Through some power of magic... or a whole lot of hard work, you’ve got a new visitor to your site!
Surely if they made the effort to find your site they'd want to stick around for a while, right?
In theory, but in reality getting a visitor to your site is only half the battle. It's just as hard to keep them there.
So why would a visitor so easily abandon content they specifically clicked though to see?
Well if you're making any of these four simple mistakes, you could be pushing your visitor to click away.
You see, we get so caught up in the nitty gritty of building our website that we forget to step back to look at it from a new visitor's perspective.
We become blind through our own familiarity.
But these oversights, while easy to make, can become brick walls when trying to convert new visitors to leads.
So how do you find out if you're making these mistakes on your own website?
Do the tests below to find out...
Mistake #1: Are You Leaving Your Visitor Baffled When They Arrive on Your Website?
When a new visitor arrives on your site it can be the first time they've heard of you.
It’s common just to get straight into the practicals of the site without a proper introduction. This leaves your visitors questioning what you do, and if your business is what they were looking for.
Let’s look at an example:
Can you figure out what this company actually does?
Obviously they do something to do with property... but what?
Are they a development company? Do they run courses on property investment? Do they buy houses??
Your guess is as good as mine.
You’re more likely to exit this page than to read on, trying to decipher what services they actually offer.
So how do you know if your website is clear and concise enough?
What is the most important thing for your new visitor to know?
How can you sum that up in one or two sentences?
Let’s take a look at a headline that perfectly captures this business's unique selling proposition.
A new visitor can instantly determine what the business does, and if it’s something they’re interested in.
Once you’re figured out your unique selling proposition, make sure it stands out on your site. It should be the first thing your visitor’s eyes are naturally drawn to.
Mistake #2: Are You Overwhelming Your Visitors Before they Even Have a Chance to Get to Know You?
It’s tempting to target every pain point and problem your visitor might be having.
The more lightboxes and free guides you throw at them, the more chance something will stick, right?
Quite the opposite...
The more pop-ups, buttons and opt-ins you bombard your visitor with, the less likely they are to pay attention to them.
Let’s take a look at some examples of how overwhelming too many calls to action can be.
There are 7 separate calls to action on the top of this homepage.
It is impossible to know where to start.
Each of them hold equal visual weight, meaning the design doesn’t highlight any particular option as the most important.
The only thing that really stands out is the NO THANKS, I’D RATHER BE STRESSED button.
You don’t want your ‘no thanks’ option to be the most eye catching element on your page.
Lets take a look at call to action mania in a more intrusive form.
Three separate popups. Can you spot all them all?
Imagine you found this blog post after searching the topic on Google. You click, eager to read the content.
Before you even know who this guy is, he’s asking you to allow browser notifications, add him on twitter and opt-in to his email list.
The piece of content that got you to the site in the first place is now completely hidden behind a list of demands.
Be clear on the most important action you want new visitors to take when they arrive on your website. Use this as your main call to action, and either eliminate or heavily reduce any other prompts on your site.
If you really need more than one main call to action you have two options:
Option 1: Allow Your Visitors to Self Segment
Say you have few dramatically different services, such as the Tim Mangold Realty example. The site needs to cater to two very different audiences, people looking to buy a house, and people looking to sell a house.
These two groups require different things to move forward in their Buyer’s Journey.
It is possible to cater to both these groups, while still only using one lightbox.
The multi-step lightbox in Thrive Leads allows you to ask your visitor a multiple choice question. Their response determines which opt-in offer they'll be shown.
Let’s take a look at this in action on the Thrive Themes blog.
Each option leads to a different opt-in offer, depending on what the visitor’s main focus is.
This dramatically increases your chances of a visitor opting in, and allows you to add tags or assign your visitors to different lists based on their responses.
Option 2: Use the Already Subscribed State
Once your visitor opts in for your initial offer, you can use the Thrive Leads already subscribed state to present a new call to action.
For example once visitors sign up to your email list, the initial opt in offers can be swapped out for a ‘Book a Consultation’ prompt.
