Category Archives: Business

Successful relationships and business growth

Most businesses are online but there is a big difference to being online and being a successful online business. Having a strategy is a good step to help grow a business.

 

There are three important objectives for any online business: Traffic, Relationships and Conversions.

 

Driving traffic to a site isn’t an easy task.  Popular keywords can be expensive and don’t always guarantee a ROI, writing endless realms of copy or collecting large numbers of social media followers may not generate results quickly. It’s often easier to develop better relationships with the customers you already have.

 

Website owners often focus on the business needs but can overlook the needs of their customers. Don’t think of your customers as an amorphous mass, break them into specific groups or segments and list why they’re coming to your site. What does the site do to fulfill their needs? Are there any gaps? Is there anything further you can be do to improve your offer.

 

Conversions and successful visits

 

A successful visit can mean many things to many businesses. It may be a sale, a download, collecting a mailing address, a sign up for social media or a new lead.

 

List all your successful goals and prioritise them. What is your ideal conversion rate for each of these goals? It’s not easy to set a target conversion rate, but consider what the business needs to drive leads, subscriptions, sales and ultimately to increase profits. Try to be specific about the actual conversion and the rate you want. Outline how you plan to achieve it and when by. This is where your strategy will start to get really interesting.

 

If one of your goals is to increase sign up, plan how you can attract more customers to sign up. This isn’t always about driving traffic into your site but working with the customers you already have. Optimising the user experience around goals is often more effective than driving traffic.

 

Think strategically about your site, understand your customers and what they want to achieve. Monitor and measure conversion rates for those key goals. Set strong conversion targets and develop a plan to attain those targets.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Are your customers getting what they want?

As a product owner or site designers you are responsible for guiding your site visitors and helping them to achieve their goals.

To do this you need to know why your customers are coming to your site. This isn’t always that obvious – I’ve been working with a finance company and they thought their customers were coming to take out loans. This wasn’t entirely true and the bulk of their customers were actually visiting the site to research about loans.

If you know what customers want then make it easy for them to find this information and achieve their tasks.

If you’re not clear who your customers are and what they want. Then there are some simple things you can do to help inform your judgment.

  1. Firstly this is obvious but ask them. Run a simple site survey. There are a lot of tools available which can help you with this.
  2. It’s worth mentioning that you’re not going to get everyone filling in the survey and it will be biased to a certain type of person. That said it’s a good starting point.
  3. Check your site analytics and work out what your customers are doing on your site. Analytics can be very time consuming, but there are some simple stats which are worth checking. What are your top landing pages, popular pages and what products are selling the most.
  4. What search terms are people using to find your site.
  5. Check your internal search to understand what customers are looking for and also the language that they use.
  6. If your business has access to a call centre, see if you can spend some time talking to the operatives and listening in on the calls. Find out what are the most popular questions or requests.
  7. Do you have direct access to customers, talk to them and find out as much as you can about what motivates them to buy your products.

By gathering the information you’ll start to get a better understanding of who your customers are and what they need from you. With this to hand you can start to understand what it is your customers need and how you can create a site that helps your customer achieve their goals.