Website Mistakes & HoW to avoid tHeM r

is, Not
Website Mistakes &
How to Avoid Them | 866-978-9312
© 2013 ReachLocal. All Rights Reserved. No reproduction without permission.
Website Mistakes &
How to Avoid Them
is, Not
As a core part of your online marketing strategy, your website is essential to attracting
consumers to your business. Your website is often where potential customers form their first
impressions of your company and decide whether or not to contact you. But is your website
doing all it can to attract visitors, hold their attention, and convince them to contact you?
It’s important that you aren’t making the many common mistakes that businesses make
with their websites — mistakes that lead to less site traffic, lost conversions, and ultimately,
reduced revenue.
To help you assess the strength of your website, we put together this guide covering
10 common business website mistakes, along with some tips on how to avoid
them. You’ll see examples of actual business website transformations from ReachLocal
clients who’ve used ReachEdge™, the powerful marketing system that combines a smart
website, lead management software, and a powerful mobile app to help businesses attract
more consumers to their sites and convert those visits into leads.
Take a look at 10 of the most common mistakes that businesses make to their websites and
then asses your website. Are you making any of these mistakes, too?
Try This, Not That: 10 Website Mistakes & How to Avoid Them Ebook
1) Website Mistake: Cluttered, Busy Home Page
Over 60% of the time, consumers who cannot immediately
find the information they need on a website will choose to
leave the site rather than keep looking.1
So, if you want prospective customers to stick around, make the most valuable information, like your phone
number, business hours, and list of services, as easy to find as possible. But if your home page is too busy and
cluttered with extraneous copy, images, or design elements, it can make it difficult for visitors to know where to
look or find the information they really need. If you think giving your website visitors “everything but the kitchen
sink” on the homepage is a good strategy, you’re probably overwhelming them with too much information.
------------------------------------- Air Conditioning Company Cuts the Clutter------------------------------------Before: This HVAC company’s original website was
heavy on the text and light on the visual appeal. And,
even though their phone number was present on their
old site, it wasn’t featured prominently on the page, so
visitors had a difficult time finding it. Taken in total, these
elements can turn off online visitors and cause them to
abandon the website, as seen in high bounce rates.
After: With their smart website, this business
broke free of copy- and image-clutter with
a clean design, which features customized
images that build credibility with visitors. Plus,
their ReachEdge team created search-optimized
copy about popular topics like “HVAC installation
and repair,” which helps the company be found
by consumers searching for these subjects. Result?
The business website now receives more targeted
traffic from motivated-to-buy consumers.
Online Marketing Institute
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 3 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Try This, Not That: 10 Website Mistakes & How to Avoid Them Ebook
2) Website Mistake: Too Little Copy
Although many sites are guilty of having too much copy cluttering their home page, other sites are guilty
of leaving out important information, like their location, hours of operation, address, service lines, or
other important details. It’s important to remember that the job of your website is to convince people to
contact you, otherwise, it won’t help you get more customers. Let’s look at how one small business website
transformed their sparse website by using ReachEdge.
---------------- Dental Practice Website Pops With the Right Balance of Content----------------
Before: This dental practice suffered from having a
bare-bones website. Not only can a lack of interesting
and helpful content be detrimental to a business’ ability
to get found in search engines, but it can also turn off
potential clients who do visit the website, leading to high
bounce rates and therefore low conversion rates.
After: This dental practice upgraded to a ReachEdge
website, which provides customized, search-friendly
content that appeals to and educates site visitors.
Engaging copy is key to getting site visitors to spend
more time on the website and helps convert them into
leads for the practice.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 4 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Try This, Not That: 10 Website Mistakes & How to Avoid Them Ebook
3) Website Mistake: No Clear Conversion Path
Did you know that 83% of people surveyed said they sometimes
leave a website because it takes too many clicks to get what
they want?2
And when that happens to people who visit your website, they’re probably not going to contact you.
You can fix this by emphasizing your desired conversion path as the most important thing on your website.
For example, if you want visitors to call you, promote your phone number in a large font at the top of your
homepage and on all of the pages on your site. This can substantially increase the amount of calls you get
from your potential customers. Sounds easy, but 60% of businesses are missing a primary conversion path
on their websites.3
--------------------------------- Concrete Company Optimizes for Conversions--------------------------------Before: Having too many items on the menu and
too many value propositions cluttered this concrete
company’s original website and confused their audience
about where to go or what to do next. The contact
information is difficult to find, which increases the
likelihood visitors will leave the site before contacting
the company.
After: Working with his ReachEdge project manager,
the business owner chose a layout from one of the many
professional themes offered in ReachEdge’s suite of
templates. His ReachEdge smart website now makes it
easy for consumers to know just where to look with a
simple, clean, and professional design. It also makes
the phone number the most important thing on the page
— because a call is what they really want from their
website visitors!
