In today’s episode:
- 01:02 – How long do you have to keep people on your website
- 02:40 – Conversion Rule 1: Craft compelling copy
- 04:33 – Conversion Rule 2: Make it easy for search engines
- 05:40 – Bonus: Make sure your website loads quickly
- 07:15 – Conversion Rule 3: Collect leads, don’t waste them
- 08:50 – Conversion Rule 4: Keep important information above the fold
- 10:30 – Conversion Rule 5: Have clear CTAs. As many as it takes.
- 12:10 – Conversion Rule 6: Add a Faceobook Like box
- 14:25 – Conversion Rule 7: Include Testimonials
- 15:05 – Conversion Rule 8: Show your connection with known brands
- 15:55 – Conversion Rule 9: Have clean navigation
- 17:00 – Conversion Rule 10: Learn more at the Ultimate Web Blueprint
Transcription starts here:
Peter: Don’t go anywhere, because we’ve got Fiona Soutter coming up and we are going to talk about the 7 steps to a high converting website.
Belinda: I am so excited about that! We’ve had Fiona before and she is fantastic!
Peter: I am really excited as well! Don’t go anywhere, we are on Eagle Tech Genius; you can follow on with us on #radioew or at EagleWavesRadio.com.au; stream on the iPhone via the live365 app, or you can visit us at Vevo Cafe 388 George Street! We will be back very soon.
1:02 – How long before your visitors leave your website?
Peter: Welcome back to Eagle Tech Genius, I am super excited to have Fiona Soutter from Super Savvy Business back in the studio. Fiona, welcome again.
Fiona: Thank you very much, Peter, it’s fantastic to be here again!
Belinda: So good to have you back! We’ve got some very exciting things we are going to talk with you about tonight, are we not?
Fiona: I know, you see, I always get excited when I start talking techno-geeky stuff so…
Belinda: Yay! So do weeee!
Peter: So, Fiona is an expert content marketer, she is an expert in all things online, SEO, web strategy and this evening Fiona is going to give us her 7 immutable website rules for a high converting site. Fiona, would you like to jump straight into it? We’ve got so much to talk about.
Fiona: Yeah, certainly. Look guys, at the end of the day, when people are surfing the web, you basically only have up to 3 seconds to grab their attention.
Peter: It used to be 7, didn’t it?
Fiona: Yeah, well…
Peter: It used to be 7, now it’s 3.
Fiona: The people’s… their attention spans must be getting lower (laughs).
Peter: Too much Facebook!
[they all laugh]
Fiona: So it’s really important that the minute people get to your website that they feel that it is a website worth looking into. So I often get people saying to me, “Look, I have built this website and it’s not doing anything for me; I am not getting any calls, I am not getting any business, I am not making any sales – what am I doing wrong?” And I have a look at it and I can see straight away that they are breaking a lot of the basic rules when it comes to web design and setting up your website so it converts.
So coming on tonight I really just wanted to share my top 10 strategies; now, obviously I could go on and on. There is a lot more. But let’s start at the first one:
2:40 – Conversion Rule 1: Craft compelling webcopy
If someone is arriving on your website, first of all make sure that you’ve got a really compelling headline and website copy that is going to grab their attention. So rather than saying “Welcome to our website!” (uhm, yawn…) what can you come up with which is going to grab their attention? You know?
“Attention all business owners! Are you frustrated with having a website that doesn’t convert?”
You know? That’s going to speak loud volumes to a business owner.
Peter: That’s a great trigger.
Belinda: Yeah… So highlighting the problem, is that it?
Fiona: Exactly! You get on, you click on, you’ve got a copy click when you actually stop people on their track, like, “Attention!”, “Stop!”, or all of those sorts of things. But use the words like “You”, and “Your”; don’t get caught up in talking about “We” and “I” all the time.
Peter: I read in a web marketing forum, I think it was yesterday, that someone put the word “Booya!” as their title and it increased their conversions by 200%.
Fiona: Exactly! Because people aren’t expecting to see that sort of thing, are they?
Peter: No, no! And I think it was just that… it broke the mold and it got them to stop and think and read the rest of the copy.
Fiona: Yeah. And in regards to the copy too, what you’ve got to think is people are looking to see within the first few seconds whether the site is going to give them the solutions to their problems. So make sure your copy is scannable. And when I say that, make sure you don’t have big blocks of dense text, use subheadlines, bold the most important phrases, use bullet points, all those sorts of things are really important because it makes it easy for people to scan through and find the content of your site and find out what it’s about.
