06/27/07
Pimp My Website

Credit to Net Magazine for inspiring this post.

As a Search Engine Optimiser I talk alot about how to tweak your website in such a way which makes it bait for search engines, but what happens once you have your site ranking and people arrive on your site. Does your website convert clicks into customers?

There are some basic things to look for, so basic that they can be easily overlooked leaving people scratching their heads as to why they are not getting sales from their sites in comparison to their traffic.

Here are a few tips to look out for. We will use Play.com for this example.

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Website Identity
Having a strong website identity is important. You should make it clear on your site who you are and offer some background infomation about your business. This gives you credibility when a user is deciding to purchase from your site.

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Call To Action
Most of us visually scan a site when deciding if we wish to stay around, a great tip is to ensure your products are visible through images as well as providing clear links leading visitor’s to read more on your products. Images of your products as well as prices on your front page will give a clear view of what you are selling and what your site is about.

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Unique Selling Point
USP? Now there is something you have probably heard before, even still, it can make the difference when someone is considering making a puchase from your website. So what makes your site different from the rest?

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Visuals
As said previously, most people visually scan a webpage, therefore, images work a treat especially for drawing the eye to those bargain products. Utilizing visual images on your front page for selling purposes is an easy way to help your visitors spot a bargain.

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Simple Navigation
There are many large retail websites out there, so having a simple navigation is paramount when expecting visitors to find your products easily. If your navigation is messy and pages are more than 2 clicks away from your front page, then it’s time to take a long hard look at your navigation and find ways to simplify how your all important pages are found.

A great tip is to get someone who is not familiar with your site and ask them to find a particular product. Watch how they try to navigate around your site to find a specific product, if they find it easily, then congratulations, if they come across stumbling blocks and don’t manage to find the product within a few clicks, then that is a sure sign your navigation may not be doing your website any favours.

These are just some basic things which keeps your visitors happy. It is also important to remember this is not a one time consideration. As you develop your website and add more products, keep these basic rules in mind to ensure your site continues to be well structured; keeping it simple to maximise the performance of your site.