As a small business owner, you want to earn more sales from your website.
It’s part of the territory for many of us who need to make sure our marketing investments are getting a return.
Websites can be a frustrating thing when they’re not bringing in sales at a reasonable rate.
To make the most of this investment, you’ve got to learn what you can do to help your website do more.
If you’re not getting everything you can out of it, your website becomes a burden and an expense.Small business owners don’t need extra expenses. Click To Tweet
And you don’t need more of those.
Thankfully, websites don’t need anything too challenging to assure they’re doing their part.
However, you need to be prepared to invest more time and effort into it.
When you can make it work right, though, the amount of sales your website will bring makes it all worth it.
Your website can – and should – pay for itself.
When you start to earn more sales from your website, it will.
You Can’t Earn More Sales From Your Website Unless You Define The Sale
What does it look like when your website earns a sale?
Without a clear definition, it’s hard to make more of them happen.
To earn more sales from your website you need to define what a sale from your website is.
For many small businesses that’s a straightforward idea.
If they have an e-commerce site, they earn a direct sale through their website.
Any time a website visitor orders the product or service, that’s a sale.Can you define what it looks like when your website gets you a sale? Click To Tweet
However, for some small businesses, it may be a little more complicated.
That’s because sales don’t happen on the website for their businesses.
The process of the sale happens over time, usually requiring a lot of follow up.
And for those small businesses, it may be confusing to identify which sales need to be attributed to the website and which don’t.
Just because you earned a customer from someone who filled out a form on your website doesn’t necessarily mean they found you and began the process through your website, right?
Truly, the definition of a sale through your website is up to you.
The definition isn’t nearly as important as defining it is.
Once you know what you’re looking for, you can figure out how to get more of it.
How To Manage Your Website To Earn More Sales
Proper website management is key to making sure your site is always maximizing it’s potential.
It’s also something that many small business owners tend to struggle with.
For a quarter of small business owners, it’s their biggest website challenge.
If that’s the case, what is it that small business owners can do about it?
To start, they can learn.
I know that might sound overly simplistic, but the truth is that you as a small business owner can learn the principles of website management.Sometimes the answer is overly simple. In this case, you learn. Click To Tweet
Once you know them it’s much easier to earn more sales from your website.
That’s because you’ll understand what your site visitors need to see and experience to convert them to leads.
You’ll also understand what your site is doing and how it’s doing it, which will help you learn how to do it better.
Through constant improvement not only will you earn more sales from your website but you’ll also continue to grow your business.
Here are the basics of managing your website.
Make Sure You Have A Website
This sounds like the dumbest thing on the planet to have to say, but you can’t manage a website if you don’t have one.
You also can’t earn sales through it.
But the truth is that I have to start with this statement.
While many will likely make the change soon, it still surprises me in a world where everyone is online all the time.
Websites are the first places that people will often go to find out information about a brand.
Without one, you lose all the opportunities to earn those would-be visitors as clients.
The reasons vary but primarily revolve around the perceived value of a website or the idea that social media makes a sufficient placeholder.
Both ideas are faulty, though.
Your potential clients, whether you sell to consumers or businesses, expect you to have a website.
Having one indicates to them that you care enough about your brand to solidify your online presence.
A website is an authoritative way to show your audience what your brand is worth.
Once they understand how much you bring to the table, they’ll become your clients.
If you want to earn more sales from your website, you’re going to have to build a website.
Keep Your Website Well-Maintained
One of the most frustrating things to deal with is a website that doesn’t quite work right.
Anything from faulty text alignment to a site completely designed in Flash (remember those?) drives visitors crazy.
Sometimes I wonder how things like that happen to a website?
There’s no way you’d earn more sales from your website with those problems.
Then I realize that the site probably isn’t maintained.
Which poses a big problem.
If you expect your site to earn its return, it needs to continuously work right.
Errors, glitches, and outdated software will all interfere with your site’s ability to convert someone into a lead or a sale.
Proper website maintenance is critical to assuring your website can do its job.
Amazingly, those who don’t maintain their website properly and make sure it works are losing over half of their website visitors permanently.
That’s a bad thing, and it doesn’t help you earn more sales from your website.
Therefore, it’s important in a big way to maintain your website properly.
It’s the only way you’ll get it to earn its keep.
