There are a lot of people who can make a decent looking website. And many designers can create beautiful designs that can be used on a website. And I think we create both great designs and functional websites, but what really sets us apart is that we focus on creating websites to achieve a specific goal.

This is important, because if you have a website, you probably have a goal. And if you don’t, you probably should. What do you want your user to do on your website? How will that benefit you?

It’s kind of funny, but you need to design your website for your user so it ultimately benefits you.

So what does this mean anyway? Recently I was on a website for a dog breeder (not one of the ones we’ve made.) Someone asked me to take a look because they really liked the site. And it was beautiful. Beyond reproach graphically, no detail was overlooked when it came to the design of the site. Perfect fonts, colors balanced artistically, every button a masterpiece. They had a fantastic grid showing all available puppies, with their name and price and when you clicked through you could see all the pertinent details of the puppy.

But that’s where the site started to fail. If I was in the market for a new puppy, and I wanted this particular puppy, I had all it’s information such as birthday, parents, colors, vaccinations… but there wasn’t a single button or note about what I should do if I wanted to adopt this puppy. That was the end of the funnel.

If the goal was for me to see and learn about this puppy, then this site would have met it’s goal. But the goal is for users to adopt the puppies. And so this goal fell short. Every available puppy should have had an “Adopt Me!” button it that would take me to a page telling me how to adopt, what the next steps are, and a form to contact the breeder to get started. So this site, as beautiful as it was, totally missed the mark.

After realizing there was no call-to-action on the puppies, I started to look around the site and couldn’t find any information anywhere about how to adopt a puppy. There was a contact page and phone number and form, but no specific information on the adoption process.

Desired Action

The website forgot the last step in the sequence.

Website users have questions

If you haven’t answered all your users’ questions when they get to the end of your sales funnel, then you are going to lose sales. When I got to the puppy page of the site, I might have been ready to take the next step (theoretically, I already have two dogs) but the sales funnel ended without asking for the sale.

It’s important when you set up a website that has a clear goal to make sure you address all your users’ questions and provide them with a clear path to the sale. Will some people know to call or fill out the form? Sure. But some people will stop because you haven’t given them the next step. If your website goal is to sell something, not asking for the sale with a clear call-to-action will result in a lower conversion rate.

Having a beautifully designed website is only one aspect of this process. Having a strategy and sales funnel for making that website work is another aspect. And it’s just as important, if not more important.

Don’t lose your users by not asking for the sale. Have a strategy, set up a sales funnel, and make sure it works.

Amy Masson

Amy is the co-owner, developer, and website strategist for Sumy Designs. She's been making websites with WordPress since 2006 and is passionate about making sure websites are as functional as they are beautiful.

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