In the second addition to the “Design Your Website to Increase Sales” series we will talk about the design of your website.
When you design your website it can seem overwhelming at first, but with the right tools you can create an effective website that draws in your favorite customers while working to increase your sales. Whether you are just starting to create your website from scratch or you want to implement a couple tricks to increase your sales on your site then this post is for you.
As an online business, your website will work for you 24/7, 365 days a year and that means even while you sleep. What makes the world of online selling so incredible is that we can put in the initial work and our websites will serve our customers constantly without our undivided attention.
Selling online opens up more opportunities than having solely a brick and mortar business model. Since we rely only on our website to be our #1 hub for our online businesses, the proper care and attention will truly pay off in the end.
Now that you’ve learned how to create an intentional and authentic brand design (in the 1st post in this series), it’s time to put it all together on your website. This all about using your brand imagery to create a clear and focus path for your customers.
Design Your Website to Increase Sales: Designing your homepage with purpose
Let’s start at the one of the most important parts of your website – your homepage or landing pages. These pages are the ultimate first impressions that your potential customers will have of you and your brand. It take about 2 seconds for your website viewers to make a decision whether they want to stay on your site or leave. Creating a clear, purposeful design here will keep them sticking around more and more.
“Create a clear, purposeful homepage design to keep customers sticking around on your site“
Since a decision to stay on your site or leave happens extremely quickly, make sure that your most vital information is above the fold. This means above the page before you have to start scrolling. You want your visitors to immediately know what they should do and where they should click right when they stumble upon your site. Be sure to check all different types of screen sizes so you can optimize your most important content.
These pages are prime real estate for your brand, so make sure every single element has a clear purpose. The purpose can be aesthetics but don’t let this be the main focus here. It’s best that every element isn’t there only for looks but instead to guide your potential customers through your online brand experience. Good design doesn’t just look pretty, it also functions like a boss.
If you are making tweaks to your site or building it from scratch, go through each element you’ve placed on your homepage and ask yourself what purpose it has. Eliminate what isn’t serving the space and remember that less is always more when you design your website.
Avoiding clutter on your homepage will truly make a difference in keeping your potential customers glued to your site. You may feel the need to throw everything you offer out at once on your homepage, but your website viewers may feel overwhelmed by this and click off your site. Keep focus and test out different offers over time.
Designing a clear, focused path
So you have or you are on your way to having a purposeful brand design and homepage… now what? Now it’s time to map out the rest of your website so you can create a flow and clear path for your visitors. This path’s purpose is to turn your website viewers into customers. This should be a seamless combination of beautiful design and purposeful functionality.
It’s best to take a deeper look inside your business and ask yourself what your goals are for your website. What are your objectives and how can you lead your visitors through them easily? Clearly, your final objective is probably for them to sign up or buy your product or service. It’s brash to ask them to do that right away before they have a proper introduction to you. Get your visitors acquainted by taking them through a funnel or path and then into the sale.
Take a look at your website now and think about the ways you can get your potential customers to get to know you and your content more before you ask them to buy. They should probably be led to your about page, blog, and then possibly to your lead magnet where they can get more acquainted with you. Draw out a clear map of where you would like them to go and design your site with this as your foundation.
You can offer a couple options at once, but be sure to highlight the most important one. For example, if you have a couple free offers or resources then choose one that is key and make sure you design this to stand out. It’s ok to give more than one option on where to go, but keep it simple and focused.
Design Your Website to Increase Sales: Using call-to-action colors
I covered this in the 1st post of this series, but here we are going to dive deeper into best utilizing your call-to-action colors to guide your visitors to sign up and buy more. Examples of these call-to-actions may be for your website visitors to sign up for your email list, buy your products, enroll in your webinar, download the latest version of something, etc.
It’s essential to choose a bolder color in your brand color palette to use on these CTA buttons. If you haven’t chosen a color yet, you can always add another color to your palette to use solely for this purpose.
Here’s a great example of this from Uber. Within seconds of looking at the homepage, your eye can quickly pick up on exactly what they want you to do by their use of the bold, green buttons.
