Friday, March 21, 2008

Who, what, where and when? How to answer prospects’ top questions

In every issue of our print publication, Internet Marketing Report, we review a Web site. In the March 26 issue, we wrote about this busines to business site.

Who are you? Are you reputable? What do you do? They’re just some of the questions prospects want answered within seconds of landing on your Web site.

That’s where the conference division of Aviation Week does well. We watched while the site was reviewed by expert Jimmy Huh of BusinessOL at the DMA Business to Business Conference in Florida earlier this month.

Huh asks:

  • Does the site look credible? This site immediately reassures prospects by prominently displaying its logos and brand names. Watch out though: Acronyms like MRO (one of Aviation Week’s leading products) only work when 100% of prospects use this term. Quick tip: Displaying a logo from an industry association or posting the company’s phone number in a prominent spot are other easy ways to reassure prospects that your company isn’t a fly-by-night operation.
  • Is the call to action clear? This site uses two bright red arrows to get prospects to convert. There’s no mistaking the most important call on the page.
  • Is it qualifying prospects? This site makes sure it isn’t wasting time on dud leads. It puts the dates and location of its conferences next to the sign-up button so nobody wastes time on conferences they can’t attend.
  • Is the site easy to read? That’s one of the ways the site fell down. Huh suggested the company should use darker text with a greater contrast.

Where am I?

Better onsite navigation is a sure way to prevent frustrated and angry visitors who can’t find what they’re looking for on your site.

Just like the story of Hansel and Gretel in the woods, “breadcrumbs” are the best way to keep visitors out of the woods and onsite.

Yet this basic navigation tool, which Huh says is a “must-have,” was missing from many sites he reviewed, including

What are breadcrumbs?

They are an online trail that tell a prospect where they are on a site, where they came from and how to get back home. Click for an example.

Posted by Internet Marketing Report editor Julie Power Friday March 21 at 8.30 a.m.


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