If I could help the business world understand just one thing about Internet Marketing and more specifically websites, it would be that websites have to be continuously nurtured in order to continually thrive on the Internet.
Your website is not a set it and forget it type of thing. Well, I guess it could be, however it probably wouldn’t serve you very well for long — if at all.
Now regardless of the type of website you have, once it’s live, to ensure it’s continual value to both you and your target market, I highly recommend that you put it on a steady diet of what I call the “Website Success Cycle”.
Here’s how it works. In a nutshell the “Website Success Cycle” consists of 4-phases, “Drive”, “Convert”, “Analyze”, and “Tweak”. And essentially they get performed in a continuous loop throughout the entire life of your website. Let’s take a look at each phase.
Phase 1: Drive
Regardless of how much money or effort you put into your website, no traffic equals no value… for anybody. I mean how valuable can your website be if no one sees it? And since the whole point of having a site in the first place should be in one way, shape, or form to create value for both you and your target market, it’s critical that you leverage whatever marketing strategies and tactics that are at your disposal to drive traffic there.
Phase 2: Convert
So now you have all this traffic coming to your site… now what? Well you need a conversion strategy that leads those visitors down the path you want them to take — whatever that path may be.
For example, I recommend your conversion strategy at a minimum addresses first, turning each visitor into a qualified prospect… second, turning each prospect into a paying customer… and then third, turning each customer into a raving fan.
Phase 3: Analyze
As with any other of your marketing materials and campaigns, if your website’s not pulling its weight so to speak, change it — Time is money here. How do you know whether or not it’s pulling its weight? Well it all starts with having clear objectives of what you want your site to do for you. Then establishing metrics that you can regularly analyze to determine if your objectives are being met.
Phase 4: Tweak
Based on your findings in the previous phase, this phase is all about making the changes necessary to meet or exceed your objectives for your website. Whether those changes are ones to your site or what you do in any of the other phases, it’s all about improving your bottom line.
You always want to ask yourself here, what else can I do to take it to the next level?
So that’s the 4-phases in a nutshell. And in closing I’d like to leave you with this last little tidbit of advice if I may… the better you work the “Website Success Cycle”, the better your bottom line!
Website Success Cycle Deeper Dive
Watch this video to discover how to turn a stagnant and static website from set-it-and-forget-it to a website success machine that actually helps grow your business!
And for those of you who would prefer to read, here’s the transcript:
Hi this is Dean Mercado of Online Marketing Muscle and welcome to this week’s video segment.
What we’re going to discuss a little bit today has to do with what you see here on the screen, hopefully you can see that.
Your Website Success Cycle.
The big concept is websites are not a set it and forget it kind of thing. And I hope that you as a business professional get that concept because it is critically important, especially with all the changes to SEO these days that you are continuing to grow and develop your website.
The first piece of this success cycle, and it is a cycle, so it can continually go around and around and around. You’ve got to drive traffic to that website. Just putting the website there, no matter how great looking it is, how wonderful you love this thing, it’s not going to do very much for you if you do not intentionally drive traffic to it. So the idea is that it needs to be stimulated. Somehow we’ve got to pave the roads that go to that website so this way people can find it. It’s one thing to be the most beautiful, gorgeous house in the middle of the woods, that’s all fun and great, but if your friends and family can’t find it, if there’s no roads or no signage pointing to it, you’re going to be very lonely.
So the idea is you’ve got to find ways to drive traffic. SEO is one way, advertising is another way. Just telling people through networking is another way. There’s lots and lots and lots of different ways you can drive traffic to it. So just make sure you are driving qualified traffic. That’s a conversation for another day.
The second piece of this as we go around the success cycle in the reddish color here, is you’ve got to convert that traffic somehow. You’ve got to convert it so that number one you know who has been there. Who came to visit you? If you don’t know who is coming it’s very hard to grow your business. So the idea is that you’ve got to find ways to convert that traffic that is coming into a prospect of some sort. You do that through what we call ethical bribes. You can offer something in exchange for their contact information that kind of thing weather it’s a coupon, a special report, anything of the sort. But somehow we’ve got to capture their contact information so we know they were there.
The third piece of this as we go around this success cycle is to analyze. It’s critically important to analyze what’s going on on the website. Tools out there that are free these days, things like Google Analytics that will help you understand how much traffic you are getting, looking at your own internal reports, let’s say from your email marketing software whether you use Constant Contact, Infusionsoft, any of those types of software, MailChimp.
They’ll all give you statistics and so on and so forth so if you do have people signing up using a form created in those softwares you’ll get to analyze that data so you know exactly how many people are converting into prospects for you. And then you can do your follow-ups, so on and so forth. So we’ve driven the traffic to the website, we’ve converted that traffic, we’re analyzing what’s going on so we know 100 people visited, 3 signups happened, so we converted 3 different prospects. That’s great. That’s a 3% conversion rate which is wonderful.
And then the next phase of this or the fourth phase of this is to tweak. So whether we’re happy with 3% or not you may want 20% conversion rate and it is possible, any number is possible depends on what you put into it and if the bait you put out there in the conversion side of this, if that bait is strong enough yes your conversion rate can be very high. So tweak your website so that the conversions happen better. The idea is drive the traffic, convert the traffic, analyze just what happened and then tweak so that the website continues to get better and better and provide you with the results you are looking for.
Again, this is the website success cycle and understand that this will not happen if the website just sits there stagnant, so it’s up to you to create and continue to modify and tweak and add some love into that website so that it actually stands a chance to do something for you.
Dean Mercado of Online Marketing Muscle, best wishes make that website happen for yourself and we’ll talk real soon. Take care and have a great day!