6 Ways to Drive Revenue With Your Website

 by anthony on  |
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When looking for help online, you’ll often come across new, revolutionary tools or “hacks”, as we now call them, that vow to drive revenue tenfold and make you filthy rich. Unfortunately, 99% of these are empty promises from companies that are using our naivety to make some tidy profit for themselves. They usually go a little something like: “Make a million bucks in 3 months by paying just $100 for our eBook”. So you part with your $100 and do everything literally by the book, but nothing happens. You might have fallen for this trap already, but don’t feel bad if you have because it happens to the best of us.

The cold truth is that there's no quick fix for driving revenue, not unless you get exceedingly lucky and let's face it, the majority of us will never get that kind of luck. Forget getting rich quick and focus on building lasting foundations to bring in a steady revenue stream that will – if you do it right – help you "get rich" (I hate that term). As an online business, your website is your first port of call to start creating that revenue stream and below are six tried and tested ways to drive revenue with your website. No jargon, just solid advice.

1. Become a traffic cop
First up is to get a handle on increasing your site traffic and police it with military precision, because nobody is going to hand you customers on a plate. The best way to drive traffic is to increase your visibility – if you can’t find yourself on the first page of Google, how do you expect your customers to find you? There are plenty of ways to increase your visibility but the most instantly effective will cost you, and that’s paid search. Using paid search, you can skip the long queues and buy your way to the top of the search results, guaranteeing a lot more traffic to your website. The problem with paid search is that, well, you have to pay for it.

The alternative is search engine optimization (SEO). SEO is a free way of organically improving your search ranking and while it isn’t as instantaneous as paid search, it’s more sustainable in the long run; particularly if your budget isn’t suited to buying your way to success. In an ideal world, you should drive traffic to your website using a combination of both paid search and SEO; spending some money on being instantly visible, but always working on building content for sustainable, organic results in the background. Already working on paid search and SEO? Try out some email marketing, guest blogging on other websites or focusing on social media.

2. Speak your customers' language
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: to target a global audience and exponentially increase traffic, you really need to be able to speak to them in a way they understand. I don’t mean just translating your website from one language to another; I mean actually localizing it to match the cultural differences that are prevalent across languages. Getting your website professionally translated is a good start and will make sure your content is kept in context, as well as retaining its SEO friendliness. But it only starts with the text, there’s also the format of your site that needs to change.

Think about a Chinese website versus an American website; Chinese websites are typically colorful, loud and sometimes slightly bizarre in how they look. Would Americans be more likely to buy the same thing from a Chinese website over an American one? Of course not, and the opposite is also true. Relying on Google Translate simply isn’t enough to sustain global website traffic or drive revenue; you have to adopt a chameleon-like approach and speak to every target audience in a way they understand.

3. Offer value, not vanity
Yeah, yeah, yeah… we know your product is the bee’s knees and everyone should buy it straight away, but there’s really no need to brag about it (not all the time, anyway). Once someone lands on your website, you need to be able to offer something that’s of value to them and not a self-serving vanity exercise. The content on your website should be informative and useful, it should tell customers exactly what they want to know and be of benefit. Most people do a degree of research before spending money on something online, be it checking product reviews, prices etc.

If you offer them content that’s trustworthy and actually helps them, but your closest competitors don’t, who do you think they’ll decide to buy from in the end? That’s right, you! This isn’t to say that you shouldn’t display the benefits of your product on your website – you should – but the needs of the customer must come first in order to really enhance their experience and build lasting relationships. Content channels that can add value include things like (good) eBooks, white papers, blog posts (like this one) and even videos.

4. Create a call-to-action
Sometimes I come across an ad that looks interesting, so I invariably click on it to dig a little deeper. Next thing I know, I’m on a landing page and thinking “what do I do now?”, because there’s literally a bunch of text, but nothing tangible about what it's all for. When you’re putting all that time and effort into bringing people to your website, don’t just leave it to chance that they’ll know what to do once they get there.

Create a call to action and tell them what they need to do next – do you want them to sign up for a trial or a newsletter? More importantly, do you want them to make a purchase? Whatever the case may be, shout the call to action loud and clear on every page and make sure that visitors know what the next step is. There’s no benefit to having people land on your website and leave without doing a thing.

5. Make it mobile
Hands up if you know someone that doesn’t own a smartphone? Ok, since I can’t see anyone’s hands I’ll assume that the answer is zero, and if it’s not zero then it’s pretty damn close. In this day and age, it's totally unacceptable for any website not to be responsive to mobile devices; it should look good and perform well on the likes of smartphones or tablets without breaking a sweat. Everyone and anyone uses their mobile devices to surf the web on a daily basis and that includes your potential customers.

Landing on a site that’s not mobile friendly is a horrible experience that forces you to zoom, scroll and pinch your way to the content that you want to see. Most people don’t have the patience for such an abomination anymore and will simply squint their eyes tightly to find the “X” button on the browser window, taking your potential sale with them. It’s imperative that your site is mobile responsive and gives a super-easy user experience, otherwise you’ll lose out on a boatload of potential sales and most likely pad your competitor’s wallet instead.

6. Analyze, test and optimize
With digital, the party never stops because things change so fast that you can miss it in the blink of an eye. This means what you’re doing today might be working a treat, but could mean absolutely nothing tomorrow. Once you’ve concocted the perfect formula, you can’t afford to sit on your laurels. Always continue to analyze the performance of your website to see what’s working and what isn’t. Free tools like Google Analytics are extremely powerful when you know how to use them – so if you don’t know how, learn.

When you find something that doesn’t work, test new ways of doing it – not every test you do will result in discovering the next big thing, but you won’t find anything if you don’t try. A/B testing is an excellent way to try different things and get direct comparisons betweent them.

Final Word
A website is an underused and underappreciated weapon in the revenue-driving warchest of many businesses. There's often a school of thought prevalent that simply having a website in the first place is enough, but it's not. A website can be so much more than just a prerequisite to fill out for doing business in the digital age, it can act as a catalyst to bring in a steady stream of new customers and drive your revenue to new heights; but you've got to give it the love and attention it deserves.


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