Knowing your target audience and what they truly want is only the first step in the process of giving them resources they’ll use regularly. The goal is to make your site the go-to source for anything that falls within your niche area.
Only one-third of small businesses survive past the 10-year mark. One way to not only survive but also thrive is to offer consumers what they want. Figuring out what the best resources are isn’t always the easiest task. Here are 12 ways to make sure your site’s resources are top notch:
1. Ask What They Want
One of the simplest ways to figure out what resources your site visitors want is to ask them. Take the time to conduct a poll about what users most need from your site. If you have a mailing list, reach out and tell them you want to improve your site. Ask what they’d find useful or what features they aren’t very interested in that you should remove.
2. Stand Out From the Crowd
Take the time to study your competition and figure out what you can provide that is better, more in-depth or different than what they offer. Look at your site from the perspective of your target audience. How could it serve them better than it does at the moment? Now, visit your competitor’s site and do the same thing. Finish by going back to your own website and repeating with the knowledge of what competitors have on their sites.
Bark Box is a good example of a company that provides something that just about anyone could offer, but it gives some value that draws new subscribers in. One thing Bark Box does that is a bit unique is go with monthly themes. All the items in the box tie into the theme for that month. It also thoroughly tests out the products included and makes sure they are items most dogs love. Bark Box takes this a step further and replaces any items your dog doesn’t like for free.
3. Make Your Site Mobile-Friendly
One of the best features you can add to your site to rank better in search engines and reach customers on their level is adding mobile responsiveness to your site. About 77 percent of Americans own smartphones. Look around any waiting room or public event, and you’ll see people on the internet. If you want to reach those browsers, your site must be mobile-ready.
4. List Thorough Contact Info
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If you want users to trust that you’ll follow through on any promises, makes sure you place contact info where it’s easy to locate and that it is thorough. Add a toll-free number, provide live chat and respond via email to any requests.
Note how Reynolds Solutions provides an easy way to contact them by offering a toll-free number in the upper right corner. It draws attention to the phone number by using red text and a phone icon. It also repeats the info at the bottom of the page and again on the Contact Us page.
5. Personalize Your Offerings
Don’t assume all your customers fit into the same category. Instead, look at ways you can personalize what you offer to site visitors. If your customers log in, you can offer deals based on past purchases, for example. You can also provide options that allow the customer to customize the experience for themselves as they move through your sales funnel, narrowing the choices down to the perfect product for them.
6. Get Creative
One reason consumers turn to you for advice is that you are an expert in your industry. Take the time to get really creative with solutions and ways to use your product and share that information with consumers. Become the go-to resource for unique ideas.
Take a look at the Scott’s Miracle-Gro page. Notice how it has a lot of unique ideas about gardening and taking care of your plants. You’ll find topics on container gardening, canning the vegetables you grow, keeping plant roots healthy and winter harvests.
7. Add Video Tutorials
If you don’t have videos on your website, now is the time to consider adding them. Every month in the United States, more video content is uploaded than television created in a 30-year period. The likely reason is that about 45 percent of people watch an hour or more of videos on Facebook and YouTube each week. Videos are watched more often, shared more often and engage users more than other forms of content.
8. Connect to a Cause
Learn to connect with your target audience via a cause. Are you passionate about protecting the environment? Make sure your brand reflects that in everything you do, from your everyday business practices to the materials you use to ship your products in. The cause can be anything you’re passionate about or ties to your brand, but make sure you share your efforts with consumers and seek those who share your mission.
Lush is a USA-based cosmetics company that prides itself on creating and using environmentally friendly products. It has also made a commitment to not test its products on animals. It participates in social campaigns, such as giving back a portion of sales from a specific product line to community conservation projects. The products are made by hand, which means factories aren’t used, thus reducing Lush’s carbon footprint.
9. Study, but Don’t Follow Trends
Know what the current trends are. What terms are people searching for online? What big events are going on? However, don’t follow trends simply for the sake of following online traffic. This is rarely a successful long-term strategy. If something applies to your causes or your company, then you can jump in on that trend. Otherwise, stick with tried-and-true resources that your users love year after year.
10. Tell Relatable Stories
You’ve likely heard of the value of storytelling. Everyone loves a strong tale they can follow. However, you have to make that story one your target audience relates to. Use a familiar scenario, ask your customers to share their own personal stories and describe problems your average customer runs into.
11. Use Heat Maps
Discover which resources your customers use and which ones they care little about by utilizing heat maps. You’ll be able to see which items are looked at and clicked on and which are ignored. Consider replacing or removing items consumers aren’t responding to. You can then invest in additional features for the resources consumers love or add new ones.
12. Offer Transparency
A recent study in the food industry showed that consumers expect brands to be transparent. They want to know all the background details of your products and company, and they want this information to be easy to find. Place return policies on your site and link to them from the home page. Add information on how your products are manufactured and details about your company leaders. Be as open and honest as possible.
Best Resources for Your Audience
Figuring out the best resources for your particular audience isn’t an easy task. You’ll need to try new things, do A/B testing and refine what you offer over time. The process of offering the best resources imaginable shouldn’t be a one-time task. Instead, you should continuously provide new and fresh material, try different tactics and ask for feedback fr