Last week we wrote about the ‘6 Reasons why your insurance brokerage needs a good website’, but this week we’re going to give a few tips on how to improve your website. You see, in this day and age it’s just not good enough to have a plain website with a couple of pages and some info about your business.
There are millions of websites launched every year and with such growth and competition it is important to keep your website fresh, with up to date information information to keep engagement with your audience up.
Besides keeping your audience engaged, there are number of other things you can do to ensure that your users keep coming back for more.
- Page speed
One of the things guaranteed to annoy your audience is waiting for a page to load. There are now so many people accessing the web using their smart phones or through other platforms and you really have to ensure that you cater to all (if not most of them). If you think your site is loading ‘at a good speed’, know that if it takes longer than two seconds you’ll lose around 87% of your audience. Even though it’s not uncommon for people to queue in the UK, when it comes to the internet people aren’t good at waiting around and will be happy to vote with their fingers and tap away to the next site. There are plenty of online services that will conduct a website speed test so there’s really no excuse for not checking it.
- Use colour to woo your clients
Think about the colours that you’re using for your website. Do they ‘scream’ too much and put people off or are they strategically chosen to get the most out of your user. There’s a lot of studies done on the psychology behind certain colours, so make sure that you consult an expert on the design of your site – right down to the buttons. It’s not as easy as picking your favourite colour!
- Hyperlinking is vital
Links, internal as well as external, are very important because they can boost your ranking on search engines. Google wants to see you linking to authority websites so if you’re referring to something that you sourced from another site make sure there’s a link to that page. It’s just another way to show the search engine that you are including good quality information to your website.
Internal links are vital too. They will encourage the user to engage more with your site and read other bits of important information contained therein. Using links is a good thing but make sure they are relevant to what you are talking about.
- Use images and break up text
Don’t just have reams of text – it can bore your user. What’s more, you’re likely to get more of them. According to one study, websites that contain images get 94% more views than the ones that don’t. So don’t feel bad about breaking up the text with some relevant pictures as it will help drive more visitors to your website.
Get creative! Images can consist of photographs, infographics (which can be really handy when explaining how to process an insurance claim, for instance) and GIFs, etc. It’s best to create your own images but if you’re not good at taking photographs there are plenty of websites that offer free stock images to download such as pixabay.com, pexels.com and picjumbo.com. If you have the budget to download better quality images, consider websites such as istockphoto.com or shutterstock.com.
- Create engaging videos
Just like images, videos have become an an important tool for websites and to engage the user. Consumers prefer to see content in this way. And what better way is there than to explain a complex thing like insurance? Video will also make for a better, all round website experience. Use it to market your products and inform the consumer. You don’t have to be a professional to make a video either. You can create videos from scratch or transform your articles into videos in minutes using tools like Lumen5.com. Lumen5 have a free package but if you need more than the basics there are packages for $49 (Pro) and $99 (Business) a month. Simply post the videos on your website as well as on youtube.com and other social media channels such as Facebook and Twitter to gain more traction.
- Enable your customer to talk to you with chatbots
Even though you may prefer to interact with your customer face to face but this is no way to woo younger customers. According to one report, Millennials and those from Generation Z communicate digitally more than they do in person and are particularly reliant on mobile phones and apps. If your users are unable to liaise with you in the way that they want they are likely to go elsewhere. Talk to experts about getting a chatbot for your website – they will enable your business to be more efficient, responsive and focused on what your customers want. If they get personalized attention and an instant answer to their queries they’re likely to leave your site more satisfied. What’s more, chatbots have the added benefit of talking to your customers 24/7, which means that even while you’re sleeping you could be doing business and building relationships.
- Sort out your 404s
Besides dealing with a slow website there’s nothing more infuriating than a site that has a few errors on it. Users will simply get annoyed if they encounter a 404 error and probably move on! If a user still happens to land on a 404 page there are ways you can make it more user friendly – and even amusing. Witty, well-designed error pages could give your user a bit of a laugh and make them more likely to forgive you and continue navigating your site. Here are a few clever examples, that could give you some inspiration.
- Make your online forms easy to use
Back in January we wrote about the ‘10 Ways you can improve your insurance application claim forms’. Insurance forms can be an absolute nuisance to fill out – even online, but there are things you can do to make sure they are simpler to understand and navigate. Be clear about why you need certain information and ditch the use of technical language.
Ease of use is important too. Few things are more infuriating than a form that won’t let you progress to the next stage because it ‘doesn’t like’ how you input the information. If you need your clients to fill in the form in specific way then offer an explanation that can lessen their frustration and make them do it right the first time. If you think your forms are good enough test them by filling them out yourself. If the process annoys or infuriates you – then you’re doing it wrong!
- Ensure your website is responsive
People peruse sites using many different devices and you’ve got to ensure that your website can be seen properly regardless of whether someone is navigating it on a computer, tablet or smartphone. What’s more, Google now penalizes sites that aren’t mobile-friendly. In other words, if you have an old website that’s not responsive you will not rank highly in searches. According to a Forbes report, you could lose 5-30% of leads just from not catering to those viewing your site on mobile phones.
- Let your clients know where they are
If you’ve got a survey, questionnaire or form on your website that you need clients to fill out to provide your company with more information then let them know where they are in the process. This can be done by way of a progress bar or breadcrumb and prove some reassurance that the end is in site. Time is precious – regardless of whether you are a business or an individual!
- Write good content
Make sure you offer intelligent information that’s relevant to the type of customer/user that visits your site. If you’re an insurance broker, for example, maybe include a blog post about how your clients should file their claim or give them tips about how to choose a good car and home insurance product. The days of writing some content just so you can get better rankings are long over. You need your readers to interact and engage with your website, so make sure your content gives them some food for thought.
- Review your website on a regular basis
When last have you updated your website? If it’s been years then it may be time for a change. New technologies and feature are developed constantly and the last thing you want is to be left behind. You don’t necessarily need to have a complete redesign but it’s important to have a professional involved in the process to ensure that your website contains everything that you need it to.
It’s important to have a strong online presence and we’re happy to provide you with a fully-functioning future proof website, designed to enhance your brand, promote your products and provide an efficient, easy portal for your customers. For more information about how we can help you, click here.