Fix these unpleasant-looking website elements now

According to the cliché, one shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. But in marketing, looks do matter. Having an attractive website design is often your first opportunity to make a good impression on potential customers. So if your site’s looks aren’t up to par, visitors may close the web tab and you lose the chance of making a sale. Here are some things to tweak on your website to pique viewers’ interest and close more sales.

Photos

From product shots to team photos, high-quality images are arguably the most attention-grabbing element you can have on your website. Blurry, outdated, or irrelevant pictures tell site visitors that you don’t care about their browsing experience. In-house photos are the best option, but stock images shouldn’t cause any problems as long as they are optimized for mobile viewing and relevant to your content.

Navigation

Aside from having subpar images, linking to nonexistent pages is one of the best ways to turn site visitors away. Make sure site navigation is a breeze, and remove outdated or irrelevant pages. You can’t sell 404 pages to customers, and if that’s all visitors can find, your chances of making a sale will be close to nil.

Copywriting

It’s important to keep all of your product or service descriptions as straightforward as possible — the last thing you want to do is to confuse your customers. If what you’re selling has detailed information such as dimensions or technical requirements, make sure that the item descriptions are clear and concise. They should also be easy to find but not obtrusive.

Promises to site visitors

Any website that ships products should make its returns policy as visible as possible. This establishes trust early on in the buyer’s journey. Explicitly stating terms of return is also important because some online shoppers make purchase decisions based solely on the clarity of a return policy.

Even if you don’t run an eCommerce site, you still need to prominently display privacy commitments, such as those mandated by the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

About Us page

To further create a connection with your site visitors, your brand needs a relatable story behind it. Every company website should have an About Us page that describes its team, culture, and what sets the business apart from the competition. Some customers buy products and services based on a business’s mission or vision, and some make decisions according to their impression of the people behind the business. Whatever your story is, make sure your About Us page is accessible from any page on your site.

The bottom line

With more revenue coming in from online channels, small- and medium-sized business owners can’t afford to overlook the importance of creating a fully functional, aesthetically pleasing, and easy-to-navigate website. If your budget is tight, there are DIY site builders specifically geared toward small businesses. With a relatively low monthly expenditure, you can also hire a managed website provider who will design and maintain your site for you.

Your website’s overall look and design can make or break a sale. For more information on building a modern website, call us today.

This post was originally published on this site

Fix these unpleasant-looking website elements now

According to the cliché, one shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. But in marketing, looks do matter. Having an attractive website design is often your first opportunity to make a good impression on potential customers. So if your site’s looks aren’t up to par, visitors may close the web tab and you lose the chance of making a sale. Here are some things to tweak on your website to pique viewers’ interest and close more sales.

Photos

From product shots to team photos, high-quality images are arguably the most attention-grabbing element you can have on your website. Blurry, outdated, or irrelevant pictures tell site visitors that you don’t care about their browsing experience. In-house photos are the best option, but stock images shouldn’t cause any problems as long as they are optimized for mobile viewing and relevant to your content.

Navigation

Aside from having subpar images, linking to nonexistent pages is one of the best ways to turn site visitors away. Make sure site navigation is a breeze, and remove outdated or irrelevant pages. You can’t sell 404 pages to customers, and if that’s all visitors can find, your chances of making a sale will be close to nil.

Copywriting

It’s important to keep all of your product or service descriptions as straightforward as possible — the last thing you want to do is to confuse your customers. If what you’re selling has detailed information such as dimensions or technical requirements, make sure that the item descriptions are clear and concise. They should also be easy to find but not obtrusive.

Promises to site visitors

Any website that ships products should make its returns policy as visible as possible. This establishes trust early on in the buyer’s journey. Explicitly stating terms of return is also important because some online shoppers make purchase decisions based solely on the clarity of a return policy.

Even if you don’t run an eCommerce site, you still need to prominently display privacy commitments, such as those mandated by the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

About Us page

To further create a connection with your site visitors, your brand needs a relatable story behind it. Every company website should have an About Us page that describes its team, culture, and what sets the business apart from the competition. Some customers buy products and services based on a business’s mission or vision, and some make decisions according to their impression of the people behind the business. Whatever your story is, make sure your About Us page is accessible from any page on your site.

The bottom line

With more revenue coming in from online channels, small- and medium-sized business owners can’t afford to overlook the importance of creating a fully functional, aesthetically pleasing, and easy-to-navigate website. If your budget is tight, there are DIY site builders specifically geared toward small businesses. With a relatively low monthly expenditure, you can also hire a managed website provider who will design and maintain your site for you.

Your website’s overall look and design can make or break a sale. For more information on building a modern website, call us today.

This post was originally published on this site

Improve customer data collection with these tips

As businesses continue to use more apps and tools that allow them to collect, store, and process customer information, the amount of data in their systems grows exponentially. However, not all of the collected information is important or even useful. Gathering more data requires finding a way to keep everything organized and relevant. These tips to improve data collection processes are the best place to start.

