If you’re like many business owners, you find yourself wondering if your website is contributing to your business in a meaningful way.
When a business website is optimized to attract prospects, capture leads, and increase sales, there is no doubt about the impact it has on your bottom line. If you have any doubts at all, that’s an obvious sign that something is wrong and needs to be fixed asap.
Here are five web strategies that will help you turn the ship around. I also include a few recommended WordPress plugins that make adding each feature a snap.
1. Turn your visitors into newsletter subscribers by adding an email subscription box to your website.
Despite the popularity of social media, email remains the most effective channel for marketing a business online. Email response rates are an order of magnitude higher than response rates on Facebook and Twitter.
The ugly truth about the web is that your website visitors are here today and gone in seconds — possibly never to return. You can make the most of even a small amount of web traffic by encouraging your visitors to sign-up for your mailing list (and giving them a good reason to do so).
Of course, you’ll need a mailing list to get started. MailChimp is a great option, and it’s free for the first 2,000 subscribers.
The Easy MailChimp Forms plugin allows you to add subscription forms anywhere on your website. The plugin also pulls valuable list and subscriber data into your WordPress dashboard, so you can follow your list growth and see which messages are getting the best response.
Warning: This should go without saying, but I’ll say it anyway just to be clear. Don’t be a spammer! Send only relevant emails, and don’t bombard your subscribers with too many messages. Remember, the people who sign-up for your list have given you permission to stay in touch. Don’t abuse that privilege!
2. Use a strong call to action to encourage visitors to take action.
A call to action urges visitors to do the thing you most want them to do when they come to your website. That might be subscribing to your mailing list, downloading a white paper, or buying your product. Unfortunately, many business websites lack a clear call to action. Even when a call to action is present, it’s frequently easy to miss.
Magic Action Box allows you to create beautifully designed feature boxes that look great and help your call to action stand out. The plugin is flexible enough to support multiple feature boxes in different areas of your site. I use Magic Action Box on WP Apprentice to encourage visitors to sign-up for my free WordPress Quick Start course.
3. Create landing pages optimized for conversion.
A landing page is a webpage that’s designed to encourage visitors to take one specific action. As a result, landing pages look unlike the rest of your website. For example, landing pages have no global navigation.
If landing pages sound a lot like the Magic Action Boxes, that’s because the intent is similar. The difference is that Magic Action Boxes integrate with the pages on your site, while a landing page stands alone.
You’ll use a landing page as the destination for an advertising campaign (pay per click or social) or an email campaign. Landing pages are also a common destination for traffic generated by affiliates.
OptimizePress is, by far, the best landing page creator for WordPress. It’s a flexible marketing tool that can be used as either a plugin or a theme (in other words, you won’t have to change your theme to use OptimizePress). All OptimizePress pages are mobile-friendly and optimized (get it?) to encourage your users to take action.
You can use OptimizePress to create:
- Product sales pages
- Webinar sign-up pages
- Free trial offers
- Thank you pages
4. Sell from your website.
This one is a no-brainer. If you want to use your WordPress website to increase sales, start selling from your website.
eCommerce used to be hard (and expensive), but with plugins like WooCommerce, anyone can sell directly from their website.
WooCommerce is more than a plugin. It’s a flexible eCommerce system that supports physical products, digital products, shipping calculations, tax tables, and inventory control. With the help of WooCommece extensions, the plugin supports just about any sales model you can dream up. And because WooCommerce is so affordable, you don’t have to break the bank doing it.
To say WooCommerce is a popular eCommerce platform is an understatement. According to the latest data from BuiltWith, over 24% of all eCommerce sites on the entire internet are using WooCommerce.
5. Start blogging about issues that are important to your customers (and would-be customers).
This one is so easy that you won’t need a plugin. Blogging is part of WordPress’s DNA.
Every day I hear from business owners who are looking for an SEO secret sauce that will magically catapult their website to the top of Google and bring a hoard of prospects to their front door.
The best SEO tip simple: create quality content that people want to read. Use your website as a platform to help solve your customer’s most pressing problems, answer common questions, publish tutorials, tell interesting stories, help people!
Writing about topics your customers want to know more about is a sure-fire way to bring more visitors to your website. And more visitors means more sales.
So, how are you using WordPress to improve your business? Leave a comment below to let me know.