Small Business Brief

Customer Service, Marketing

Great Website Ideas And Tricks To Improve Your Customer Retention

Have things started to plateau a little with your website? Are you struggling to find great ideas online? What you should be doing is asking yourself what works for you when you are surfing the web. You should be looking at which website ideas work on you, and then figuring ways you may implement the same ideas on your own website.

Here are a few website ideas to get you started.

Allow Customers to Earn Points That Are Ever-Present on The Screen

Some companies are doing the points thing right and others are not. Supermarket grocery stores have club card points, and they may be more successful if they had a widget with a running total displayed somewhere on the grocery ordering screen. Google business has a slightly better method where they send you a monthly email showing how many points you have earned.

Steam has got it all wrong to the point where most people do not even know their profiles are receiving points and getting leveled up. Let users earn points by whichever means fits your business and give them permanent rewards for their points (or allow them to apply them as discounts towards future purchases). The points system can be used to reward loyal customers over long periods of time.

Remove All Forms of Popup (Including Cookie Popups)

The numbers supporting the use of popups are based on studies financed by the companies selling popups. First-time users can just about tolerate popups for email subscriptions, special offers, and free e-books. People who are visiting more than once will hate them to the point of finding another website.

Can you imagine how much Amazon would suffer if it installed popups? Do you know any mainstream supermarket grocery delivery services that have pop-ups?

If you are using them, get rid of them right now. As for cookies requests, run a banner along the bottom that enables people to accept or deny.

Accept Website Ideas From Commenters

This idea wouldn’t have worked ten years ago, but YouTube has set up a culture where commenters feel like they have power. So much so that comment sections for the female-led Ghostbusters needed to be closed because of the things being said. Popular shows like Honest Trailers and CinemaSins are taking ideas directly from commenters and then naming the commenters in the next video.

Apply this method to your website in the same way that does by which people are able to request which products are reviewed next, or which issues are covered next. Alternatively, you could use the method of allowing people to contribute directly so they have a vested interest in returning. Note though, this can backfire as it did with FunnyJunk since they now host epic amounts of spam, copyrighted material, and very disturbing user-submitted material.

If you are taking ideas and content directly from users, then moderate and administrate before publishing.

Remove Any Auto-Start Videos

Video ads that auto-start are probably the worst type of spam advertisement because they force the user to watch and listen.

Fox News simply places the video on its website and then waits for the user to click it, and they then allow the video to follow the person around the page. YouTube has a similar function where you can open several videos in new tabs and they only start running when you click on a tab.

Videos that automatically start when a page loads (be it an ad or otherwise) are great ways to scare away traffic forever.

Improve Your Website Speed With Lazy Loading

Lazy loading (also known as on-demand loading) is a piece of software that only loads the piece of the website that a user is viewing. Other parts of the web page do not load until needed.

It was popularized during the first election bid of Barack Obama where his website was a single page that scrolled on for a long time. However, the massive page was not loaded all at once. It loaded as you scrolled down.

This commercial flood insurance uses the same website design technique. If you visit their website, the part you can see, aka the top third of the page, loads almost instantly. As you scroll down the page, the other pieces quickly load up and appear.

You don’t need statistics to recognize that faster loading times means better customer retention.

Remove Those Darn Plugins And Keep Clearing Space

If you are using a content management system (e.g. WordPress, Magento, Wix, etc.), then you are probably using plugins, and it is time to start uninstalling. Despite the evidence that plugins cause loading lags, there is also the fact of simple redundancy. There are thousands who have contact form plugins that they have never used and floating social media buttons that are simply unneeded.

Once you have cleared some space, try looking for external hosting for your larger files. For example, you shouldn’t be hosting your own videos when you can feature a YouTube video right in your website. You can fill up YouTube’s servers for free rather than using your own. Plus, having content on YouTube also helps you promote your website through their social network.

Do not take the advice of those that say you should reduce the size of your images to improve loading times but do take a considered approach when you are uploading. For example, do you need to upload the 2100px x 2100px image for a logo? Sure, your website is going to reduce its size accordingly, but it still has to load the large image before it resizes it, which is going to increase the time between page rendering and page usability.

The Conclusion Is to Remove Annoyances And Barriers

The online culture has become apathetic in many instances. Webmasters are filling their websites with annoying elements and barriers to sales, and they are doing it because others are doing it. One could liken it to the schoolchildren who start smoking because all the other kids are smoking.

What is more mind-boggling is that the elements people find annoying themselves are the same elements they enter into their websites.

Small annoyances may not bother first-time visitors, but they weigh down those who would visit frequently. Barriers to sales, such as slow loading times, difficult to operate checkouts, etc., are frustrating enough for people to actively search for alternatives. Sometimes, the best website ideas are to strip a website of its little annoyances and its mildly frustrating elements.

Want more blog posts from business experts? Then, you need to check out some of the other posts right here on our site.