Customer data collection offers a suite of business benefits, but there is a limit to what kind of data can be gathered. Customer privacy has become a serious concern in modern society, and there are various regulatory frameworks that ensure the protection of people’s private information. To avoid running afoul of the law, inform your customers that you will be collecting their data, and specify exactly what data you’ll be gathering.

1. Collect identifiers
Whether you’re creating an online survey or a signup form, collecting identifying information (i.e., names, date of birth, age, gender, address, etc.) is crucial. This information will form the foundation for future analysis and segmentation.

2. Track customer interactions
Define important customer interactions. For example, if you own an online store, you need to know how your customers arrived at your site, the items they clicked on, the items they added to their cart, and what they eventually purchased. Tracking each step of their buyer journey — from learning about your business to becoming a customer — will give you insights into what your customers need and want.

3. Gather behavior-related data
Don’t focus solely on customers who made a purchase. Think about what other indicators produce meaningful data. In our online store example, you might want to track how many sign up for your email newsletter, which pages they visited on your site, or how much time they spent on each page. Analyzing this information will help you determine which aspects of your efforts are most effective and which ones need improvement.

4. Automate data collection
When gathering customer data, you must minimize the risk of human error. The most effective strategy is to automate as much of the collection process as possible. Apps and tools such as online forms and optical character recognition systems feed information directly into your database and eliminate paper-centric processes that often lead to mistakes.

5. Integrate your systems
Redundancies and errors are also common when there are multiple databases managing the same information. You can prevent these issues by working with an IT provider to integrate all your apps, databases, and software solutions. This way, data collected in one database will be synced and consistent across other platforms, reducing manual data entry and, consequently, human error.

6. Consider who will view the reports
Inevitably, you’ll need to convert data into business intelligence reports. It’s a good idea to identify who will read your reports so you can highlight the most relevant insights for them. For instance, sales managers want to see quarterly sales figures, and human resources teams want to see labor costs compared to revenue.

7. Update data in real time
Companies today need up-to-the-minute data accuracy in order to stay relevant. Use business intelligence dashboards that collect, organize, and filter data at the click of a button so that you’ll never have to wait a day or more to receive critical information that can guide company decisions.

Looking for technologies that can help you optimize data collection? Call our IT consultants today. We’ll recommend best-of-breed technologies that track the information you need to grow your business.

This post was originally published on this site

Improve customer data collection with these tips

As businesses continue to use more apps and tools that allow them to collect, store, and process customer information, the amount of data in their systems grows exponentially. However, not all of the collected information is important or even useful. Gathering more data requires finding a way to keep everything organized and relevant. These tips to improve data collection processes are the best place to start.

Customer data collection offers a suite of business benefits, but there is a limit to what kind of data can be gathered. Customer privacy has become a serious concern in modern society, and there are various regulatory frameworks that ensure the protection of people’s private information. To avoid running afoul of the law, inform your customers that you will be collecting their data, and specify exactly what data you’ll be gathering.

1. Collect identifiers
Whether you’re creating an online survey or a signup form, collecting identifying information (i.e., names, date of birth, age, gender, address, etc.) is crucial. This information will form the foundation for future analysis and segmentation.

2. Track customer interactions
Define important customer interactions. For example, if you own an online store, you need to know how your customers arrived at your site, the items they clicked on, the items they added to their cart, and what they eventually purchased. Tracking each step of their buyer journey — from learning about your business to becoming a customer — will give you insights into what your customers need and want.

3. Gather behavior-related data
Don’t focus solely on customers who made a purchase. Think about what other indicators produce meaningful data. In our online store example, you might want to track how many sign up for your email newsletter, which pages they visited on your site, or how much time they spent on each page. Analyzing this information will help you determine which aspects of your efforts are most effective and which ones need improvement.

4. Automate data collection
When gathering customer data, you must minimize the risk of human error. The most effective strategy is to automate as much of the collection process as possible. Apps and tools such as online forms and optical character recognition systems feed information directly into your database and eliminate paper-centric processes that often lead to mistakes.

5. Integrate your systems
Redundancies and errors are also common when there are multiple databases managing the same information. You can prevent these issues by working with an IT provider to integrate all your apps, databases, and software solutions. This way, data collected in one database will be synced and consistent across other platforms, reducing manual data entry and, consequently, human error.

6. Consider who will view the reports
Inevitably, you’ll need to convert data into business intelligence reports. It’s a good idea to identify who will read your reports so you can highlight the most relevant insights for them. For instance, sales managers want to see quarterly sales figures, and human resources teams want to see labor costs compared to revenue.

7. Update data in real time
Companies today need up-to-the-minute data accuracy in order to stay relevant. Use business intelligence dashboards that collect, organize, and filter data at the click of a button so that you’ll never have to wait a day or more to receive critical information that can guide company decisions.

Looking for technologies that can help you optimize data collection? Call our IT consultants today. We’ll recommend best-of-breed technologies that track the information you need to grow your business.

This post was originally published on this site