Peter: So great copy to grab the attention.
Fiona: Yeah, that’s right! And people get caught up also in having these brochure websites, where it’s all really pretty… really, we want to be direct response; it’s where you are actually asking people to take the action you want them to take, and that’s very important not just in design, but in the actual copy as well.
Fiona: So that’s my first tip.
4:33 – Conversion Rule 2: Make it easy for the search engines
The second thing is, make it easy for the search engines. Because there is nothing worse than having a website that is set up wholly and the search engines can’t scan through it to find out what your website is about; or, you are breaking the rules that the search engines have in place. Because if you do any of those things your site is just not going to rank and nobody will ever find you.
So I am going to talk Google just because it is one of the main search engines.
So the first thing I suggest is make sure that your site is Google compliant: little things like having a sitemap in the footer menu, having a contact page with not just a contact form, but actually a phone number or an address, especially if you sell things online, you must have a way for people to contact you.
Peter: And Google actually read that address as well, won’t they? They will read the text of the address.
Fiona: That’s right! Even putting a Google Map in is going to help you.
Belinda: So Fiona do you recommend putting your actual phone number an email there for even the spam bots to see or have something like a Contact Form, or separating the email with the actual written word, like it happens sometimes? What do you recommend?
Fiona: Yeah, there is a problem. So if you don’t want to put your email, then don’t put it, but have a Contact Form, but definitely a phone number and and address of some sort.
Belinda: Great! Yep.
5:40 – Make sure your website loads quickly
Fiona: Making sure your website loads quickly. Because that is something that can really inhibit your site from ranking well in the search engines. Making sure that it’s got what we call “clean code” in the background.
This all does sound a little bit techno geeky, but if you would like to have your webmaster or whoever looks after your website go through and make sure your website is Google compliant. If you go to this web address, this will redirect to Google’s actual address where they basically list out clearly what your site should have and what it must not have.
Now the web address is: www.supersavvybusiness.com/webmaster-guidelines and that will redirect to the Google page.
The other thing as far as making it easy for the search engines is ensuring that keywords that you are trying to rank for are prominent in your site, in your page. So that means making sure that the keywords are in the URL of your webpage, making sure – and this is talking a bit technogeeky here – but in things like the header tags, the page descriptions, in the actual body of your copy… have it in there, but don’t shove it in so many times that is considered to be spammy, and don’t have the exact same phrase ten times.
Peter: And you can check that with your web consultant if you are not sure what the header tags are, and that kind of thing.
Fiona: Yeah, so if you don’t look after your site yourself you don’t know what it is exactly; whoever manages your site, just make sure you have your keywords there.
So that’s tip number 2.
7:15 – Conversion Rule 3 – Collect leads, don’t waste them
The other thing… my third tip is to make your website help you to build leads. And what I mean by that is, what are you doing to collect details from people who might come to your site but might not be ready to actually do business with you?
So this is what we call having an optin. And the optin should be nice and juicy and actually be something that they really really really want.
So… “Subscribe to our newsletter” ? M-m. Most people don’t want another newsletter around in their email Inbox. So think about your ideal customer’s main problem that they are looking for solutions to and then create something you can give away for free in return for a name and an email address.
Generally speaking, a first name and an email address is about all you want to ask for.
Now you could give that to them in the form of an ebook, a report, an ecourse… it could be a series of videos; you can deliver that content in lots and lots of different ways. But try and think, “What is really going to tempt my ideal customer to give me the name and email address in order to have this thing… the optin?”
Belinda: Yep… so, building relationships…
Fiona: Yeah, that’s right, but once you’ve got their name and email addresses as you say, you can start to build a relationship with them and that “Know-Like-Trust” factor and that might be 6 months, 12 months… I’ve even had a customer come to me after 18 months of being on my database and he said, “Look, I really, really wanted to come to you but it just wasn’t the right time and now it is”.
Belinda: Yeah, exactly, so you’ve built on that relationship over time through your content marketing and now you have a client.
Fiona: Yea, yes. And imagine if I hadn’t collected their details; I might not have got their business in the long run.
