5 Mistakes You Might Not Realize You’re Making

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Sometimes, it’s the things that we don’t know about that hurt us the most.  This rule is especially true in the world of online marketing.  Sure, you may think you have taken care of a specific detail, but just because you speculate that it is taken care of doesn’t mean that it actually is.  Although I could write an entire book on costly mistakes that internet marketers and website owners make without ever realizing what they’re doing, I’ve boiled my list down to the five that I see most often:

Visitors Will Click Where You Want: Whether you spent hours designing your website on your own or spent a large amount of money having someone design your website for you, you obviously put a lot of thought into how you want your website to look and where you think all of the page elements should be arranged.

Unfortunately, regardless of how much planning and thought you put into the look of your website, you simply don’t know if people are going to click where you want.  You may think that they are, but without data, you are completely in the dark.

Luckily, Crazy Egg takes care of this problem.  Crazy Egg (which is available in a free or paid version) allows you to drop a little snippet of Javascript onto certain pages of your website and then tracks where people are clicking.  Once it begins collecting data, you’ll be able to look at it in several different formats.  I can personally vouch for this tool, because it helped me realize that the most popular place people were clicking on one of my websites was an image, and before using Crazy Egg, I hadn’t even thought to link the image to anything!

Your Visitors are Returning: You’ve made a great website, so there’s no way that people wouldn’t want to come back…right?  While you may visit your website twenty times a day, this doesn’t mean that everyone else is.

The first step to finding out whether or not people are coming back is to install a program like Google Analytics.  Once you do, you can find out what percentage of your traffic is first time visitors.  Since it will probably be higher than you anticipate, you need to make the most of every person that comes to your website, and implement elements that will turn visitors into regulars.

Your Visitors Know How to Purchase What You’re Selling: Unless you are selling a product to the tech savvy audience, chances are your target demographic is much less comfortable using a computer than you realize.  Therefore, if you don’t make it extremely simple and obvious to begin the checkout process, you are going to miss out on a lot of potential sales simply because your visitors don’t know how to purchase your product.

The best things you can do to remedy this mistake is not only providing detailed information about the checkout process in the FAQ section of your website, but also make it easy to begin the checkout process from any page of the website.

Visitors Will Follow the Path You Want: Even if you are running a PPC campaign with a well-optimized landing page, just like people wander around and get lost in the real world, the same thing can easily happen on your website.  Therefore, even though you may have a great sales funnel set up to convert people into customers, you need to take a look at the other paths your visitors may be taking.  For example, look at some of the more popular inner pages that are sending you search engine traffic, and take on the role of a customer that wants to buy your product.  You will probably be quite surprised at how much more difficult it was to complete the transaction from these types of inner pages than you previously thought!

Your Potential Customers Will Find Your Website: Sure, you may be doing a great job of ranking for keywords in your industry.  However, how easy will it be for someone to find your website who had it recommended to them by someone else?  How about someone that bookmarked your website but is using a computer other than regular one (remember, not everyone uses del.icio.us)?In addition to ranking for your company name, you need to make sure that you can easily be found when someone inevitably misspells your name when they search Google for you.  If you want an easy solution to this problem, use PPC to bid on common (or related) spellings of your company’s name.

If you want to add to the list, feel free to help your fellow readers out and drop a comment below!

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