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Your website is the most powerful marketing tool that you’re ever likely to have and at such a little cost. It costs virtually nothing to keep a website totally up-to-date generating valuable qualified leads for your business 24 hours a day. The reality is that most businesses don’t get a flood of business from their website. If that’s your website, it could be because you are making one of five crippling mistakes.

1

Not being sufficiently different from your competition.
If your website is the same as your competitors, it is not going to help you steal any of their business. You need to ensure that your website (and in fact your business overall) is clearly differentiated from your competition. Why are you unique? Why should I buy from you? What makes you a better choice than your next competitor? Make your business different so that it clearly stands out may lose you business – the way you have positioned yourself will put some people off. But many will turn to your business, attracted by the fact you appear to be different from your competitors. Businesses that send a message of “me too” rarely win.

2

Obsessing over the look of the website.
It really doesn’t matter what your website looks like, getting the right colour is not as important as you think it is. The reality is that playing around with the look and feel of the website rarely generates an extra flood of business. Here’s what people want from your website: information! People are used to fixing their problems quickly with the Internet. They have visited your website to get the answer to their questions. You will generate more business more quickly by playing with the content, rather than the look of the website.

3

Writing content that’s all about you.
An effective website does not shout “me,me,me”. It is filled with information that potential clients will consider to be highly valuable. Make sure your content is written for them and is not just about you. Put yourself in the shoes of your prospect and try to think the way they do. Why have they visited your website? Why are they interested in your solution? What questions are they likely to have? When you write, write as if you are having a one to one conversation with the person you are addressing. When you think that way, you can then write content that answers their questions, and presents whatever you sell as the answer.

4

Not having a plan to drive traffic.
Just creating a website isn’t enough, people won’t visit it just because it’s there. You need to have at least 5 different ways of driving traffic in your plan. You can optimise your website to perform better in Google searches (Search Engine Optimisation). A faster way to get traffic is to advertise using pay per click advertising such as Google Adwords. You can also send email broadcasts, generate links from other websites, use online and offline PR, publish links to your content on Social Media.

5

Not having a way to capture data.
Most businesses don’t try to capture the data of a prospective client. Having spent all that money getting them to visit the website, they have no idea who they are and can’t market to them. It’s absolutely vital that you have some form of data capture on your website, even if it’s only as simple as a newsletter sign-up. When you have someone’s contact details, you know that they are a prospective client and you can directly contact them, follow up and eventually convert them into a client.

Have you come across any more mistakes that were crucial to success of a website? Please do share them below in comments.