Colors are powerful in encouraging certain feelings and guiding people to take action upon your offers. Choosing a color that stands out among the rest of your palette is ideal here. You can also choose a secondary color that compliments your main CTA color that will work as an accent to this. For example, your buy button can be a bright orange and your secondary CTA color can be a less intense color that works to provide additional information along with your main bright orange CTA button.
Once you have this CTA color, make sure to use it sparingly so you can guide your visitors to act upon that color every time they see it on your website. This is an awesome technique that can be implemented immediately and you’ll be able to see the best results.
Design Your Website to Increase Sales: Quality photography + graphics
Photos have the power to completely make or break your website’s first impression. I’ve seen the power of what a couple amazing photos and graphics can do to turn around a website. You don’t have to be professional photographer or graphic designer to get your hands on some brilliant imagery. There are many resources you can use for high-quality photography. Also, creating graphics on your own doesn’t have to be rocket science either.
Photos have the capacity to quickly convey a feeling in seconds. If your brand is a personal brand, then I highly recommend getting professional photos done. It’s completely worth the investment and can totally uplevel your website immediately. Your potential customers need to see you in order to trust you. And not only that, if you have photos that you love then you will feel more confident in putting yourself out there to your audience.
For all other photos, make sure you choose high-quality, brand-focused stock photography or have these photos custom done for you. There’s probably about 1,000 cheesy stock photos for every good one, so be extremely picky in your photo choosing process. The era of tacky stock photos is over. If you need inspiration, try creating a mood board specifically for your brand photography. This will help you stay focused and give you more direction. You want to convey a consistent image, so make sure the photos you choose are aligned with your vision.
Your graphics are as important as high-quality photos on your website. They should work together in perfect harmony to create an effective brand image. You don’t need to be an design expert and always remember that less is usually more when you design your website graphics.
Use your brand style guide that we covered in part 1 of this series to keep your graphics consistent. Consistency is powerful in the online selling world. People buy from brands that dependable and brand that they can trust. Starting with aesthetic consistency will draw your customers in and then allow them to see your constant consistency over time.
Keep in mind when you are designing your individual graphics that you don’t need to add your entire font and color palette into each element. Your website as a whole will work together so keep each element simple and sprinkle each of your colors, fonts, and other design elements throughout your site. Keeping it simple will help your visitors feel less overwhelmed in your visual space. Clunky design is out and simplicity is in. There’s nothing like a clear, focused website that makes your potential customers excited about sticking around there for a while.
Design Your Website to Increase Sales: Where to put call-to-actions, how to design them to increase conversions, how many you should include.
Now that you have all these brilliant call-to-action ideas brewing, you are going to become a pro at knowing how to implement them on your website to get the most action out of them. As I mentioned before, it’s best practice to put your main call-to-action before the fold. Yes, most of us know how to use the scroll bar, but most of us don’t take the time to use it every single time.
Create a catchy headline to your offer to draw your visitors in. This should prompt them to take action to your corresponding CTA button. Make sure this reads before your button either to left or top of it as this is the way our eyes move across the screen.
White space can be your friend here. You don’t want to overcrowd things as it is a balance between fitting everything above the fold, but also keeping it simple. Keep space between your heading, CTA button, and any other design elements. Remember, we don’t want to overwhelm anyone with too many fonts, graphics, or overall visual overwhelm.
Now that you know how to design a main call-to-action you can add others around your site. You can add them in the footer, your sidebar, pop-ups, or anywhere else you feel inspired. Although, make sure that your most important CTA take precedence over the other secondary ones. It may be that your website visitors want to wander through your site before handing over their email and especially their credit card so it’s completely ok too sprinkle CTA’s in other places on your site.
With everything said here, you’ll be on your way to creating a brilliant user experience for your audience while increasing your sales. Now that you have techniques in your back pocket, always remember to provide intense value first as these tips are to make your genius shine, not to depend solely on them. Get out there with confidence and start to design your website.