I had an eye opening moment one year ago, almost to the day. I was curious about how effective my website was at engaging visitors. What better way to determine that, than to see how long people stayed when they landed on my site. The numbers were shocking! Nearly 85% of my site’s visitors didn’t stay for more than eight seconds! Eight measly seconds.
Do you get how bad that is? That is the same as inviting a guest over for a nice dinner and drinks, and when you open the door to greet them, they look at you, smile and say “It was great seeing you. I gotta run. Have a great night. Oh, and I’ll never be back.” Ahh! They didn’t even get to taste that delicious homemade apple pie I baked. It’s my specialty you know.
Now, imagine that scenario again. This time the doorbell rings, I open the door wearing a tuxedo with a maid and butler at my side. And the butler has a fresh, steaming slice of apple pie for my guest to sample. I suspect my visitor would have something new to say. “Whoa… what’s going on here? You know I had to run, but holy cow, apple pie a la mode?!? I’m staying!”
That is exactly what I did for my website, and you can do for yours. I made the simple and inexpensive changes to make my site distinguished. Mow those eight five percenters are staying for an average of one minute and three seconds. That is equivalent to eating two slices of apple pie in web time. And the rest of my visitors? They are averaging almost five minutes. That’s effectively a sleep over!
Here is how you make your site distinguished, and have people really digging in:
- Real Pictures And Lots Of Them – Ditch the stock photography, and post real pictures of you and your employees. But don’t use your favorite headshot from highschool (even though you are in your fifties now), instead use a variety of current photos. The more variety of great shots of you and your team, the more you will become a mini-celebrity in your prospect’s eyes. Talk about being distinguished.
- Have Your Own Distinct Voice – People relate to others who are like them. Most people aren’t watered down and boring (Are you? I didn’t think so!), so how come so many sites are? Have your site be consistent with your own natural voice and style. The goal here isn’t to make everyone happy (you can’t). The goal is to make the right people to feel a connection with you.
- Always Be Blogging – Forget the ABC’s of business, start doing the ABB’s (Always Be Blogging). Blogs have lost their cache over the years, ironically making them more influential. As less people blog, your blog will get even better SEO. Just make sure you maintain your distinct voice, and speak about the industry you’re in and what you do.
- Let The People Speak – Let your following (web visitors) share their voice too. Enable commenting on your blogs, and respond to the comments people post. Use tools like MediaRoomVIP that allow you to pose a question to your community and have it automatically compile their responses into a blog post. Hey look at that, there’s that blogging again!
- Integrated Social Media – Twitter. Facebook. LinkedIn. Youtube. The list goes on and on. All these social media platforms are powerful ways for your web visitors to keep attuned to your goings on. The problem is they are all over the place. Used widgets or plugins to integrate your social media directly onto your site. Now people can stay on your site while seeing all the stuff you are tweeting about simultaneously.
- Give Me Some Variety – Pictures and text are mandatory for a good website, but you shouldn’t stop there. Add videos, podcasts, infographics, social media feeds, live chats, group video conferences, along with the pictures and text to keep things fresh. It offers a great way to repurpose content (e.g. a video can be redone into an infographic), and it surely makes your site distinguished
by Mike Michalowicz