Imagine this, if you will…
You’ve done it: achieved the pinnacle of social media success.
Your insightful commentary, careful curation and witty repartee has finally convinced your dream client that you’re The One!
They beat a hasty path to your
front door website. They’re enthused and excited, eager to work with you, clutching a credit card in one sweaty hand…
Then they stop dead in their tracks.
This website… where’s the…? But how do I…? What the…? AARRGGHH!!!
Hear that? That’s the sound of your dream client clicking away to another website.
/imaginary time over.
Sigh. So close.
Bounce rate, and why it matters
In real life, this probably happens more often than you think.
In fact, you can get an idea of just how often by checking your bounce rate in your website’s analytics.
This represents the number of people who arrive at your site but then leave it again fairly quickly.
In other words, someone may have entered a question into a search box and your site was selected by the search engine gods as a likely candidate to answer their question (yes!! that thing we’re always trying to achieve with SEO!! It’s happened!!!). That someone then selected your site above all the other results that appeared, and when they got to your site…
… Nope. They left again.
Or, intrigued by your magnetic social presence, they clicked through to your website to check you out some more. Only…
… Nope. You’ve lost them again.
Now, there are many valid reasons why your site may not be what a searcher is looking for. (And you may need to consider your messaging if your site consistently attracts the wrong kind of visitors).
But there are many more reasons why your site COULD and SHOULD have been exactly that, with just a little tweaking.
All the social success in the world means nothing if your site sucks (and I’m not even talking about design).
How can we make sure this doesn’t (continue to) happen to you?
We’ve come a long way from the idea of your website being akin to an online shopfront.
These days, people equate their experience of a website as a seamless extension of their interactions with YOU.
We’re talking shop front, entrance, front desk, waiting area, consultation room, back office AND exit here.
This doesn’t necessarily mean you need a fancy website. It doesn’t even mean your site has to be the prettiest on the block.
What it does mean – for our purposes today, at least – is that your site content and basic structure needs to meet the expectations of your ideal potential client, regardless of which stage they are at in their buyer journey.
Think of it like this:
If your social media activities are tasty little bread crumbs you leave for your ideal clients, you need to make sure those bread crumbs lead up to, in to and right through your front door.
So how do you achieve this without a billion-dollar budget?
Here’s what I suggest (even with a billion-dollar budget):
- Make a list of all the questions your ideal potential client might have in mind when they visit your website. Draw on your own experience of online shopping or browsing for service providers to help you.
Is this person in my price range? How do I know she’s any good? How do I know she’s not just going to fleece me? Do I even really want to hire a translator? I like what I see but I don’t want to contact him until I’m ready to go ahead – how can I find out more without having to email him? – that sort of thing.
- Next, make a list of all the potential actions your ideal buyer might take while engaging with your website.
For example, checking your About page to get a sense of who you are, finding your social media profiles to get more of a sense of who you are, signing up to your email newsletter to learn even more about who you are, and finally, maybe, eventually, sending you an email.
- Now, put yourself in your buyer’s shoes and see what you can do to make the process as simple, clear and streamlined as possible.
How easy is it to find answers to those questions, to take those key actions? How much text do they have to trawl through to get to what they need? How many clicks does it take to get to the most important (for them) information on your site? How can you streamline, polish or otherwise simplify their journey as buyers? What information can you add, remove, or otherwise improve?
There you have it. Imaginary tales, breadcrumb trails and brick-and-mortar analogies, all in one sweet, sweet blog post. Only here, my friends. Only here 🙂
A Social Media Challenge!
Your mission, should you chose to accept it, is to do one thing each day in October that will have an impact on your social presence in the longer term.
Each weekday in October, I’m going to suggest a task to work on for whatever pocket of time you can carve out that day. You can choose to follow my suggestion, adjust it to suit your circumstances, or come up with an alternative – whatever makes most sense for you. Or just dip in and out as it suits.
Follow along on Twitter, Facebook, or here on the blog. Let me know how you’re getting on by using the hashtag #socialtranslator (so I can find you!). If you find it helpful, please give me a thumbs up, a like or a share – that’s how I’ll know you’re finding it useful, and it’ll help other translators join in too.