Tuesday, January 13, 2009

More color, less copy: Corporate site shows how to be easy on the senses

In every issue of the Internet Marketing Report print publication we publish a Web site review. We often review a subscriber's site, but occasionally we choose a site at random like this one.

It's hard not to like a Web site built on a strong foundation, like Navteq.com.

The good:

It's a simple corporate site that uses big boxes to highlight a few messages, without a lot of copy.

Prospects hate being bombarded by text-heavy pages, especially on a home/landing page.

Navteq's home page presents info in bite-size chunks and is designed to fit in a typical browser window (no scrolling is a big plus).

Some other things Navteq.com has that companies can adopt:

  • It uses color to draw the eye. Each box on its home page uses a different color to draw prospects' eyes. And its main panel uses a colorful Flash file to explain the four ways Navteq impacts peoples' lives.
  • It loads fast. Despite using images and a Flash file on its home page, Navteq.com loads quickly. That's key, because no matter how pretty a Web site is, visitors need to see it fast.
  • It's linked. The more other sites link to your site, the better. Having links to your Web site from authoritative resources on the Internet helps it rank higher in search engines. Navteq.com has over a million inbound links. Wow!
However, the site is not without its faults.

The not so good:

A lack of updated content and an ineffective lead form are two things keeping this site from really singing.

Aside from a few things posted in a news box, there's no real updated content or RSS updates.

Advice:

  • Become interactive. News feeds, and RSS in particular, let companies communicate with prospects and existing customer more directly. Rather than sending out e-mail, RSS transforms a static Web site from a stiff brochure to a vibrant resource of updated news and information that users will refer to again and again.
  • Shorten lead forms. For prospects interested in buying from Navteq, there is a lead form. But, it's too long. Asking for a few bits of personal info (name, e-mail, product interest, etc.) is necessary, but 10-14 is far too many. Prospects on the fence about a purchase will look at a form that long and turn the other way -- thinking it's not worth their time.
Would you like us to review your Web site? E-mail jpower@pbp.com.


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