Friday, March 29, 2013

How to Create an Inspiring, Fully-Optimized Website

Last week, we discussed how website optimization, also known as SEO, has evolved with the Internet to  to  help online businesses deal with the byzantine challenge of marketing to a global audience. And yet, as discussed, the reason website optimization remains relevant is because it relies on the timeless marketing strategies. Marketing is  about communication, and from the beginning of commerce the art of attracting customers has remained the same: it’s about what you say and how you say it.

What you say has to do with the actual content of your message,  the specific words, phrases, and design elements you use to express your online business. If you're looking for a few essential tips for creating fully-optimized content, check out last week's post. What you say is often an intellectual exercise--defining the precise words and images that will attract your customer.

In terms of website optimization, attracting visitors to your site is only one part of the equation. You also need to inspire your visitors to return! One-time visitors might be incidental, or accidental; perhaps these visitors were looking for something else. But repeat-visitors probably indicate well-informed visitors—visitors who might become actual customers. So how can you create fully-optimized content that is also attractive? How can you engage your visitor's imagination, inspiring return visits?

How you say it deals with the emotional content of your optimized website, how your words, phrases and design elements inspire your potential customer. When a visitor first views your site, he or she will  experience an emotional response, and this response has as much to do with how you say it as what you say. Consider these crucial questions:

Is your website user-friendly? 

Do the colors and style of your visual elements immediately inspire confidence, or happiness in your customer? 

Is your language enthusiastic, positive, and evocative?

Are the promises you make about customer service sincere? 

Are you conveying your humble desire to show your customer the obvious benefits that your product or program has for their business? 

A well-trained website designer and/or website optimization specialist can achieve some of this work for you, but to truly inspire your customer you, the website owner, need to cultivate a well-honed aesthetic sensibility. To do so, you might browse websites that you find visually appealing. Look at these websites with a keen eye, and try to answer the questions above.

Consider the first question: Is the website user-friendly? Speed and reliability are crucial website features, and you should consider both equal in importance to your products and services. If your website loads quickly, visitors will easily navigate between pages with blasting speed, and there will be no need to visit any other website for the same product or service. Search engines also investigate this type of website performance, and even if your website has been optimized for content, you might be penalized for poor performance.

Once you have a vision for exactly how your product should be presented, you must convey that vision to your website designer and/or website optimization specialist. In turn, you should take care to choose a website designer and website  optimization specialist who have created naturally-optimized websites that you find visually attractive.

If you provide your customer’s imagination with positive impressions the mental image he or she forms of your product or service is bound to be positive as well.  Because of the way the human mind works, your customer is free to create any image of you, so naturally he or she will tend to create one that appeals to and suits him or her. This fact has to do with the power of imagination. So, if you can learn to get your customer’s imagination to wake up and notice you in a positive way, you will have the most powerful ally of all on your side in your effort to work with your customer for mutual benefit.

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