Online Marketing Institute
(555) 555-5555
(555) 555-####
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 5 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Try This, Not That: 10 Website Mistakes & How to Avoid Them Ebook
4) Website Mistake: Unstated Call to Action
Each conversion path should include a clear and concise call to action that instructs your website visitors what
the next step in their buying journey is. For example, “Call for a Free Quote,” is a popular call to action.
But, did you know that 70% of business websites don’t ask
visitors to take any action?4
It’s no wonder so many businesses are losing out on leads from their website visitors. You can redesign your
website to include a straightforward call to action. When you use a ReachEdge smart website, you can get
rid of this problem automatically, because each site includes an optimized call to action that you select.
----------------- Defense Attorney Appeals With Images & Strong Call to Action-----------------
Before: This legal practice’s website was too
boring, which can be a disadvantage when it
comes to an appealing online presence. Its contentheavy home page, which buried the call to action,
and lack of images were likely to send a visitor
straight to a competitor.
After: Their ReachEdge site offers a clean, professional
layout with an easy-to-find phone number and a
clear call to action — “Call Today for a Free Initial
Consultation.” Both elements are featured prominently at
the top of the page, which encourages potential clients
to call the firm to schedule an appointment.
Online Marketing Coach and Small Business Trends
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 6 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Try This, Not That: 10 Website Mistakes & How to Avoid Them Ebook
5) Website Mistake: Value Proposition Doesn’t Pop
The value proposition of your business is a key component for your website, because it tells each visitor
what you do and the benefit you offer. Plus, it sets you apart from your competitors. This focal-point
message should be easy to identify and work seamlessly with the overall content message. Your
ReachEdge project manager partners with you to craft the perfect value proposition based on your
business’ key values and goals.
----------------------------------- Veterinary Clinic Gets Streamlined Message-----------------------------------
Before: This veterinary clinic’s original website had a
lot going for it: colors that work well together, a great
team photo, an introductory video, and a social media
button linking the site to the clinic’s Facebook page.
These are all great elements for a site. But, the overall
design wasn’t fresh, the content was poorly organized,
and the website lacked a single, cohesive message for
current and potential clients.
After: With ReachEdge, this vet clinic’s website got a
professional upgrade that included a streamlined design
with crisp fonts and a single message that focuses only
on what matters most to clients and prospects. The
value proposition, “Where your pet’s health is our top
priority!” features prominently on the page but doesn’t
distract from the other areas of content.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 7 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Try This, Not That: 10 Website Mistakes & How to Avoid Them Ebook
6) Website Mistake: Unprofessional or Outdated Design
Does your website lack the right amount of copy or have too much? Is the layout static, incorporate too
many colors or fonts, or use Flash? If your website is dated, loads slowly, or includes bad design, then it
could be driving prospects away.
In fact, research shows that 85% of consumers abandon a
website due to poor design.5
Today’s consumers expect websites to be professional looking with the right amount information they need to
decide to do business with you.
---------------------------------------- Technical College Gets Updated Design---------------------------------------Before: While the design is a step in the right direction,
this website doesn’t have enough copy that Web visitors
would need to see. It lacks a clear call to action and
phone number at the top right of the page. The window
of opportunity to engage online visitors is brief; don’t
send them on a hunting expedition on your site to find
the information they need.
After: Using one of ReachEdge’s themes, this website
now has the right amount of information in the right
places. There’s a clear call to action, (“Enroll today!”),
a phone number at the top right, a clear value
proposition (“Education that works!”), and clear access
to details about the school. The visual also includes a
more representative sample of the student population,
rather than an image of just one student as shown in
the before example. With ReachEdge, your project
manager will work with you to craft the right messages
your website needs to engage visitors and encourage
them to contact you.
(555) 555-5555
Online Marketing Institute
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 8 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Try This, Not That: 10 Website Mistakes & How to Avoid Them Ebook
7) Website Mistake: No Secondary Conversion Path
A secondary conversion path like an email, contact form, or live chat technology helps you get conversions
from visitors who are unable to pick up the phone or want to contact you after business hours. It’s important
to optimize your website for these types of conversions as well.
A BIA/Kelsey report showed that almost 75% of small businesses
don’t even list an email address on their home page.6
---------- Auto Website Adds Secondary Conversion Path to Get More Contacts --------Before: This busy, dated website makes the phone
number difficult to find. Plus, there’s no secondary
conversion path like an email, contact form or live chat
options for online visitors to use. Secondary conversion
paths are important because they give visitors additional
options to contact you, which is important because
consumers aren’t always comfortable calling a company
this early in the sales process.
After: This ReachEdge website offers a fresh layout
that’s clean and easy to read and includes a consumercentric image. The bottom-right corner of the screen is
an example of live chat technology.* It’s an easy and
convenient way for consumers to ask questions about
your products and services from the comfort of their
home, office, or on the go. Capturing leads and contacts
this early in the buying process helps you to move your
customers one step closer to the final sale.
