DIY Web: Keep the Customer in Focus

If you really must build your own website, focus on the customer

Customer Focus
There are a number of good reasons why as a business owner you should seriously consider hiring a professional to create your website.  I won’t go into them here but instead highlight a customer focused approach that the professional will have and that you should adopt if you’re building your own website. In this post you will learn how to design your website for the benefit of your customers first and as a result of doing that well, gain rewards for your business.

Think like your ideal customer

Lets say you’ve come up with a fabulous business idea that stems from your experience and skills. You’ve already gone through the hard work of setting it up from scratch and can consider it as a prize possession.  You’ve seen the need to build a website and intend to save money by building it yourself.  Like anything else that you own, you may want it to reflect your personality.  But rather than concentrate on telling visitors the story of your journey into business and choosing your favourite colours, be mindful of what potential customers want. Put yourself in the shoes of an ideal customer seeking a service like yours or a product you sell.  Consider what they will be looking to see when they visit your site for the first time that will compel them to buy from you instead of another business.  The visitor will take just a few seconds to make the decision whether to stay and browse or click Back!

A customer focused home page

So lets concentrate on your home page.  In particular the top section ‘before the scroll’.  Like a newspaper which is often displayed to customers folded so that only the top half of the front page is visible, editors will place items ‘above the fold’ that will entice people to buy the paper.

Sell the benefits for the customer

  • Make very clear what it is you are offering.  Seek to give the visitor confirmation that they have come to the right place.

Be approachable

  • Prominently display a phone number that they can use to contact you right away.  Also have the links to your social networks on show.

Show the customer the way

  • Invite the visitor to engage immediately with bold buttons and clear calls to act.
  • Present clear navigation options in a well structured menu.  Too many links on display will tend to confuse.

Easy reading and enticing

  • Keep text to bite-sized chunks under concise headings and where necessary provide a link to read more.
  • Ensure text passages are easy to read, free from spelling mistakes and grammatical errors.
  • Make it flow like easy conversation. If you find it difficult to read it will be very off putting for those reading for the first time.

Express your message through images

  • Use images that support the associated text and avoid unexplained isolated pictures.

These are some things to be borne in mind when laying out your customer focused website.  Keep things under review by monitoring analytics, listening to customer feedback and the level of business and enquiries. No two businesses are the same, so its up to you to take a view on what will work best. With some experimentation and a focus on the customer’s experience, you can achieve positive results.

Share your thoughts

If you are building your own website and looking for ways to make your home page compelling for your customers, contact me for a chat.

Or drop your ideas in a comment below.

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