Hire A Dedicated Website Team
Managing a website can take a lot of time.
Considering how valuable a commodity time is for most small business owners, I’m sure you don’t like the idea of taking more of it out of your day.
And, as it turns out, the best way to manage and earn more sales from your website is to avoid doing it yourself.
It’s also to avoid having anyone do it part-time.
Instead, you need to consider having a dedicated website team.
Most small businesses are dividing their employees’ time between other work tasks and website management.
Less than a quarter have an in-house employee who oversees the website full time.
That means most small business websites are being managed without the right experience.
Chances are they’re also only being minimally managed.
Many website factors, like data analysis and site improvements, are likely to be overlooked.
But these all need to be a part of the process if you want to earn more sales from your website.
A dedicated website team, whether in-house or outsourced, can handle that correctly.
When you add a full-time website manager or management team with the right experience and know-how, you’ll easily get more from your website.
Because their time and focus aren’t divided, they can do what it takes to help earn more sales from your website.
Meanwhile, the rest of your team – yourself included – can get back to what they do best.
Focus On The Website User
Many small business owners talk a lot about SEO and their search rank.
They know it’s something important to make sure they’re getting the most from their website, yet they don’t understand the nuances behind it.
As a result, when that mindset makes website decisions, they design the site with search in mind.
And they forget the user altogether.
It turns out that about a third of small businesses only have a website so they can rank.
The problem here is that an SEO-focused website doesn’t look right to the average website visitor.
Though the goal of SEO is to drive traffic to help earn more leads from your website, focusing on SEO first will hurt more than it helps.
Instead, you’ve got to put the user first.
Think about the information you’re presenting to site visitors.
Do what you can to make sure it’s easy to ingest and simple to understand as they scroll through it.
Keep the terminology as basic as possible while still offering complete information.
Rather than focusing on how many keywords you can add, focus on how much value you can bring to the table.
Make everything look, feel, and flow as organically as possible.
Assure that the user can comfortably find, navigate, and understand the information you’ve included on your site.
When you do, you help earn more leads from your website through that search traffic you worked so hard to get.
Produce Useful Content Regularly
Content is one of the biggest factors in making a website successful at anything.
It’s a massive part of SEO, it earns incredible audience trust, and it’s the most important part of earning more sales from your website.
And you wonder why I harp on it so often.
Through your content, you earn the chance to connect with your audience and show them the value of your brand.
So, it’s in your best interest to regularly produce content that helps your audience.
A solid content strategy is composed of clear keyword choices, a publishing schedule, a primary content channel, and a plan to distribute your content.
When all of these take their place in your strategy, you’ll start to see a boost in your website traffic.
More audience engagement will occur on your social channels, allowing your content to be seen by more people.
That offers more people a reason to visit your site.
Plus, when produced correctly, the content will help to boost your search rank, which creates more search traffic.
Not only will it create more opportunity, but it’s also user-focused like we just discussed.
The content you produce isn’t done with SEO at the forefront.
Instead, you’re focusing on education.
Exactly what the right audience is looking for when they come to your content.
By educating them, you earn their trust and loyalty.
They’ll come to you when they’re ready for what you offer.
Great content will quickly show you why it’s a key element needed to earn more sales from your website.
The Key Elements To Earn More Sales From Your Website
Aside from managing your website correctly, you’ll need to make sure there are a few key elements on your site.
These are functional components that are required to earn more sales from your website.
You can not earn sales without them.
Not having them is like not having a website, and we already talked about that problem.
Each of these components is critical to a functional sales funnel.
They’re also factors that help build trust with your target audience.
When you can successfully earn the trust of your audience, you can earn them as a customer.
Therefore, these elements are not only important, they’re mandatory.
With that in mind, now that you know how to manage your website, let’s make sure you have the elements you need to earn more leads from your website.
The Ability To Work On Any Device
Websites that feature responsive design became mandatory in 2012.
However, I’ve been encouraging it since before that.
There isn’t a website today that shouldn’t work equally well on a tablet, phone, laptop, or desktop.
Similarly, they need to work in any browser.
Don’t believe me?
Think about how you read most content.
Probably on your phone, right?
And if you look around, others are doing the same.
Mobile devices account for over half of Google search inquiries, and as a result, Google decided to penalize sites that don’t work well on mobile devices.
