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Beyond SEO: What Makes a Website Great

It seems that lately everyone’s been preaching about SEO (search engine optimization) and how it’s the key to a great website. And while it’s true that you want your website to rank highly on Google and in web searches, there’s more to a great website than just SEO.

Just last week, in a meeting with The Service Coach, Darion Miller and David Wigder got me thinking about other elements that are crucial to a company’s website success. One of the biggest takeaways from our chat centered around having a call to action. Whether that’s pointing visitors to some downloadable collateral or getting them to sign up for an upcoming webinar, getting them to engage is key.

If a visitor to your site engages with the company and is able to take something away with them to hold on to or can sign up for an event or newsletter, they have reason to remember you – more so than if they just came to your site, poked around and left, no matter how great they thought you were.

Ironically, Steve Slaunwhite’s Marketing Memo discusses this same topic today. Steve points out two things that every website must do:

  1. Get Prospects to Contact You
    According to Steve, this is called “conversion,” which is exactly what companies want their websites to achieve – converting an interested prospect into an email or phone call to chat about doing business. Making sure they can see all the services you offer and success you’ve had is important to make these prospects really feel that they’re looking in the right place.
  2. Capture Leads
    Steve notes that “80% of potential clients who visit your site are not in a position to hire you yet.” This may be because they either don’t have a need at that time or they were just hunting for more information for future needs. But, whatever the reason, you’ll want to get contact information from them to stay in touch and cultivate a relationship, especially as this group represents one of the best sources for new business. Having a sign-up form is a great way to capture this info, which is something The Service Coach also highly recommends.

 

I also found it interesting that about two-thirds of prospective clients will go to your website after hearing about you to check out your company before getting in touch. Even if they’ve learned about you from a trusted friend, they still want to validate your services. This is all the more reason to keep your website sharp and full of chances to engage!

What other elements do you think take a website from good to great?

This was first published on March Communications’ blog, PR Nonsense, by Meredith L. Eaton and may be viewed here.

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