By Alli Summerford
October 15, 2001
What makes a web site sticky? That is, what makes users stay in your site once they find it, and what makes them want to return? One of the primary reasons users stick around and continue to return is content – information. After all, that is why they went to your site in the first place. This month I will talk about ways to add content to your site, making it the stickiest site in cyber-town.
First, ask yourself why users would come to your site. What would they be looking for? If you have a real estate business, they are likely looking for information on listings, the area in which you do business, and how to get in touch with you. At a minimum, your site should provide them with that information. But what else might they also be interested in? Perhaps they will also need a mover, moving tips, home-buying tips, home-selling tips; or information on local utility companies, banks, insurance companies or contractors. Next, ask yourself what are your customers’ most commonly asked questions? Why not use your web site to provide them with the answers. Finally, share your expertise with them. Not only will you be providing them with meaningful information, you will be showing yourself to be competent and knowledgeable – just the qualities that will lead them to hire you.
After you have some ideas for adding content to your site, it is important to update the information featured in your site regularly, and let your visitors know that you do so (refer to 1st Quarter article on email distribution). A “News” section can be a great way to keep things current and provide an incentive for visitors to return. Consider dedicating a small section on your home page to headlines with a link to that story deeper within your site.
To summarize, consider developing content for your web site in the following areas:
- Information on ancillary services and products;
- Answers to customers’ most frequently asked questions;
- Expertise that illustrates your value to them;
- Regular updates with news items and information of interest and value.
By doing these few things, you can add more value to your users’ experience at your site. They are then more likely to stay longer and return more often. In addition, you increase the chances that they will then tell other people about you, your site, and something they learned there.
Content: it keeps visitors interested, builds your reputation, and breathes life into your web property. If you would like to talk about how to implement these ideas into your site, feel free to call (205.298.7655) or email me.