steps, there is a much higher chance that they won’t take them. So, spelling it out, which might seem obvious to you, can help guide your viewer into becoming a paying customer.
Here are a few examples of a simple process:
- Apply Online > Get Approved > Buy Your Dream Home
- Book a Discovery Call > Receive a Proposal > We Build Your Website
- Book appointment > We Fix your Dishwasher > You can reclaim your kitchen
- List your ideal customers (so people know you’re talking to THEM)
List out your ideal customers. Name them here. Let your viewer’s know that this is for them, or that you aren’t the right fit for them. Doing this can really funnel the right people to you, and save you (and them) heartache in the long run.
Tell your viewers who you serve is the first step in quality service! So spell it out. Define your different target or ideal customers and state it in this section.
There is a saying, “If you aim at nothing, you’ll hit it every time.” Spell out your target you are hoping to hit, so to speak.
Some examples of audiences:
Small business owners, pickup truck owners, first-time homeowners, kids 4-6th grade, dog owners, kindle owners, etc.
- Trust builders: show the social proof
Solidify visitors’ trust by including social proof and testimonials. Using customer testimonials, customer logos, and case studies can all help tighten the bond between them and your brand.
Social proof is about taking your company’s social circle and letting them speak for you, about you, to people like them. Adding this credibility to your brand is so valuable to growing trust with your potential customers.
According to Spiegel Research Center, about 95% of customers read reviews before making a purchase so get your fans to create noise for you!
It is one thing to say you are Tulsa’s #1 Honda Dealer, but it takes a mom with three kids that loves the reliability and safety of her Odyssey minivan. This shows people just like her why they will love their new car too!
You can NOT have too many testimonials. You don’t have to post them all at the same time. You can rotate them around between your eblasts, social media and website.
How would you feel if you scrolled down the page of the dealer’s Odyssey landing page and there were literally 500 positive reviews of this van? It kind of sells itself at this point. If you can get a photo of that person smiling, even better! It adds validity to your case, and having 500 smiles staring back at you instills that “I can be one of these people easily too.”
The Edelman Trust Barometer reports that over 60% of the 32,000 people surveyed trusted experts and peers over other sources, which tells us that getting our happy customers to talk to their friends, family, and colleagues about us is going to bring the warmest leads.
The footer of your landing page should be the same on every page of your website, unless there is a good reason for customizing it so your viewer can get comfortable with getting around your site easily. Keep it tidy, but the amount of information here can be extensive to help people access more in-depth content they might be seeking.
Include navigation links to:
- Company and staff information
- Legal notices
- Social media links
- Your contact information
- Media and press links (like your logo and brand kits)
- Other miscellaneous information
39% of people will stop engaging with a website if images won’t load or take too long to load.
Google: “Page Speed Insights” and go to the website from Google. There you can put in your website address and get a report back on how fast or slow your site is on both desktop and mobile.
Finding a person skilled in this particular trade of optimizing site speed is valuable to the ranking on Google and will likely lower your bounce rate, which is how many people “bounce” off your site right away, because of factors such as slow loading times.
You can find freelancers on platforms like Upwork or Fiverr. Look for freelancers who offer packages so you can streamline your search and get to work faster. You’ll give them full access to your website and website hosting server to do so. And this should be a one-and-done service unless you go through a major site redesign, then you might want to have it re-optimized again.
38% of people will stop engaging with a website if the content or layout is unattractive.
You need to make sure your website is responsive, which means that the design, layout, and flow of content translates between desktop, laptop, tablet, and mobile browsing devices.
In the web design world there is a way of designing called User Experience (UX) and it is all about how a new user interacts with your website (or app). They think about flow of information, accessibility to all abilities, font sizes, contrast, and overall aesthetics of the site as well as the overall functionality.
They also consider how a website translates between desktop and mobile devices and creates a seamless experience between the two so no matter what the user or what their device, you have the same experience.
Make sure you check all of these different browsing options and optimize the settings (and sometimes code) to get the best results.
If you don’t know this by now, websites are a never-ending ongoing process. You can always make them better as you go along, and add more value to your reader. Keep evolving it and making it the best experience for your viewers.
You have to celebrate your new site, even if it isn’t “perfect” but it is launched! It is WAY better than anything you have ever had before, and it is a great platform to work from. Hooray!