8 Ways to Make Your Website More Effective

Arrow hitting a target. What kind of website is yours?

This site has, for a long time, been purely about delivering information and building an audience.

Now, however, its purpose is changing to building a list in readiness for products that I’m planning.

In the next couple of months you’ll see a move towards emphasising what I call my Key Page – which will be an opt-in page for my new list.

As I formulated my plans I thought a lot about the structure of this site and how it needs to change in order to meet its new purpose, as a result of which I zeroed in on 8 points.

8 Steps to improve the effectiveness of your website

These are the points I’m focusing on as I re-structure the site to improve its effectiveness, and I’ve set them out here as food for thought for you:

  1. Define a clear goal for your site – it may be to sell a product, build your list or refer buyers to an affiliate merchant site.
  2. Identify the page that’s going to deliver that goal – it may be a squeeze page asking for opt-ins, the shopping cart page or an affiliate pre-sell page. This is your Key Page.
  3. Ensure your internal links emphasise your Key Page rather than your Home page.
  4. Ensure the copy on your Key Page talks primarily about benefits (but supported by features), contains testimonials, a guarantee and has a clear instruction to visitors about what they should do next.
  5. Make the buying (or sign-up) process you put your customers through smooth, efficient and hassle-free (more on that here).
  6. Help first-time visitors understand what your site is about immediately they arrive: use a descriptive tagline, and a clear introductory paragraph. The Feature Box in Thesis is perfect for this.
  7. Use your About page to add details supporting your tagline and introductory paragraph, and make sure it promotes your Key Page.
  8. Give each post and page an objective that drives people towards your Key Page.

Some of those steps are already in place on this site, others will be put in place over the next couple of months. I’m looking forward to seeing how it turns out (and building a great new list!).

How about this – can you add just one more step? Let me know …


Martin Malden.

What do you think?

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Karen Smith Nov 18, 2011 @ 22:42

    I am just now making the transition into a home based business. Thank you for the info. I am trying to make sure i am delivering a clear concise message to my potential customers. Your tips are very appreciated!

    • Martin Nov 19, 2011 @ 7:58

      You’re welcome – glad it was useful 🙂



  • Colin Nov 22, 2011 @ 0:06

    Hi Martin

    always informative to read your blog……but a question. Is bounce rate important in terms of SEO and what is a good bounce rate ?

    • Martin Nov 22, 2011 @ 7:59

      Good question, Colin,

      To me it depends on what type of blog you’re running.

      For example, if yours is an educational site full of ‘How to’ posts, and your traffic comes largely from the search engines, you’re likely to have a high bounce rate. This is because people searching for information on how to do something will find it on your site, get the info they need, and then get back to finishing off what they were doing.

      If you’re writing a gossip blog, on the other hand, your bounce rate is likely to be lower (assuming your gossip is juicy!). That doesn’t necessarily mean the ‘How to’ blog is worse than the Gossip blog – is just means people use it in a different way.

      I don’t know what impact bounce rate has on the SEO effectiveness of a site, but I suspect that some of those conditional effects are built into the algorithms.



  • Octavio Nov 22, 2011 @ 3:09

    I will add that each page should have at least two “call to action” with precise instructions of what you want the visitor to do.

    Great list. I have been looking for this list for some time!

    • Martin Nov 22, 2011 @ 7:51

      Good call, Octavio, and one of those calls to action should be above the fold.



  • Paul B. Taubman, II Nov 22, 2011 @ 3:26

    Great list, Martin!

    In a nutshell, it is all about the planning. It’s funny how that always seems to be the case for a lot of things in life!

    I have worked with a lot of folks that want a website, but do not care for the planning stages. They just want something that they can point folks to so they can say, “See! That is my website!”

    I am looking forward to seeing the changes you are making.

    Be Well.

    • Martin Nov 22, 2011 @ 7:49

      Hi Paul,

      Thanks – and yes, planning is fundamental to being successful at anything, yet so many people just jump right in and play it by ear. The opposite, of course, is paralysis by analysis..!



      • Paul B. Taubman, II Nov 28, 2011 @ 23:35

        Finding the happy medium is the ‘secret.’ Thanks again!

        • Martin Nov 29, 2011 @ 7:39

          Absolutely! You’re welcome 🙂