This is particularly useful because you know they’ve already taken the first step in the Buyer’s Journey (opting in to your list) and now you can show an offer targeted to someone further down the funnel.
Mistake #3: Can Your Visitor Find What They’re Looking for With Just One Click?
Can your visitor immediately find what they need, or do they have to hunt for it?
Often we just throw up menu items as we add new pages our website. This leads to a severe case of word soup at the top of your page.
Let’s take a look at the Subpro website again.
As you can see there are two separate menus, which makes everything disjointed to begin with.
If you take a closer look you’ll see the menu items themselves don’t make much logical sense.
It’s unclear if the items at the top of the page are referring to their services, information or portfolios.
The second menu has a number of irrelevant headings that leave the visitor wondering where on earth they should click.
The menu item categories don't make sense because of double ups, such as ‘Information Evening’ being separate from ‘Events,’ and the fact that there's a ‘Services’ heading, even though all their services seem to be listed above.
List all the pages on your site.
Put each page in one of two categories - important/most frequently visited pages, and not so important pages.
Try to logically sort them into categories that anyone would be able to intuitively navigate, ensuring you important/most frequently visited pages are on the main menu or can be easily accessed from the main menu.
Let’s take a look at how the pros do it.
Now at first these menu items might seem fairly random, but I can assure you a lot of thought has gone into them.
It’s a culmination of the most visited pages and the biggest triggers responsible for converting a new visitor into a customer.
Every item is clear and concise, and caters to different visitor needs and different stages of the decision to buy (aka. The Buyer’s Journey).
Mistake #4: Are You Making It Hard for Your Visitors to Trust You?
Trust is one of the most important factors in collecting subscribers and leads, especially when all a visitor has to judge you by is your website.
A visitor entering their email into your site is almost like a trial run.
They’re trusting you enough to hand over their contact information, and what you do next determines if they made the right choice.
That trust can be undermined by the simplest of things, such as redirecting your visitor to a completely different website after opting in (usually the default thank you page from your email service provider).
Another common oversight is making absolutely no mention of how or when they’ll get the opt-in offer they signed up for.
Let’s take a look at this opt-in to thank you page to see funnel disconnect in action.
The lightbox offers visitors an ‘Easy Vegan Wardrobe Guide’ if they enter their email address.
Looks and sounds great!
Once they hit the 'download now' button it's like the curtain has been pulled. New subscribers are taken to a completely different website.
“Did I just get scammed? Where’s my downloadable guide? What the hell is GetResponse?”
Not only has the design and url been completely switched up, but there is also no mention of the guide they entered their email in for in the first place.
This adds to the feeling that they’ve just been played.
And on top of all that, there’s not even a link back to the original site so they can continue reading the content that got them there in the first place!
Let’s take a look at what a smooth opt-in journey looks like.
There is a clear congruence between all the steps in this opt-in process.
The design and colors are the same, the wording of the opt-in offer is the same throughout the pages, and the Thank You Page clearly states how the visitor can get what the opted in for.
At no point throughout this process is the visitor left wondering what is going on.
To achieve this kind of flow with your own funnel make sure you always redirect to a custom Thank You Page within your website.
Tell your new subscriber how they can access what they signed up for, and clearly state what the next step is. This may be to confirm their email address, read a particular blog post or something as simple as return to the homepage of your site.
For tips on how to keep subscribers happy further down the funnel, this is only 1 of the 7 mistakes we spotted in the funnels we just analyzed. Check out all 7 mistakes here.
Keep Your Website From Slipping
So how did your site fare?
Were you surprised by how different the experience was in an incognito window?
It’s important to keep these checks up on your site, even if you made it through this round of tests unscathed. Just one new rogue plugin can turn your site from a joy to explore to a nightmare to navigate.
A good practice is to schedule 10 minutes in your calendar every three months to quickly run through these tests. This will ensure you’re never unknowingly alienating your visitors with these common but easy to make mistakes.
I hope this post helped you avoid some common visitor experience faux pas. If you have any questions or comments please leave them below.