I see a lot of mistakes when I search the internet constantly looking for examples of great website design.  I look at how these websites incorporate their online marketing.  While this approach is excellent for staying on top of current trends, I also search for examples of poorly designed websites.  I look for marketing techniques that just don’t work.  I believe that learning from the good and bad is an excellent way of rounding out one’s experience level.  Understanding what makes good and bad marketing helps you explain to clients what works and what doesn’t work.

Respond to inquiries

Some website owners establish a beautiful website complete with an online contact form and then completely ignore potential clients when they submit a request.  Some owners take their time responding to requests.  Today’s online users expect a quick response to online requests they propose to businesses.  Users will quickly seek another business if one owner is slow to respond.  By slow, I mean not responding within one hour.  I know that some will argue that it is impossible to respond to all requests within one hour but that is exactly what online users expect.  Maybe it is best not to have a contact form at all if you are not prepared to reply to requests in a timely manner. Don’t make the same mistakes.

I have seen several websites that promise a loyalty reward program to their customers.  Having a loyalty reward program is not a bad idea, however, using the signup information to gain email addresses and send spam is not a good idea.  Clients will become upset very quickly.  If you wish to grow your email marketing list, ensure that you are upfront with your intent.  Don’t trick your customers.

Don’t fool visitors

Some websites use a false scarcity tactic hoping to get customers to quickly act before the item disappears.  One problem with this approach is that visitors will remember which products have used the scarcity tactic and will look at future attempts with suspicion.  Customers will avoid purchasing items newly listed as being scarce.  Only use the scarcity tactic for legitimately scarce items. Don’t make the mistake of fooling visitors.

Having a beautiful website is only part of your online marketing plan.  Ensure that you are prepared to provide fast answers to contact forms.  Also, be upfront with any email harvesting programs (such as loyalty reward programs).  Finally, don’t use the scarcity tactic for non-scarce products.  Avoid these online marketing mistakes and your website will definitely help your business succeed.

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