Is your website a little shop of horrors? Are there cobwebs on your home page and dust on your news pages? Are there audible creaks when people try to find their way around your crumbling old site? In short, is your website actually scaring the pants off visitors?
It may be Halloween but that’s no excuse for allowing your website to fester.
When visitors first arrive, they’re looking for someone they can trust — they don’t want to see Herman Munster or Morticia Adams! But if your website looks like a haunted house, they may not even knock on the door at all.
So what can you do to breathe life into your website?
Dust off your homepage
Visitors to your website want to know they are in the right place. Your homepage should reassure them and build trust, not scare them off with a cold blank zombie stare or a crumbling façade. Keep it simple and use your content to talk directly to customers, telling them how you can help.
Resuscitate your blog
If your blog has been neglected for months, it can look as though your business is dead and buried. A lifeless blog is like an old empty house — there are signs that there was life there once but now there’s an uneasy atmosphere. Where is everyone? And why has this place been abandoned? If your blog has that haunted feeling, most visitors will make a quick exit.
Bring your content out of the dark ages
Are your news stories so old they’re more like ghost stories? And is your homepage devoted to your illustrious history — not what you offer right now? Up-to-date content tells the world that you are actively engaged in your sector. In particular, customer-focused content — such as testimonials and case studies — demonstrate your credibility. Customers are easily scared off — so building trust is absolutely vital.
Get rid of any skeletons in your closet
Have you got any skeletons rattling around in your website? Out-of-date content? Poor quality images? Dodgy designs? Old prices? Broken links? If there’s one Halloween accessory you will need, it’s a good broom to sweep through your dusty old website.
Take off the spooky mask
OK, so your professional profile may not be spooky as such but if visitors can’t see the real you — a human being as well as an expert in your field — then you’re hiding behind a mask and that could intimidate them. Put the personal into your profile and use a good image of yourself on your website. Be open, share your contact details and connect on social media.
Ditch the hocus pocus
If your website is full of jargon that no-one but you understands you might as well as be spouting Harry Potter spells. Don’t use specialist terms if you can possibly help it. Instead, stick to plain English and adopt a friendly tone of voice that will inspire trust. Keep it simple — you are aiming to inform and inspire, not create an air of mystery. No-one has got time for mystery — if they don’t get it , they will leave your website and never come back.
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