BIA/Kelsey 6
TotalLiveChat sold separately from ReachEdge.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 9 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Try This, Not That: 10 Website Mistakes & How to Avoid Them Ebook
8) Website Mistake: Lengthy Contact Forms
What information do you collect in your contact forms? How many questions are too many?
Studies have shown that website contact forms should only
be three to five fields in length.7
But many businesses try to collect too much information. This causes abandoned forms, because people
simply don’t want to take the time to fill them out. If your website is guilty of this problem, it’s important to use
as few fields as possible.
--------------------- Business School Changes Content Form to Short and Sweet --------------------
Before: The contact form on this site has ten
fields for an online visitor to fill out — that’s double
the maximum recommendation of five form fields.
Consumers today lead very busy lives and are
also easily distracted. So, don’t give them a
reason to leave your site prematurely because of
a contact form that’s too long.
After: The contact form on the school’s new
ReachEdge site has just four field sections: name,
phone, email address and comments. This falls within
the ideal amount of three to five fields. You want to
collect pertinent information from your leads, but you
don’t want to overwhelm them with too many fields.
Make sure your contact forms are short and sweet.
You can collect additional information from your
potential customer when you follow up with them.
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Try This, Not That: 10 Website Mistakes & How to Avoid Them Ebook
9) Website Mistake: No Mobile Site
Today, 76% of consumers surveyed use their smartphone to
access information about a local store they want to visit.8
This means your website needs to be optimized for mobile in addition to desktop viewing.
What are on-the-go consumers looking for? For starters, your address, phone number, hours of operation,
and maps or driving directions. By creating a mobile-friendly website with key features like a map and clickto-call functionality, you’re increasing your chances of being contacted by consumers who are looking for
businesses while on the go.
------------------------------------ Auto Website Gets Mobile-Friendly Update -----------------------------------
Before: Does your website look right on a mobile phone?
In this example, you see a website that isn’t designed to be
viewed on a smartphone. When loaded on a smartphone, the
information is cut off on the screen, which results in a poor user
experience for its prospects. They will most likely abandon any
further research about the website if they cannot read what’s on
their phone.
After: With this after example, the website is now mobilefriendly. The site is easily viewable on a smartphone screen;
no wording or images are cut off. With more than half (55%)
of mobile retail shoppers ultimately making a purchase,
mobile technology is increasingly gaining popularity among
consumers during the sales process.9 Having a mobilefriendly website is now more important than ever.
Local Corporation
Call Today
Nielsen, xAd, Telmetrics Mobile Path to Purchase study, 2013
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Try This, Not That: 10 Website Mistakes & How to Avoid Them Ebook
10) Website Mistake: Doesn’t Track Conversion Sources or Measure ROI
Do you know which marketing tactics are driving the most leads and customers to your business? Do you
know how many calls and form submissions you receive from online marketing efforts like SEO and social
media? Unless you ask leads how they found your business, you probably have no way to know. In addition,
one of the biggest problems businesses have when it comes to their websites — and their marketing in
general — is not being able to easily understand their return on investment.
-------------------------------------- Apartment Complex Tracks Lead Sources -------------------------------------
Interior advantages span from fabulous Tuscan
touches of rich slate and hard wood flooring,
Before: This site contains no back-end technology
that tracks where calls and clicks to it are coming from.
Not having this information puts the company at a
disadvantage, because the business owner doesn’t
know which online marketing efforts are effective, thus
increasing the chance of wasted marketing dollars.
oversized open concept floor plans, designer color
schemes, and gourmet kitchens with granite
countertops. Come experience city excitement,
suburbia style. Villas di Lucca… Upgrade yourself.
After: This ReachEdge website is equipped
with six tracking phone numbers that
automatically swap on the site based on the
visit’s marketing source: direct ads, organic
search, paid search, directories, social
media, and other sources. Thanks to this
tracking technology, the apartment complex
now knows which marketing programs are
driving the most visits and contacts to its
site. With this information, the company can
make better decisions on where to spend its
marketing dollars.
Tracking phone number
that’s directly related to each
marketing source.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 12 �������������������������������������������������������������������������������������
Website Mistakes &
How to Avoid Them
is, Not
Is your website a victim of some of these
common mistakes that could be costing you
customers? Learn how ReachEdge’s website
design options and lead tracking functionality
can attract more visitors to your website and
help you turn them into customers.
Call us at 866-978-9312 to learn more.
About Us
A global leader in online marketing, ReachLocal’s
(NASDAQ: RLOC) mission is to help local
businesses all over the world reach more local
consumers online. Through a combination of our
smart technology and sharp professionals, we
deliver services that get the results you need.
And, we do it all so you don’t have to.
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© 2013 ReachLocal. All Rights Reserved. No reproduction without permission. ReachEdge™ is a trademark of ReachLocal.