5 Essential Steps For Developing an Effective Inbound Website

effective inbound websiteThe rapid development of the Internet and its increasingly widespread use for consumers has made it essential for businesses to quickly grasp online marketing techniques. Businesses that use an inbound marketing technique to generate leads and boost conversion rates have taken a step in the right direction. However, the hurdle of building an effective website that encourages visitors to become buyers is a high one for many companies.

A more demanding consumer base means that companies need to cater to the needs of potential customers in order to make a sale. This means engaging with customers in the online arena and providing relevant content to website visitors that offers value to potential customers. Businesses that are concerned about the visual appeal of their website may have more success when focusing some of this energy on the effectiveness of their inbound website design.

These five steps for developing an effective inbound website can help businesses succeed in a highly competitive online market.

1. Define the buyer personas before developing a website.

Buyer personas determine the techniques that need to be used to reach the target market. Ensuring that a website speaks directly to this target market helps a business generate high-quality leads. Traffic volume will be related to visitors who are actually interested in making a purchase.

Determining the buyer personas is an essential step that will allow a business to enjoy a higher rate of return in regards to an inbound marketing plan. Understanding the target audience allows the business to craft content specifically for these demographics.

2. Stand out from the competition.

Many companies make the mistake of dryly discussing what they sell on their website. The reasons to choose one company over another are not discussed, and website visitors are left wondering why the competition would not be a better choice. Explaining the benefits of choosing the company for buying a specific product is a must.

3. Do not make search engine optimization (SEO) the first priority.

SEO helps drive traffic to a website, but it is important for businesses to avoid the trap of developing content specifically for SEO purposes. A better technique is to add in SEO after high-quality, valuable content that is relevant to website visitors has been created. Companies can review the opportunities to add links, use key phrases in headlines and inject keywords into the content of a page in a natural manner.

4. Make it easy for anyone to navigate the website.

Companies need to make the website easy to navigate for every visitor to ensure that these visitors can find the information that they need to decide whether they should make a purchase. It’s understandable for a business to assume that their website visitors know how to navigate a standard website, but catering to the most inexperienced Internet user lets companies ensure that visitors will stick around to make that purchase.

Menus should be simple and easy to find. Avoid the complicated sub-menus. Put links in highly-visible places on the website. A footer full of links, a visible main menu and anchor text make navigation a breeze.

5. Embrace responsive website design.

Nearly 40 percent of people reach a website through a mobile device. This number is expected to climb, and more than half of website visitors may be using a mobile device to access these websites by the end of 2014. A responsive website design allows businesses to use one template to reach all visitors. The website will look as it should on screens of all sizes to encourage mobile and computer visitors to explore.