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Your Website Looks Good, But Does It Sell?

October 21, 2009

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Written by Meredith Oliver

This post is an excerpt from Meredith’s new book “Click Power- Become the Master of Your Domain.” If you like what you read here, you will love the new book!

I do a lot of Website evaluations. Most of the sites I review score very poorly on “call to action” language and graphics.

Web sites can be active sales vehicles if they ASK visitors to engage. Your site should compel visitors to call, chat, click or come-by; to take the next step in the sales process with you!

What action you want visitors to take depends on the type of Web site. If the site is an ecommerce site, then certainly what you want to do is compel online sales. Even if your business is not a traditional retail business, you should still think like a retail business when it comes to your Web site. Instead of merchandising your site with product for sale online, you should merchandise your site with action language to encourage visitors to call you, visit an onsite location or register online for more information.

One of the biggest mistakes non-retail businesses make is failing to treat their Web site like a store.

A Web site doesn’t have to be a passive brochure that just costs money to develop and maintain. It can be an ACTIVE sales vehicle that generates leads, which properly managed, can develop into offline sales. The number of online sales, calls and/or Internet leads you receive will be in direct correlation to the strength of your call to action language and graphics.

Tips to improve your Web site’s call to action:

> Set aside room on every page for a promotional area that can be updated frequently. In this area promote a featured online or offline product, a price discount, incentive or contest/sweepstake.

> Use graphic buttons/banners with action language to grab visitors’ attention such as “Learn More,” “Sign Up,” “Start Here” and “Get It Now.”

> Include a short email sign-up form on every page.

> Offer visitors a toll-free number to call for more information and post it in the same place on every page in a highly visible location.

> Offer Live Chat or Click-to-Call technology on the site to encourage visitors to interact instantly while they are still on your site.

> Add text links in the copy on every page that link to your online store and/or the Contact Us page. Use sales language and invite visitors to buy or register. Ask and you shall receive!

> Offer an incentive or discount for Web visitors in exchange for a purchase or registration.

> Keep your Contact Us form short! Limit the required fields to what is absolutely necessary.

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