5 Little Tricks Successful Online Companies Use to Convert More Customers

08/04/2016 04:40 pm ET Updated Aug 05, 2017

Imagine you're running a restaurant. Lots of people come and all your tables are busy.
But no one buys anything - maybe they'll ask you for a glass of water.

How embarrassing is that?

Maybe you experienced this feeling of inefficiency with your website. You worked hard to get your site noticed, but even though many people visit your site, no one seems to be interested in what you sell.

So you decide to work more to bring more potential clients to your site.

But is that really what you should focus on?

Here are 5 things you should consider if you would like to convert more visitors on your site.

1 - Take your company identity to the edge
Nobody likes to be like everyone else. But it's the impression most companies give when to their online visitors.

Instead of having a "me too" identity and website, find what is different about your company, and amplify that.

Seth Godin explains in his book Free Prize Inside to go to the edge:
"We're caught in the centre of a web of boring, the goal of edgecraft is to pick an edge, and go all the way."

Being a bit better than your competition, a bit more shiny doesn't help you grow.
Get noticed. Make it controversial. Have fun. Be remarkable.

The book Blue Ocean Strategy also suggests to not play the game of your competition.

For example, if most of your competitors offer a complete service, instead of also adding features to your service, strip it away.

2 - Make your design distraction-proof
Once you have that strong identity, it's time to translate it to your website design.
Emphasize it in the copy, the colors, the images, the style. But make it clear.

A clear design allows the visitor to focus on what's important. It also adds credibility and professionalism to your page.

Don't get too original with the structure of your site. You see, people are used to see company logos on the top left of a page and a horizontal menu on top. Keep it fairly classical so the visitor can focus on your message instead of looking for the info.

Avoid bad stock photos. Adding a picture of a real customer can do great for your conversions.

Finally, make sure you have a consistent design across your site to avoid confusion

3 - Tell them what's the logical next step

Something in your slick design needs to grab the attention. Something colorful and different. An easy to understand Call To Action button that emphasizes the logical next step to take.
Its purpose is to provoke an immediate response in your visitor's brain, and usually contains an imperative verb such as "Buy Now" or "Find Out More".

Unfortunately, there is no magic copy, color or place that wins all the time.
However, if you make your CTA button contrast with the rest of your design by using a complementary color, and a button copy that answers the visitor's question "Why should I click?", you should be on track.

You can also enhance the power of your CTA by adding positive testimonials of people that went through this process, or a promotion to entice them to click.

4 - Your contact page isn't enough. Go for chat
Even if you spent months improving the user experience of your site, visitors will still come up with questions. And the thing is, they don't want an answer in a day, or even an hour. They want it now.

Certainly, having a contact page is a pre-requisite of your site, but people know an answer through email takes time.

And while having a phone number available on your page is essential for businesses with an office, it's harder to set up for freelancers and smaller businesses.

An option would be to set up a call schedule app on your site, but once again, it doesn't provide a quick answer. A phone call is also somehow intrusive, and most people won't bother to use it.
After all, your visitor might only have a quick question about your product, so booking a phone call seems a bit over the top.

That's why setting up a chat system on your site can make a big difference. When the future buyers on your site have a question, they just click the chat box and get instant answers from you, which you can provide from your phone, from anywhere.

And if you're not around to answer, they can fill a simple email form with their question. Quick and non-intrusive.

5 - Add an explainer video to put it all together
You've seen explainer videos on top of a page's site. But why so many people use them?
Simple. It catches the attention of the visitor like no other medium and informs the visitors in a fun, clear and passive way about your company.

To be even more efficient, the explainer video needs to direct the viewers to take action at the end of the video. Recommend them to sign up to your email list, buy your product or simply ask to contact you through the online chat system if they have any questions.

If you're advising your viewers to click a button, place it below the video, and add an arrow at the end of the video that points towards your CTA button. That will add a visual clue towards the action they need to take.

Having an animated video not only explains what's happening on your site, but gives sense to the next action to take, increasing dramatically your site's conversions.

So stop leaving the destiny of your business up to luck.

Take action on what really works. Pick one of these tricks and apply it to your website tomorrow.
It will increase your conversions immediately and more importantly, you will increase your sales and your business will have space to breathe.