Use Your Business Website to Connect with Your Customers - dummies

Use Your Business Website to Connect with Your Customers

By Marsha Collier

After you have your business website up and running, you should periodically evaluate it to make sure you’re giving your customers enough information to make a clear business decision. People make decisions by reading, perusing, and basically getting a “feel” from your website.

You may find it a challenge to portray your business on the web. To make the process easier, think of your website like your home or business. The physical appearance of your store or office says a lot about you.

How annoyed are you when you sit in a waiting room only to find year-old magazines and worn furniture? Does it make you feel positive about the professional you are waiting to see? In a retail store, what story does dusty merchandise and unkempt shelves tell you? The situation is similar with a website.

Consider the design of your own website: How accessible are you to your customers? Are you giving your audience access to information and descriptions of services, or are you merely saying where you are and what you sell and then asking for an order?

Gone are the days when you could say, “Here I am. Here’s what I do. Now do business with me.” Twenty-first-century social media commerce works on trust and requires a little romancing of your prospective client.

The Edelman Trust Barometer (a measure of online credibility) states that 77 percent of people refused to buy products or services from a company they distrusted.

If all you do is put up a website, promote your business with search engine optimization, and wait for the money to roll in, you’re not providing any sort of service to your customers. (And, no, accepting PayPal payments for online sales don’t count.)