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Best practices for return website visits

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As an owner of a small or medium sized website it’s increasingly easy to find yourself losing customers. Often it is a case of simply not doing things consistently, so to improve your return visit rates, you need to understand how to keep up general best practices.

Where to start?

It’s a hard thing to get right, but once you do it’s quite easy to maintain. Often, it means making small but critical website changes, and how you generally manage each page. From back-end coding to increasing website speed and optimizing content for SEO, there can be a few areas to take care of. In this very simple guide we’ll examine overall what can be improved.

Keeping Customers Online: Clearing the Roadblocks

Improving website speed

For 2018, one of the most important things that you can do to boost website interaction and engagement is improving the overall user interface. The less customer roadblocks that exist, the better!

Start off by having your web designer or developer analyze website speed (including mobile page speed). It’s long been known that customers give you, at most, five seconds, before moving on. If pages do not appear to be loading in a few seconds, upgrades will help accommodate that issue. Fix the speed problem, you can make it much easier for people to come back later and find information they need.

You also need to make sure that you eliminate any kind of irritating, roadblock-style customer service ‘aids’. Let’s take for example pop-up live chat services, useful in some businesses such as support desks, but for other websites may merely drive people away. If someone must work through surprise appearances of web of live chat offers, coupons appearing on-screen, subscription requests and newsletter sign-up forms, they will likely want to go somewhere else. Sign-up offers, and other marketing strategies might entice your customers to return, must be done in a less obnoxious and off-putting manner. As a suggestion consider instead targeted landing pages optimized for organic SEO.

Online Customer Retention: Freshening it Up

Refresh your website content

Every day brings a new opportunity to educate, excite, sell and market. People who arrive at your website will expect to find a lot of new content to read over and enjoy. If you are not able to provide your audience with something different they may have no reason to return. Even if you re-visit old topics that were previously posted, a new spin can be enough to grab some extra attention. This can be used effectively within social media strategies. Try to personalize your business, too. Show the 2018 company roadmap so people know what you guys have planned for the year. Include your target audience and make everything open, friendly and inclusive; it’s by far and away the most effective route to capturing the hearts, minds – and yes, wallets or purses – of your customer base.

Freshening it up is not just for the content, look for creaky elements of your website design; look at the major trends in the market and see how ahead or behind the curve you actually are. Optimize your website for usage with mobile devices. While this should have been something completed a long time ago, the fact that over half of your customer purchases may come from mobile devices in 2018 means that it’s no longer forgivable not to be mobile-optimized. On March 26th, 2018, Google officially announced that they would be using mobile first indexing. This means that they are going to be indexing websites based on their mobile version- not their desktop version (previous). If you need to check if your website is mobile friendly, try Google’s “Mobile Friendly Test”.

Keep Customers Coming Back: Say Thank You!

Customer loyalty - Website Rewards

Lastly, the final key skill we recommend you look to utilize in 2018 is the skill of sincerity. Customer loyalty is when customers pick your brand over any other brand, based on a previous interaction they’ve had with you. We are luckily moving beyond the period in history where companies are constantly-smiling, entirely-false enterprises. The days of customers having total ownership of a business and how it can act is fading. The benefit is that you can now begin to put your own personality and impact on your business once again.

You know who you are targeting to please, so make sure that you go down the human route of always thanking your customers. While we are beyond the era of having to grin and bear it as a customer (wrongly) goes on an e-mail tirade to support about something they misunderstood, sincerity goes a long way.

Thank the ones who make it possible for your business to do what it does. Give them thanks and appreciation for being there so far, and for making it easy for you and your staff to just keep working to deliver what you always said you would. 2018 is a year for being sincere, so you should do yourself a favor and provide that goodness back to your customers.

More coupons, codes, special deals and extras will go a long way to helping secure people coming back for more. Don’t just tell people how much you appreciate their business in a kindly worded article; show it. It becomes much easier for you to show that wealth of love and prosperity in the world around you with the help of actual signs of good faith.

High quality gifts, great money-off vouchers for repeat customers and loyalty deals for people having shopped with you X months ago are easily arranged and managed, with very lucrative returns waiting.

Making a final impression: Conclusion

So, with all of this in mind, you should hopefully see that your business must change quite a lot in 2018. Your website must be more specifically managed, it must be sincere in its message and it has to cut back on the excess of marketing gimmicks used on-site.

The less time you spend increasing customer dissatisfaction, the more time you have to convince them to come back in the future. Using a little intuition and a solid digital marketing strategy, having customers return shouldn’t be as challenging as it feels.

Contact time4design to improve your customer  website return rates