What makes a website good at generating sales?

A successful website should provide plenty of examples of how your product or service is used in real life. You need to show the customer how he can use your product or service to accomplish his goals. A customer is not going to believe what you tell him, but he is much more likely to believe your real world examples.

A good website helps your business grow sales

Why do you have a website? Is it merely a $1,000 business card? If so, your website is not living up to its purpose. More likely, you want your website to help your business grow sales. If your goal is to grow sales, do you think your website does a good job at this? Could it do better? This last question is the one business owners, or those in charge of marketing, should be asking regularly.

How can your website do better? First, realize that to get a customer to buy your product or service your website needs to accomplish two things:

  1. Let the customer know you exist. How can the customer use your service if they don’t know about your company?
  2. Convince the customer you can serve his need. Is the customer convinced you’re not just blowing hot air and that you can really provide what you claim?

The first element, let the customer know you exist, is easy. If the customer is on your website, you’ve already accomplished this.

Convince the customer you can serve his need

The second element, convince the customer you can serve his need, is the hard part. How can you convince the customer? There are four steps to convincing the customer your product or service can help him.

  1. Provide examples of your product or service and examples of what you’ve done in the past.
  2. Briefly and succinctly describe your product or service on the first page of your website.
  3. Discreetly provide high-quality pictures of you, your employees, your offices, your equipment and products.
  4. Tell your customer what to do if they want to buy your product or service. Should they call you, email you, purchase online…?

Again, examples, examples, examples. People often say, “Show me. Don’t tell me.” Why? Because a lot of companies exaggerate what they can do. That’s why examples are easier to believe. Therefore, show examples of what you do and, if you can, what you’ve done in the past. Examples are trusted more than statements.

How many examples should you show? At least one. If you can, show more than three. It isn’t possible to have too many examples. But if you have lots of examples, make sure your examples are well organized otherwise they might be hard to understand.

Of course the three other steps are important too. On your first page put a simple explanation of what you do. On another page on your website, explain your product or service in as much detail as possible. High-quality pictures of you and aspects of your company, and a call to action, will also improve sales.

So examine your website. Is your website taking all four steps listed in this lesson? If not, then…

  • identify what changes you need to make, and
  • contact a web developer to start making those changes.

When you make positive changes, your website visitors will be much more likely to buy your products and services and to recommend them to their friends or colleagues.