“You might not need a new website.” There, we said it.
As a digital marketing agency, whose portion of their business revolves around developing websites, writing this post almost feels like blasphemy. Don’t misunderstand us, we feel strongly that there is a basic, essential need for every business to have an effective website.
(Disclaimer: If your website hasn’t been touched in a number of years, you probably do need a new one. There’s a lack of credibility that unfortunately comes with having a completely antiquated website.)
Pretty pictures don’t equal conversions.
But we’ve come across many businesses that feel the need to redesign and redevelop their website just because it isn’t being the top salesperson for their company they thought it would be, or because they don’t feel it’s the most cutting edge version it could be. They want the most current design, a whole new look and feel, and maybe if they just showcase more of their personality on the site, people will pick up the phone and do business with them.
Well actually, no, that’s usually not how it works.
Unless you’re one of the 22% of businesses that are satisfied with their website’s conversions, you’re looking for more. And if that’s the case, a ‘prettier’ version of your website won’t always be the fix. What you need is a funnel.
While a website may aim to accomplish many goals, a funnel has one goal: to convert visitors on a specific offer.
Focus is key.
Ever heard of “voluntary simplicity”? While things like minimalism and capsule wardrobes may just sound like a trendy millennial movement, there’s actually something to it. Having less choices, less clutter and fewer things vying for your attention naturally leads to less stress, can make people happier, and (what we’re most interested in) allows the individual to be more focused. Focus is key when it comes to someone sticking around on your site long enough to realize the true value you have to offer and to take action on one specific thing.
Picture this: A prospect arrives at your website. Their eyes scan the screen. There’s a top navigation menu that can take them a dozen or more places right off the bat. They might decide to learn more about your company or the many products or services you offer. They’ll take note of how easy (or difficult) it might be to get in touch with you. Now they’re distracted by the beautiful photos of your team, checking out upcoming events, reading blog posts, etc. Not to mention the countless other links to social platforms, special offers and more, begging for just a moment of their short attention-span.
Your first thought might be, “Wow! I would love to have a visitor checking out every page of my website and learning more about who we are!” And if your goal was just for a prospect to know about you, it would be a success. But a real conversion would be much more valuable. We want to see a specific goal accomplished; whether it’s a form fill, email submission, phone call, or maybe even a purchase.
Limit choices, increase conversions.
By limiting people’s choices, you’re actually increasing your conversion rates. We looked at multiple studies on removing header navigation done by Hubspot, Yuppiechef, Career Point College, SparkPage and more, and while percentage of increase varied, it was still always that – an increase. Hubspot’s increased percentages on middle of funnel content, such as a demo or free trial showed as much as a 28% lift in conversions. Yuppiechef and Career Point College both increased conversions by 100% and more!
The beauty of a funnel is in its simplicity, focus, and sophistication. As opposed to walking your prospect into a room with 100 doors and asking them to choose one to walk through (like your website is doing), when someone comes into your funnel, you are walking them into a room, and in that room they have just one door to walk through. The choice is simple! They can take a specific action, or leave.
Fortunately, even if they choose to leave, it doesn’t mean you’ve lost them forever. Because, retargeting. And while it’s true you can retarget from your website as well, the fact that your funnel is so specific means you can segment this visitor as having an interest in that very specific area of your business.
No ‘spray and pray’ marketing, just marketing that works.
Your marketing strategy becomes laser focused on those who are actually interested in what you have to offer when you take the funnel route. And the most exciting part is that implementing your funnel can simply be a matter of integrating with your current website and marketing systems.
One day, you will have to spend your marketing dollars on a brand new website. But we’re here to tell you, that day might not have to be today. Our advice is to create a system that funnels your audience into a specific offer, where you have a higher chance of conversion, and then follow up with them until you make the sale. Bonus points if this system is largely automated!
Now THAT’S effective, time and money saving marketing. And that’s something we can all get behind.