The internet is a glorious thing, connecting consumers with providers that can fill their needs. E-commerce is a booming, trillion-dollar industry, and every entrepreneur wants their share of the pie.
To take advantage of this network as a business owner, you need to ensure your target market easily sees your website.
When it’s created and optimized fully, your business website can reach potential customers from around the world. However, so can all of your competitors’ sites.
So how do you get your business to stand out from the crowd?
The key is to use these essential tricks that most companies forget about including on their site.
1. Know Your Target Market
As you design your website, are you including features that you like or things you know your target audience prefers? There could be a massive disconnect between what you think they want and what they do.
Before you spend countless hours and resources building your site, consider investing a little time and money to do some research. Sites like Amazon’s Mechanical Turk and SurveyMonkey connect you to your target market. From there, you can design a survey that acts as a field test, similar to what major corporations use when they’re coming up with a new ad or product.
Use the opinions you get from your survey to design your website further. Then, you’ll know that you’re covering your audience’s preferences.
2. Research the Competition
How can you make your website “stand out” if you don’t know what the rest of the crowd looks like?
Surfing the web for your competition is a crucial step. When you know what they offer, you can use what works and adjust what makes your business different.
For instance, on one of your competitor’s sites, you see the design is set up in a way that makes everything intuitive. You want yours to be user-friendly, too, so you refer back to their site for ideas instead of starting from scratch.
You notice other ways to improve some sites, so you remember to step up those areas on your own page.
Watch for how they are trying to do the same thing you are, standing out from other businesses. You may realize that there are a few things you offer that no one else does. Those are the niche features you’ll want to promote the most.
3. Offer Useful Freebies
We’re all used to pop-ups showing up every time we open a website. There’s a fine line between “helpful” and “annoying” at this point.
These pop-ups obviously work, or millions of businesses wouldn’t be using them actively. They’re one of the main funnel methods you’ll use to accumulate an email list, otherwise known as your gold mine of potential customers.
As you decide what to use in the first funnel your viewers see, keep in mind that you need to get their attention immediately. Otherwise, they’ll click out of the box and move on.
What you offer should be useful and (preferably) free. Make it tempting enough that it’s worth them giving you their email address. Let them know you won’t spam them with junk, either.
4. Keep Your Site Fresh and Updated
Your site’s appearance reflects on your business as a whole. If it’s outdated and boring, you’re going to lose a lot of customers.
Surfers today want a customized, interactive interface when they visit a site. The problem with this isn’t in how you build it, although that can get complex. The main issue is that when you load your site with the graphics and videos that grab the audience’s attention, you’ve bogged down the loading time.
Since most users will only wait 3 – 5 seconds for a site to load before leaving, this is a major concern for independent developers.
If you’re concerned that your site is outdated or has been unresponsive, Interweb has some suggestions to boost your analytics—and the success of your business.
5. Choose Your Voice and Use it Well
Think about some of the largest companies you know. What’s their overall “voice” or brand?
McDonald’s renovated theirs recently to make a friendly voice that focuses on saving you time in the day. Geico is known for its fun-loving lizard (ahem, gecko), showing customers that working with the insurance company will be easy and laid back but professional.
What voice do you want to project to your target market? The best one to use is your natural personality. Create a brand and voice that showcases your values and ideas.
Don’t bow down to peer pressure. Your creative differences will make you stand out. After all, it worked for Chick-fil-a, didn’t it?
In a cookie-cutter world, it’s easy to get lost in the crowd of millions of business websites. Getting yours to stand out isn’t easy, but it’s worth the time and effort you’ll put into it. These tricks will turn your site from ho-hum to creative and exciting.
An author of Namaste UI, published several articles focused on blogging, business, web design & development, e-commerce, finance, health, lifestyle, marketing, social media, SEO, travel.
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