Having worked as a freelance web designer and content marketer, I know more than most how important your business website is in converting visitors into customers. Essentially, it’s your shop window, your potential clients’ insight into how you work, what you do and how much you charge.
But no matter how important it is, so many business websites miss vital opportunities to convince clients to work with them. So, in this article, I’ve put together a list of 5 vital things your business website needs to turn visitors into customers.
Note: All of these can be achieved without a developer or designer. Believe it or not, you don’t need a fancy website to convince someone to work with you. You just need the following.
5 things your website needs to turn visitors into customers
Your business website should be evolving and changing as you grow and shift your business. The design, logo, branding can all stay the same, but the part that should be regularly tweaked is your website copy (text). Each one of the tips below focuses on this aspect of your website.
1. Make it completely obvious what you do
I can’t count the number of times I’ve visited a business website and found absolutely no text telling me what it’s all about.
If you’re a freelancer, you should say immediately what you do (and you should be able to condense it into a maximum of 3 sentences). If you’re a business, you need to do the same.
If you need a little help, this formula works well (you can tweak to suit you, but be specific):
- What specific type of person/business do you help?
- What benefit do they get when working with you?
- How do you achieve this?
At the time of writing, here’s how this looks for my freelance copywriting business:
Helping digital agencies and plugin companies get more leads and sales with high-converting SEO content.
Within this one sentence, I’ve been super specific in who I help (help is key), what benefit my work gives them and how I do it. It’s simple, to the point and allows a potential client (who probably doesn’t have a lot of time) to read and understand what I do quickly.
2. Make sure you truly understand who your client is
One thing you should be focusing on for your business website is your ideal client. Every sentence on your website should convince them that you understand who they are, what their problems are and that you’re the person to help solve them.
Imagine your ideal client is visiting your site (the more specific you can be with who your client is, the easier this will be) and answer these questions:
- What problems do they have?
- How can you solve those problems?
Note: Most people either want to earn more money or get back more time. If your business can help with either of these (even in a vague way), that’s always a winner. For example, if I’m looking for someone to help me with my Pinterest presence here on Limit Breaker (which I am), I’m looking because I want someone to take the task off my hands (saving me time) and increasing the pageviews to Limit Breaker (eventually making me money).
Remember, the more specific you can be with your ideal client, the easier it is to talk to them. After all, when you’re talking to one person, you can tailor what you say to match their needs and wants.
3. Talk about the benefits, not the features
When it comes to convincing someone to part with their money, they need to know why handing over their cash will actually benefit them. In other words, you need to hear your ideal client ringing in your ears saying “what’s in it for me?”.
Look at your services page (or equivalent) and ask yourself if you are listing the features of your services or the benefits. In other words, does your service look like this:
- Onboarding questionnaire
- 4 x one-on-one coaching sessions
- Structured approach & accountability
- Recording of each coaching call
- Personalised advice to get results for your business.
Or more like this:
- A questionnaire for you to fill out so I can do my homework on your business, your goals, level of knowledge and problems your facing.
- 4 1 hour-long coaching sessions which will help you to:
- Drive more traffic to your site.
- Convert site visitors into sales.
- Automate it as much as possible to save you time.
- A recording of each call sent to you so you can re-learn what we discussed whenever you want.
I’m hoping you can see the difference between the two. In this example, the expert is offering the same thing in each service, but the way it’s written makes the second much more appealing. It talks to the targetted client, solves problems and answers questions, all in one short block of text.
4. Make sure you can prove it
If you’re saying you can achieve X, Y, Z for your ideal client, you’re going to need to prove it. I know this isn’t easy if you’re just starting out, but it’s absolutely essential.
I’ve been on both sides of the freelance world. At the time of writing, I am one, and I’ve also paid other freelancers for their services. One thing I always look for when hiring someone is if they can back up their claims with proof.
This proof can come in three forms:
- Case studies
- Facts and figures
Let’s break this down a little further because even if you have all of these on your site, they may not be working as well as you might like.
Testimonials have quite a job to do. They may live on your website, but they work as an outside influence endorsing your services. Essentially they’re manufactured social proof but work wonders in turning visitors into customers.
A good testimonial has 4 components:
- The client’s problem before they started working with you.
- The results/benefits they’ve had since working with you.
- What it was like working with you.
- If they were to recommend you to someone, what would they say?
These 4 elements you’ll want to include in every testimonial. The good news is, it’s pretty simple. Turn these 4 into questions, send them to your clients and tell them you’ll piece together their answers into a short paragraph and send it back to them for approval.
As a result, you’ll get some top quality testimonials that will do their job well.
These can be done really well if you keep your client in mind. Again, your client wants to see the benefits of working with you, so your case studies should outline the benefits/results your clients achieved in their respective projects.
Keep them short and simple and prominent on your site (especially if your results are great). One of the main problems clients face when deciding to work with someone is if it’s going to actually work or not. Your case studies will alleviate these concerns by showing undeniable proof.
Facts and figures
The facts don’t lie and people love statistics. If you can enhance your proof, either in case studies or on your website, you’re onto a winner.
There’s simply nothing more convincing than a screenshot showing traffic improvement, or sales results, or even time gained back after working with you.
Include this where you can because it’s incredibly convincing.
Have you provided enough information?
I know you don’t want to fill your website with huge paragraphs of text, but so many websites say a lot, but actually say nothing at all.
Your goal when someone visits your website is to have them arrive and then convert as quickly as possible. Making them scroll through an endless sales page is not going to make this happen – these kinds of techniques get really old, really fast.
Every paragraph of text on your website should be serving your ideal client. You should either be convincing them to buy or squashing any concerns they might have.
So, your individual service pages should be working hard to squash every concern your ideal client has.
- What’s your process like?
- What will happen each step of the way?
- How do you communicate with them?
- What are your turnaround times?
The above are pretty generic, so tailor them to your services and think about any other specific questions your clients might have and squash them.
You can do that in any of the following ways:
- By providing pdfs or a separate page on your site with your process.
- Outline it and write it as a benefit in your service description.
- Add it as an FAQ on your service page.
Turn your visitors into customers
Adapting your business website to turn your visitors into customers might be an adjustment, but trust me, it will be worth the effort. The last thing you want is to miss out on potential clients simply because you missed a few tricks.
Have you adapted your website to convert better? Leave your tips in the comments and share them with our readers.