Books are judged by their covers, houses by their street appeal, people by the company they keep …
… and your business, in the first instance, by its outward appearance. As the saying goes, “your business is on trial and the judge is your customer”.
The appearance of your office or retail space, the state of your company vehicles, the presentation of your staff, the quality of your advertising, the calibre of your online presence … all factor into the picture your prospect will form about your company.
If your physical space is a mess, your vehicles damaged or dirty and your staff slovenly or rude, there’s a better than good chance that prospective customers will assume that your business operates in the same way, and will move on to a company they perceive will be more trustworthy.
Some studies show that it can take as little as three seconds to register a negative impression in a person’s brain. So, no matter how good your product or company ethos may be, if it isn’t represented in your business’s physical or online presence, you risk losing potential customers as soon as (or before!) they even walk through the door.
How do I ensure my business website makes a great first impression?
The vast majority of your prospects will use the internet to find information and learn about your business, so a successful business will have a well designed, error-free and user friendly website.
While the exact length of time a new visitor will linger on a website ranges between anything from 15 seconds to 3 minutes, the definitive answer to this perennial question has always been the same:
Not Very Long!
Most prospects will be on your site for less than a minute, so if you don’t capture their attention with a great first impression, you will lose them.
Your prospective customers will want to get a general feel for your business via your website, and if it’s badly branded, confusing or sprinkled with bugs and issues, they won’t take the time to learn about your products or services (even if these fit their requirements).
7 Strategies to create a great first impression with your website
- Optimise your website to make sure it loads FAST! The longer your site takes to load, the less time you have to make that first impression.
- Use an introductory video on your homepage – when you have seconds to capture someone’s attention a visually engaging video is a great way to do it.
- Immediately tell your website visitors what it is you do, and how your company can provide a solution or answer to their problem.
- Provide them with direction on navigating your website and help them find the information they’re looking for with strategically placed calls to action to guide them through the site.
- Develop a connection and build trust with a great About Us page.
- Offer resources and information that illustrate expertise in your field and establish credibility.
- Optimise your website for a mobile user experience. People are accessing websites on their mobile devices more than ever.