8:50 – Conversion Rule 4 – Keep important information above the fold
So heading over to point 4… when you land on a website, you often don’t see the whole website, do you? You often just see a small portion of it and the rest of it you have to scroll down to see. The bit that you actually see is known as, we call that “Above the fold”. Okay? Now, depending on the size of your screen you might see smaller or larger amounts.
There should be some sort of CTA, and think about what is the main action I want people to take when they come to my website? Is it that I want them to pick up the phone and call me? Is it that I want them to opt in to my optin box? (which is what we’ve just discussed)
Think about what that action is and ensure that you have not just your logo but an attention grabbing headline and a CTA for the most important information.
So when we considered all of that … talking about logos – sometimes I’ve seen logos that are really really big. We don’t need to have big logos, and sometimes that header area is way too wide; it can just be nice and narrow.
Fiona: So that’s the big thing. I mean, you also have to have your branding there, but it is not THE most important part of your page, is it?
Belinda: Not necessarily! (she laughs)
Fiona: And… we spoke a little bit about, uhm, the copy at the beginning, but making sure you’ve got copy that does speak directly to your target market when they arrive… then when you are using those words “You” and “yours”, they are like “Oh, yes! They understand me, they are talking to me!” It’s almost like you are reaching out through that web and talking to them.
Belinda: Yeah, exactly. Yeah.
10:30 – Conversion Rule 5 – Have clear CTAs. As many as it takes.
Fiona: Now we talked about a clear CTA. So that’s tip number 5: make sure that’s clear. And don’t have too many CTAs on the same page. So is it that you need people to ring you to make an appointment? Is it that you want people to buy something now? Is it that you’ve adjust this page simply to collect a name and an email address?
So make that clear and don’t just ask them to take that action once; ask several times.
Peter: And so, if you’ve got like a video or something on the page, should you put some CTA in the video? Should you be reminding them to take the action?
Fiona: Definitely! And you could even do that 2 or 3 times.
Peter: Wow! That’s cool.
Belinda: So if you’ve got a video on the page and a CTA as a button… is that bad? How many optimally do you want on the page?
Fiona: As many as it takes. So, for instance, if you were to go to MumpreneursOnline.com, which is one of my websites, you’ll see that there’s a video; in the video I actually point and say, “Put your details on the left…” and I point across …
Peter: Wow, that’s cool.
Fiona: Then there is a big arrow from the video going over, pointing to where I want them to put their details. Then I have compelling copy in the actual button: it doesn’t just say “Submit”; it says “Get my ecourse now”.
So in several ways.. visually, with auditory cues, and then with words we are telling people what we want them to do.
Belinda: So it kind of sounds like a bit of verbal and visual hand holding to get them to do what you want.
Fiona: Yeah, and this is what direct response is all about, is it? Hand holding people to get them across, to move them to where you want them to be.
Belinda: Yes, because people can be lazy, and the easier something is, then the more likely they are to do it.
Fiona: That’s exactly right. Yep.
12:10 – Conversion Rule 6: Add a Facebook Like Box
So tip number 6 is social proof. Now, look, the internet these days… we know there is a lot of scammers out there, there is a lot of people blowing their trumpets and saying “We’re wonderful!”. So how do we get past that? How do we create that level of trust to show people when they arrive on your site that you are not just a legitimate business, but you are someone that can be trusted to do business with?
There are a couple of ways we can include social proof on our website:
One is through social media. So, put a Facebook Like box. So if you’ve got a following on Facebook and you’ve got a couple of hundred, or even a thousand, or even is it’s just 80 people following you, put that there because that is showing that you’ve got people who are actually prepared to put their name to liking your business.
Now it’s a very clever little device this Facebook Like box, because what will happen is … let’s say you and I are friends and you’ve likes Joe’s fishing chip-chop. And I am looking for a fishing chip-chop and I come to their website and they’ve got a Facebook Like box there. I will see your face on their website because the Facebook Like box will actually pull anybody I know into that Like box and I will see your face.
From the social proof point of view, I am thinking, “Wow! Belinda likes it, so they must be alright!”.
Belinda: Yeah, it’s all about the influence, isn’t it? Yeah…
Fiona: That’s right! It’s quite subtly done, but it’s amazing how that can make a difference.
Peter: And should that be done on the bottom in the footer or be on the side, or where do you put the Like box?
Fiona: Well, generally speaking, the Like box… just on the optin box, just reverse back … I did mean to mention that the best place generally is the top right corner. Now obviously you test and measure for your site. You can move it around and see where it converts well, but top right is generally where the eye goes. Now I have found that the Facebook Like box is positioned best underneath that, on the right hand side.
