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Saturday, December 15, 2012

Is your online marketing falling prey to ADD ?

Most online readers are afflicted by a disorder. It is called ADD. Naturally, the majority of your online audience also has that. And it can really hurt your online marketing efforts. Read on to know what it is, and how to save your online marketing from falling prey to it.

We are living in an age of information overload. News, gossip, entertainment and everything else that we are interested in is available just a click away. Of course, there is social media too, with incessant updates on things that are sometimes useful, but mostly trivial and irrelevant.


online marketing best practices, do's and don'ts
Our minds have learnt to cope with this information deluge by having shorter attention spans. Which means, we tend to quickly flit from one thing to another. This coping ability has its downside too. It is called Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD). This is not an article on the medical aspects of this disorder, but has more to do with accepting this fact and tuning your business messaging to factor-in this reality. 

The average time someone spends on a web page is less than 1 minute. This figure being an average, it doesn't apply to all pages. Most readers skip away from a webpage within the first few seconds. In fact, research shows that the first 10 seconds of the page visit are critical, as that is when the majority of the readers leave. 


After spending a lot of money and effort on getting that precious potential client to visit your site, isn't it a pity that they leave your website without getting your message? Oh, by the way, you can measure how many people are leaving in a hurry, by monitoring your bounce rate. More on that in another article. 

So, what should you do, so that your visitors stay on and listen to your message? Here are some do's and don'ts.


         Do's:

  • Do make sure that the first few lines on your home page spell out your value proposition. Think of your customer as someone investing in your offerings, and get straight to the elevator pitch. This should give your reader a compelling reason to stay on.

  • Do use headlines, headers and sub-headers. This will let the reader jump to the information that they are looking for, instead of being overwhelmed by huge blocks of content. 
  • Do highlight your most important message.Give sufficient white space around it, because white space is a powerful way of drawing the reader's attention to something.
  • Do include a call-to-action early on. Preferably, right after the first paragraph on the webpage. 


         Don'ts:



  • Don't crowd the top fold of your webpage with a presentation or too many images.

  • Don't use flash on the home page. If the visitor's internet connection is slow, or if he is using a device that doesn't support flash as it should, you are losing the critical few seconds that you have to get their attention. 
  • Don't confuse the reader with too much information. Focus on benefits, and let them contact you for more information. Or give the additional information in a different page and link to it. 
  • Don't distract the reader with scrolling texts and updates. A serious client is not looking for updates on where you have been yesterday and how you are feeling about the weather. They need a solution for something and they need to know how your product or service is going to make their life easier. Period. 

This is not an exhaustive list. There are many more best practices to get the best out of your online marketing efforts. Watch out this space for more such articles.

As always, comments, likes and shares are most welcome!

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