How to Engage Your Customers and Make Them Take Action Online

Customers EngagementEvery online business owner knows what it takes to run a successful business: not only popularity but increased revenue through high-quality traffic and conversions powered by optimum customer service. Optimizing the customer’s experience of your website is critical to the survival of any website owner’s business. If your business website is generating low income due to declining traffic, perform routine tests of your page’s elements as an immediate measure. By implementing any changes to your website’s elements called for by your tests, you can arrest your decline in sales.

A lot of business owners are surprised by how many of their visitors abandon their shopping carts before checking out. Google Analytics reveals that there are specific percentages wherein customers drop their shopping cart off. However the reasons could not be determined immediately.

Performing routine tests of your website is the first step in optimizing the visitor’s landing page experience. This approach is incremental and should be tested thoroughly before fully rolling it out.

Repetition and Persuasion

Displaying persuasive copy and special offers repeatedly on your landing page is crucial. Take advantage of the opportunity your customers are giving you by browsing your products and services; persuade them with appealing offers and carefully worded sales pitches. You may not be able to control their emotions or thoughts, but you can control your sales words. Repetition burrows an impression deep in the visitor’s mind. Just avoid sounding like a used-car salesperson.

Aim for the heart: tell customers about your product’s benefits by enumerating its main features. You could also list what your product doesn’t have, such as no artificial flavors, additives, or harsh chemicals. Repeating these benefits will convince readers of the benefits in store for them.

Begging for Information

While collecting information and website visitor profiles is important, keep in mind that overdoing it can backfire. Customers are turned off by having to fill a load of survey forms before checking out. Asking for too much information for a simple purchase could lead to a cancelled transaction.

Forms can also make a website look cluttered. Try hiding forms behind drop-down buttons using DHTML or AJAX, allowing visitors to fill them out without having to reload the page or open another tab.

Reassure the Customer

Put yourself in the customer’s shoes, and you will find that revealing personal information such as email addresses and telephone numbers is a major concern. Earn their confidence by reassuring them. Email marketers often append their letters with something like, “We hate SPAMMING as much as you do, and we won’t sell your information to anyone else,” along with a link to their privacy policy.

The Trust and HackSafe seals are important to have beside your forms, as are the names of credit cards that customers can use to make payments. Still, nothing beats the traditional money-back guarantee and return policy that customers can use if they are not satisfied with a product or service.

Alternative Methods of Payment

For every Internet user still clinging to a dial-up connection and Internet Explorer v6, there is someone still not comfortable using their credit card online, despite the vast improvement in online security and horde of trusted online payment websites.

Address this concern by offering alternative ways to order and make purchases, including by phone and fax. Make sure your website is friendly to the diverse ways in which customers prefer to conduct business. Sometimes merely displaying a phone number for ordering and making inquiries instills trust in the visitor, even if they never use it.

Build Value

Create an atmosphere in which customers view your product as being valuable and are comfortable making a purchase. TV infomercials for home shopping use this method to boost sales. Just as you become convinced of a product’s benefit, along comes the host to announce that, “Call now and we will double your order!” This tactic builds value for your product.

It also helps to justify the cost of the product for sale. Whether the product is $5 or $5,000, the customer needs to like the item and feel like they have landed a good deal. One way to do this is by adding up the product or service’s features and comparing the actual price to the “value” that the customer is getting.

Various elements of a website can affect customer behavior. Identifying each element and “split testing” them one by one is well worth the effort. Test often and repeatedly. Mark your progress, weed out dead elements, and aim to surpass your best conversion records.

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  1. Regina Smola

    This is a great article on how to engage your customers to take action. You are right on target Douglas. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Merchant Accounts - Liz

    This is a great article Douglas. Offering your customers choices will help grow your business.

  3. Bill Hibbler

    Thanks for the article, Douglas. You seem to have a lot of things competing for readers' attention when they land on your page. How many of those elements are you testing?

  4. Zoe

    Douglas, thank you for an informative article. I agree with you wholeheartedly that the major point has to be transparency leading to trust. Tel numbers are important as are a no quibble refund policy etc. all designed to ensure the customer feels comfortable purchasing from your website. I personally hate questionaires/survey so have avoided putting them in and given a review option instead and a comments/inquiries option with email or telephone options.

  5. DaddyBlogZAUK

    Hi Douglas, you’ve made some interesting points here. I wouldn’t buy from a site that doesn’t have a telephone contact number nor a contact field in case of queries. After all how many of us buy without researching first, and how many would prefer to speak to the company first?  Quite a few I imagine! Thanks for the post. Has made me think about our strategy!

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