More and more consumers every year are choosing a completely digital experience for making purchase decisions. Because of this, many businesses are working hard to shift to the online sales and marketing. However, many brands that market online are underestimating the importance website design in their marketing.
When the focus of your digital marketing is fixed on getting traffic to your site you may find that, while you are getting increased traffic, this traffic has a high bounce rate and is not leading to increased sales or conversions. This can significantly impact your return on investment. That is why it is important to understand the role your website plays in each phase of the marketing funnel.
Phase 1 – Viewers
Viewers are visitors that have never visited your website or engaged with your brand before. For the sake of breaking down numbers, we will say that 100% of site visitors began as viewers. Although many first-time visitors will likely have reached your site by way of direct traffic, we should assume that a visitor in this phase has never heard of your business. They may not have any idea what you do. Generally, these visitors will land on the home page.
While it is tempting to try out clever headlines and slogans that may mean a lot to customers that are familiar with your brand, it is usually best for most businesses to opt for a clear visual and textual message that concisely conveys what you do. While words are important, keep in mind that less can often be more.
Images can be very instrumental in delivering your message; just be careful to use images that make sense and are visually pleasing. Most importantly, make sure those images are sized appropriately. They should be large enough to look crisp and clear but optimized to load quickly on average internet connections and most modern web browsers.
Your goal with viewers is to introduce your business. With the right design considerations, it should be easy to move roughly 80% of those viewers down the funnel to the the next phase.
Phase 2 – Interest
Users that come back a second time probably saw a retargeting ad or an ad on social media and now they are interested in learning more. A good web designer takes that user into special consideration. It should be easy to find the things they are looking for and clearly.
Images can be very instrumental in delivering a brand message at this phase of the funnel. Just be careful to choose images that make sense and are visually pleasing. Most importantly, make sure those images are sized appropriately. They should be large enough to look crisp and clear but optimized to load quickly on average internet connections and most modern web browsers.
Phase 3 & 4 – Questions & Discussion
At this phase of the funnel, the user is probably seriously considering your product or service. it is important to make sure it is easy for them to ask questions or talk to a representative. Your website should have easy-to-find contact information. Phone numbers should stand out and be clickable. Requests for more information should be simple and easy to find and your forms should work. If you have a Live Chat, make sure it remains open and operational during business hours.
Phase 5 – Purchase
Lastly, your website should make it super easy to complete the purchase or sale process. If you take payments online, the website should be secure. The less clicks you present to your buyers during the sale process, the better. Checkout and View Cart buttons should be clearly visible on the screen at any point in the checkout process.
Now you understand the basics on how design and user experience impacts the sales process from a consumer standpoint. It may just take a few simple changes to your website to ensure the best possible experience for your users, regardless of where they are in the consumer journey.