Peter: And would that be above the fold or below the fold? Is that past the first page?
Fiona: Look, it depends on what is most important to you. If the most important thing is to get people to opt in, then that may actually slip below. It really depends on what’s most important, but I try and keep the social media proof as high as possible. You don’t want people to have to scroll down too far.
14:25 – Conversion Rule 7 – Include Testimonials
The other thing that you can do, of course, is have testimonials available on your site. Now, written is okay, but if you can get video testimonials that’s even better, because then they see it’s real people, not just made up people. Because you might see a written testimonial and say, “Well, anybody could have written that and put a name to it, really, we don’t know who that person is”. But to see someone real talking about their experience with your company and your business it makes people feel a lot more comfortable.
So get the testimonials in. If you can, try and get them on the Homepage. Maybe do a video of several testimonials placed together; that’s one way of getting around instead of having 10 videos sitting there.
15:05 – Conversion Rule 8 – Show your connection with known brands
And the other thing as far as social proof is concerned is see if you can show your connection with known brands. So if you are an electrician and there’s industry bodies that you can remember of or that you are associated with, put those badges there.
Or, for instance, if you have been featured in media, for instance on my website you’ll see that I have been featured in several known newspapers, and on Amazon, iTunes, and all of those sorts of things.
Put those badges and those logos there because that is, once again, showing that you are connected with known, trusted brands.
Okay, so get those on your page if you can.
Peter: Cool, what’s the last step? I’m excited! I’m just thinking I have this massive To-Do list in my head with all the things I need to do on my site.
[they all laugh]
15:55 – Conversion Rule 9 – Have clean navigation
Fiona: Look, the next one is a very simple one to fix, but it is a mistake that many people make, and that’s not having clean navigation.
So make sure you make it easy for people and try most to reduce the amount of clicks people need to take to get to things – but no more than 3.
Just keep it simple – that’s the main thing I would say.
Peter: And Google will even find your site more attractive if it’s easy to navigate, won’t it?
Fiona: It certainly will. The easier you can make it for the end user, the more Google will like you. So definitely keep your navigation simple.
Peter: Wow! They are all excellent, excellent tips, Fiona.
Fiona: Thank you very much. What I would like just to end with is, here’s a rule of thumb guys:
Belinda: So unfortunate… [laughs]
Fiona: I see people getting caught up with these beautiful graphic sites with all these big photo sliders and all these pretty things, but really that can be distracting to the end user as far as getting the information they require and getting to it quickly.
17:00 – Conversion Rule 10 – Learn more at the Ultimate Web Blueprint
Belinda: Yep, so follow the formats. And I believe you’ve got something of a format coming up soon?
Fiona: I certainly do. On the 3rd of August I will be presenting a one day workshop called the Ultimate Web Blueprint; it’s going to be on 99 York street here in the city.
Now, I cover things like what I have just talked about but in a whole day I go through a lot more, such as:
We talk about building your business through virtual staff members
We talk about business systemisation
We talk about lots and lots of different things, and from the feedback, if you go to the Ultimate Web Blueprint website you’ll see feedback from people who’ve been to this workshop and they will all say to you this is not a day of fluff.
I am not one of these people who talk fluff, I can deliver real content that you can walk away and implement. So I would like to put a special offer out to some of the Eagle Waves listeners…
So if anyone would like to come along to that workshop as my guest I will have 5 double passes up for grabs.
Peter: Wooow! That’s awesome!!
Fiona: All you need to do is email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org and the first 5 people to send me that email will grab one of those double passes. So it’s the 3rd of August, is a full day workshop and I will look forward to seeing some Eagle Waves listeners there!
Belinda: Fantastic! Get on your emails right now!
Peter: That’s awesome!! Having been to Fiona’s events before I know they are awesome and sadly we only have 15 minutes to squeeze just a little bit of your vast array of knowledge into the show.
Fiona thank you so much for coming on again and we look forward to chatting to you again soon.
Fiona: Thank you guys, it’s been an absolute pleasure and I look forward to seeing you next time!
Peter: Thanks, you can catch up with Fiona at SuperSavvyBusiness.com or look out for the Ultimate Web Blueprint event!
Peter: You are listening to Eagle Waves Radio, you can follow us on #radioew, we’ll be back soon!