Imagine, if you will, a time that existed before the internet. Difficult I know, but bear with me. imagine that you needed to purchase an item – let’s say a new bicycle. How on earth would you make this decision? Well, you would get in your car, drive down to the local bicycle shop and start to chat to a salesman. Yes, people used to trust salesmen. We didn’t really have much of a choice! These salesmen would tell us all about the bicycles they had in stock and advise us on the very best purchase based on our budget. Perhaps we would chat to a few friends, but ultimately, the local salesman was a respected voice whom we would rely on to make an informed decision. Purchase made!
Times have changed, the world has changed. Nowadays, we are the salesman. With the advent of the internet and the sharing of data, we no longer need the advise or expertise of a salesman. Think about your last store-based purchase… You probably Googled your products, read some reviews, asked around on Facebook and only then stepped in to a store. In fact, you were probably a little more knowledgeable than the sales person – or at least you thought you were.
Interestingly, statistics show that people have already made up their mind on their purchase, before entering the store to purchase the item – if they purchase in store at all!
Why am I telling you all of this? Well, I speak to so many people (clients) who claim to know what their customers want. The truth is that your client’s / customer’s online behaviour is vastly different to their offline behaviour. Online, they hide behind anonymity, able to visit 3 to 5 websites in a matter of minutes before formulating their decision on who to trust, where to buy and if they would like to make contact.
Your website needs to be ready to answer all of their questions in seconds. Yup, it all happens that fast. Time yourself the next time you’re on your phone looking up something. If the website doesn’t load, you ‘bounce’. On to the next one. If you fill in a form, you expect a response immediately.
One look at your Google Analytics will provide the case and point. Your website is the new salesman. It has to be fast, informative and your geared up to answer the questions people ask most!