Saturday, 8 October 2011
Test Your Website!!!!!!
Your website is the "storefront" of your business (even if you have a literal storefront, too). Your website needs to attract customers and keep them coming back for more. So pull up your website and ask yourself a few questions:
Where do your eyes go first?
You only have a few seconds to capture the attention of your audience...make sure they're seeing something important. Is it pictures, that logo you spent too much money on having it created? Is it weird remarks, shouting pay-offs, blinding colours (really! pastells????) Boobs, babes, beer, sex, money and all the scum of the earth you can think of won't work (for a long time) unless you test. I'd suggest heat maps and eye tracking. Most valuable I think are communities where any which visitor rates your site on usability, branding, logos, content etc etc. meanwhile contributing to the community. If you don't contribute because you;re a self centrered asshole you get no rating whatsoever....Made that mistake..feed back was very very clear..
Can you tell what the website is about?
Again, you only have a few seconds to communicate your unique value, so be clear and compelling.
"we're sooo unique, we even get unique visitors, we give you the best deals and are experts in our field. We do basically everything you want and know who you are...self complacency in (on?) websites is rapidly multiplying....
Is important information above the fold?
Make sure your opt-in forms and Unique Selling Proposition are available without scrolling down.
Scrolling is the armageddon of usability. Screen movements are always faster than your eyes can follow. trying to keep track of where you were on the screen, which element took your interest, and, moreover, what was the link again? The horror, the horror.
Are the benefits highlighted?
Your visitors want to quickly learn "what's in it for them." Spell out the benefits clearly on the homepage. What's in it for me, the self complacent visitor, transactional buyer, full of himself egocentric, bargain shopping nutcase that is behind his Apple 24/7
Is there a clear call to action?
If they like what they see, prospects need to know what to do next. It can be to buy now, start a free trial, or simply download a free report. In a way you're speaking to the visitor. In awkwardness this will very soon evolve to nurse Wretched's 'are we doing fine' exclamations that drive patients up the wall...or maybe it's just a figment of my imagination that some call-to-action tags address me as if I would be a complete pea-brained moron. "Buy now!" my arse!!! I'll buy whenever I want to...it's me me me....errr
Are the colors and font distracting?
For what is extracting.....Jarring colors, quick animation, and gaudy fonts can really be distracting. And if your visitors are distracted, they'll click away. The average attention span of current youths is one tenth of a second. Before they know it, they clicked away carrying them at light speed over the waste lands of their imcompetency.. Use matching colors....(really, pastells????) or don't.
Do you feel personally connected?
Consumers want to buy from people, not machines. Connect with your prospects by being honest, straightforward, and using a conversational style. Ahuh! Honesty (is such a lonely word) and commerce is the same as a pygmee on the north pole...
Are there links to social media?
And the powers-that-be decided to have a FaceBook page. We want a facebook profile! The powers-that-be had some poor bastard editor, online marketer put 'something' online. Lo and behold, nothing happens.... So why, asked the powers-that-be, isn't it working. Make it work boy! We don't have the time to listen to your whining about strategy and planning. If you don't we'll find another poor bastard to bow to us. Since the editor / marketer was a smart lad, he left and left the powers-that-be alone in their swamp of complacency, ignorance and do without thinking commerciality...
Many people want to do a little more research before buying. Linking to social media sites gives your potential customers another glimpse into your company (and perhaps a few testimonials from other people)