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In my previous post, I discussed how one’s website is the product that online marketing efforts attempt to “sell.” That is, the goal of online marketing is to drive traffic to a website. This, of course, then begs the question of how this helps a business. Simply put, this helps a business by showcasing their website and enabling the business to reap the benefits that they deserve from the website that they have. Thus, we have an important question to ask: How good is your website?

Your website, not the online marketing efforts surrounding it, is what visitors will use to determine whether or not they will use your services. As a result, I would venture to say that the quality of your website will affect your business’ bottom line more than any other part of your online presence. Yes, it’s true that the upcoming generation will look at and like social media pages, but it’s still largely the case that people will not make purchases from social media. It’s the problem that Facebook is trying to solve, but a solution hasn’t manifested itself yet. This is why it is important to have a link to your website on all of your social media pages: Your website is what you’re trying to provide to people through your online marketing efforts!

From this standpoint, you can see just how important your website is: It is the focus point for all of your online marketing efforts, so when visitors get to it, you need to capitalize on your website in order for your online marketing efforts to have been worthwhile. This means having a website that can convert the interest that you have generated in your website into interest in your real-world product. This requires more than just a pretty website with some contact information on it. A strong value proposition is key to getting people interested in your product, and in the online world, your website is your opportunity to get that interest.

So, ask yourself: What sense do you get about your company when you look at a given page on your website? Because of the nature of search, you need to identify the impressions that each single page on your website makes individually as well as collectively, because each page on your website is a potential entrance to your website. Is it laid out in an attractive manner? Is it perfectly clear what I can do on the webpage and on your website? Is the content on the site well-written? Do I get the impression that you are writing content just to impress a GoogleBot? These are all things that a visitor will subconsciously ask themselves as they navigate your website, and it doesn’t take much for them to lose interest and leave without having been converted into a customer.

If your website is getting lots of visitors but isn’t converting very well, the issue must lie in one of two places. First, there could be cognitive disconnect occurring between the perception a visitor has of your company before looking at your website and the perception they have while on your website. Thus, you need to make sure that your website matches your online marketing efforts in look, feel, and content, and vice versa. Second, your website could not be making a clear call to action and value proposition, or is doing so in a way which does not entice people to participate. In the first case, you have a branding problem, and need to either get your website up to speed with your online marketing, or bring your online marketing techniques in line with your website. In the second case, you have either a web design or a web content issue.

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