So, if you expect to earn more sales from your website, you need to make sure everyone that comes to it can use it right.
Responsive design is critical to making your site easy to read, understand, and use on any device.
If your website developer knows what they’re doing, your site should already be responsive.
That means you don’t need to pinch and zoom to see it on your phone.
But if your site isn’t working right on mobile, it’s time to get it updated.
You can’t earn more sales from your website if nobody can use it.
Complete Descriptions Of Who You Are And What You Offer
Your target market needs to know who you are.
They need to know how your company can help them.
That’s what they came to your site to find out.
If you want to earn more sales from your website, visitors need to know who they’re working with and why they should.
Believe it or not, people aren’t likely to choose your company because of the product or service on its own.
Other companies offer something close enough to never notice the difference.
A quality product can only take you so far among your competition.
It’s the brand behind that product or service that people are buying.
Among millennials, who collectively make up the largest buying power in America today, the brand behind the product is as important – if not more so – than the product itself.
But the way the brand presents the product matters as well.
Therefore, you need to make sure that you present your brand and your product in the most authentic way possible.
Tell the whole story about how your company came to be what it is today.
Share the beliefs and philosophies that make up your brand.
Those connecting points are what strengthen your relationship with your audience and allow you to earn more sales from your website.
A Clear Call-To-Action
Once someone is interested in your brand and product, what should they do?
That’s what a call-to-action serves to answer.
Calls-to-action are the signposts that help take website visitors through your site on the journey to becoming your customer.
When they’re placed effectively and freed from surrounding clutter, they become a clear indication of what you want your site visitors to do next.
And people often follow them.
Used correctly, a CTA will help you drive site visitors through the right path on your site.
CTAs should be visible to your site visitors immediately, standing out from the rest of the page with a stark, contrasting color.
Every page should contain one, and they should usually lead to the same goal.
A visitor that clicks one should enter the first step of the sales process, whatever that is for you.
Without one, likely, many visitors will simply leave before they’ve given you their information.
However, with a properly optimized CTA, you can assure that you earn more sales through your website.
Valuable Incentives To Exchange Information
Have you ever visited a website that asked you to give them your name and email address in exchange for access to the information you wanted?
It’s a common practice to help earn leads.
They’re called lead magnets, and they’re gated content designed to earn the contact information of potential customers.
Typically, these lead magnets contain information that would only be useful to someone who was in the company’s target market.
This way leads are prequalified and sorted based on the information they accessed.
Lead magnets only work if they and the information that precedes them are valuable.
And they’re something you must put to work.
Without a value exchange, you’ll never have the opportunity to follow up with site visitors that didn’t buy.
Which, by definition, is just over 97% of them.
You’ll need to be able to contact those lost visitors if you want to stop them from being lost sales.
But a great lead magnet with high-value content is the kind of incentive people need to exchange their contact information.
Once you understand what a great lead magnet contains, producing one should be simple.
To put it basically, it should include key information that’s further in-depth than what’s on your website, answering tough questions or providing assistance to your prime, purchase-ready audience.
Creating one and putting it to use is a key factor to help you earn more sales from your website, which is exactly what it’s designed to do.
Plenty Of Social Proof
Why should anyone believe what you say about your company?
You’re expected to speak highly of it, regardless of the overall opinion.
So much so that people tend to ignore most small business owners when they talk about their own company.
It’s going to take a different angle to get people to understand the value of your brand and eliminate hesitation to work with you.
That’s what social proof is for.
Social proof is anything that comes from a source outside your company letting your website visitors know how great your company is.
People are inclined to listen to the opinions of people with no vested interest in your company’s success.
However, it goes beyond that.
There’s a psychological element to social proof that transforms those offering testimonials and reviews into authorities on the subject.
When people don’t know the right way to behave in a situation (like deciding what company to work with), they copy the behavior of others who have gotten the desired result.
Therefore, as they copy the behavior of others who bought, they become your customer.
And that social proof helps you earn more leads from your website.
Earn More Sales From Your Website With A Better Website
At the end of the day, your website has to be better than it was if you want to earn more sales from it.
It’s going to take regular improvement and a continual willingness to study what works.
As the first stop on the customer’s journey, you need to make sure your website is the last place they need to look to solve their issue.
That’s the way you earn more sales from your website.