Research indicates that visitors who have a bad experience with a business website tell 10 other people about it. So it’s crucial that customers who come to your small business or B2B website – for the first time or the tenth time – enjoy the experience, or at least come away with no significant complaints.
Here are four ways to improve your customers’ website experience and convert them into loyal fans of your business.
#1 Make navigation logical and user-friendly. Maneuvering through your website should always be a logical, common-sense process – based on your customers’ needs and desires, not the structure of your business. The website’s menu must be prominently displayed and easy to read and understand. Visitors should be able to locate information on products, prices, methods of payment and return policies at a glance.
To assess your website’s navigational quality, try visiting the site as a trusted customer might or, better yet, enlist the services of friends or colleagues who haven’t been there before. Their feedback may be very helpful in identifying little navigational obstacles that are easy to fix.
#2 Focus on speed. Think about how impatient you get when you click on a website that seems to take forever to load. That’s how visitors feel if the contents of your site load slowly. KISSmetrics, a blog about analytics, marketing and testing, offers some eye-opening facts about loading speed:
- 47% of consumers expect a website to load in two seconds or less
- 40% abandon a website that takes more than three seconds to load
- A one-second delay decreases customer satisfaction by about 16%
Make sure your website hosting service can establish a connection and get the page up immediately – or risk prospective customers abandoning the site before they’ve had a chance to look it over.
#3 Clearly post contact and product information. Visitors shouldn’t have to search for contact information, including a phone number and email address for customer service inquiries. Optimized high traffic websites with calls to action to contact your business for more information.
#4 Be generous with product and service information. Unlike a brick-and-mortar experience, potential customers can’t touch your product or experience your service. Share all the information you can to guide them toward the purchasing decision – including, as appropriate, details about product availability, colors, sizes and shapes, etc. Feature at least one (but preferably more) photographs, giving visitors a better sense of what they’re about to buy. For B2B firms selling intangible services, detailing the process of your services, common questions and pricing can help inform the customer before picking up the phone.
One more product information tip: Offer an FAQ page with answers to the most commonly-asked questions. You’ll save visitors (and your own employees) a lot of time by covering most of the bases there.
According to KISSmetrics, 79% of shoppers who are dissatisfied with website performance are less likely to buy from the same website again. There’s a lot riding on how well your site meets (or exceeds) customer expectations. It’s well worth the time and effort to get things right.