Thursday, April 23, 2009

Stop! What stops prospects from clicking off a site?

In every issue of our print publication, we review a Web site. In this case, we reported on a Web site review conducted by an industry expert Matt Bailey.

Jump (or wrestle the next marketer to the ground) to get your site reviewed for free at a search engine or online marketing conference.

These clinics or Web site reviews provide access to industry leaders and experts, who provide valuable free advice that would probably cost you an arm and a leg otherwise.

Here's a site review conducted by Matt Bailey, president of SiteLogic, who reviewed a series of sites at Search Engine Strategies Conference in New York last month.

We watched in admiration while Bailey reviewed the landing page and home page of the same site, I liked this review because it focused on the differences between a landing page and a home page.

BTW, one good thing to start: 6figurejobs works if you type in sixfigurejobs. Something to remember if you have numbers in your URL.

Trust and credibility are crucial on a home page. But landing pages have different challenges, he said about 6figurejobs.

Unlike many B2B sites, this company’s call to action is big, bold and beautiful.

It’s well placed above the fold on the top of the screen.

But it fails to sell the prospect on why he or she should sign up.

What can you do? Say what’s in it for them and build trust, by adding:

  • Hard facts including specific numbers like, “We’ve placed 5,400 execs in jobs with $100K salaries in the last three months.”
  • Testimonials from happy buyers, and
  • Ditching the ads on the right-hand side of the page, which make the site look a bit scrappy and spammy (my words, not his. He was far more polite.)
In contrast, streamlined landing page has to build trust, maintain a prospect’s interest and capture the lead in a flash.

Whoa! Asking too much too soon

Only trouble, the landing page currently asks prospects to load their resume. (Would you really load your entire resume on a site like this without being convinced why? Not me. Nor Bailey it seemed.)

Asking for too much info too soon scares away interested prospects, says Bailey.

Solution: Ask for an e-mail address to start and follow up to get the rest.

Photos: Right type improve conversions but ...

Photos improve conversion rates online because prospects relate to the people in the photo.

That’s the theory anyway. Yet the four people in the photos on the home page of look skeptical and unhappy. Well, they did. It's good to see the company has changed the photo for a happier looking person. We found the old photo here using the WaybackMachine.

old photo from 6figure jobs

In fact, in all the site reviews I watched, many companies used photos of people who looked positively unhappy and unimpressed.

If you are going to use photos, you can get more conversions using these techniques:
  1. Try images of real people who resemble the average customer. When an industrial marketer tested photos of glamorous models versus those of a grizzled industry veteran, the latter converted more.

  2. Match the emotions to the page. 6figurejobs is much better off with this new photo of a happy smiling executive.

    Doesn't she look happy with her new six-figure position?

  3. Look in the right direction. Images convert better if the people in the photo seem to be looking at the call to action. In the original photo, they appear to be glaring at the Web visitor and away from the call to action. The grumpy bloke in the original photo was staring away from the call to action.

  4. Don’t amputate! Prospects get agitated by photos that appear to amputate body parts. The photo on 6figurejobs appears to amputate one of the model’s heads.

Posted by Julie Power, editor in chief, Internet Marketing Report.


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