Previously I addressed the need to treat your website visitors more like guests. There are some very distinct differences between the two, one of which is that visitors don’t mind if they catch you unprepared. In fact, it’s kind of expected because they dropped by unannounced.
But a guest is expected and should feel as if you anticipated their arrival. On your website, you may not know exactly who is coming, but you know someone is. So you need to be ready to treat them as if you were expecting them.
Welcome them warmly
Once a guest arrives on your website, you need to make sure they feel welcome. Don’t bombard them with ads or requests to sign up for your newsletter or download your ebook seconds after walking through the door. Unless, of course, you want them to feel as if you only invited them over to hear your Amway presentation. Give them a chance to get comfortable and look around first.
- Remove ad overlays that pop up too soon.
- Have clear messaging that lets them know the page they are on fits with their desire or search.
Give them the tour
First-time guests need even more time to look around. They may even need a “tour” of what you offer. Most first-time guests will make their way to your home page, which should highlight various sections of your website, allowing your guests to head in any of those directions based on what they came for.
- Have a clear, clean navigation that is easy to understand.
- Use textual links to allow visitors to find their course while staying engaged with the content.
- Implement calls-to-action so visitors know what to do next.
Attend to their comfort
When a guest comes, you want them to be comfortable for the duration of their stay. That means you have to be a place they can trust.
- Use trust symbols, such as organization memberships, to showcase your expertise.
- Provide adequate contact information and ways to reach you.
- Showcase bios of your team so they know they are working with real people.
A guest that doesn’t feel welcome is really no guest at all. They’re just a visitor that is interrupting what you would rather be doing.