Given the number of websites on the internet, you obviously need yours to stand out from the crowd if you want people to visit it. If you follow these 4 simple yet essential steps and you will ensure that your visitors hang around for longer and more importantly, return time and time again.
DESIGN Once you have a customer visit your site you obviously want to keep them there. To do this you need to ensure that they can straight away see something that relates to why they went to your site in the first place. Information and images need to be very clear and concise - do not include unneccessary information. That being said you need to ensure that you include all relevant information and as long as it is relevant and interesting you can inlclude a lot of information here. All links to other pages need to be easily visible so that the customer can navigate to these pages to get any additional information. If you are inlcluding an opt-in box, make this above the fold on the page as this will increase your opt-ins if they do not have to scroll down. It is always a good idea to include a second opt-in box at the bottom of the page to pick up anyone who has read through your entire page.
KNOW YOUR CUSTOMER If you are marketing online, your website if effectively your shop or store front. It needs to look professional. One good way to get feedback on your website it to have a comments or suggestions box on the page. You can also send out an email to your list of clients with a brief survey for them to complete. Make sure this is short as you will not have many replies if it is too onerous. The sorts of questions you would include are: "How did you find my page?", "What do you like about our page?", "What do you want to see added to our page?" etc etc. Offer a free gift of product for their time and you will triple the number of replies. Also offer incentives to existing customers to turn them into repeat buyers.
YOUR CONTACT DETAILS AND BIO Your customers want to know that they are dealing with a real person so make sure you have a link to a Bio page that gives them some background information about your and your hobbies and interests. Also ensure that you have a professional looking contact page with as many contact methods as possible, including email, phone, fax, post, facebook, twitter. Different people prefer different methods and you will possibly be marketing worldwide so ensure that your phone has a message service so that your customers can leave their details for you to call them back. Include a response time on your website for general enquiries and ensure you stick to it to maintain customer service.
PAYMENT OPTIONS As mentioned above, your marketplace may be world wide so you need to provide as many payment options as possible. That being said you need to protect yourself so only offer the following methods as they are seemed safe and used worldwide: Credit card processors such as SWREG, PayPal or Clickbank if you are promoting digital products.
Good luck and happy designing.