Guest blog by Geoff Kliza

Websites….There’s something about technology that makes the average person either cringe in fear or believe in magic. This leads to one of the most forgotten things on your home page: introduce yourself.

It seems natural in a conversation: “Hi, I’m Geoff Kliza with Hybrid Forge and I help my customers convert prospects through their website.” Not so hard. Yet when it comes to a website the message is often unclear. Often you say too much or let the technology speak for you. Maybe it’s due to fear – I don’t know how to talk online so I’ll just talk a lot.  Or maybe it’s a false faith in technology – if I put some sliding images in the banner, it will grab their attention. Either way, it is a common mistake and often results in a homepage that actually alienates visitors.Don’t believe me? Look at your analytics if you have them. Check the bounce rate on your home page. Your home page probably has a 50-60% bounce rate. There are many factors that affect this number, but it means that more than half of your visitors immediately leave.

Why? A visitor will make up their mind about your website within 7 seconds. The main question that they want to know is “am I in the right place?” Let’s face it everyone is busy these days. If you make someone think or hunt for their answer, they will often go back to the search page and pick the next result. Don’t let the right visitor leave because you’ve lost their interest.

This is why it is so important to clearly introduce yourself, your services, and your differences. In marketing terms, this is called a “value proposition”. Your value proposition is a promise of the value that you deliver.

The value proposition is typically short, ideally fewer than 25 words. It explains how you will improve your prospect’s life, the specific benefits you deliver, and how you are different from your competition.

Are you are promising something faster or better? Maybe you can reduce costs or you are the easiest to use. In a knowledge industry, you can be the smartest or even the easiest to understand. The longevity of your brand can speak for itself, or maybe you are the disruptor, new and revolutionary.

I won’t go into writing the value proposition here. As you can imagine, packing your entire business model into 25 words or less is a daunting task, but if you don’t have it, write it.

Putting that value proposition on your home page is the single most effective thing you can do to ensure that you keep the right visitors on your website.

What are your thoughts?  We’d love to hear from you.  Comment below….

Hybrid Forge brings over 30 years of combined Web design, ERP, and eCommerce consulting experience. Providing professional eCommerce services, they have designed and implemented a variety of shopping cart software and payment gateway packages, and they have built customized Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) tools for their clients.   (X5 Management is currently modifying their website and is pleased to be utilizing the services of Hybrid Forge).

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