You’ve put a lot of effort into your accounting firm’s website. Here are five ways to increase visitors’ engagement.
After you’ve enticed new visitors to your website, the last thing you want is to see them navigate away without exploring any further. That’s what is known as a bounce, and a high bounce rate is a sign your accounting firm’s content or site design might need some work. The lower your bounce rate, the more you’re connecting with your audience, so take a look at these tips to keep bounces to a minimum, adapted from Kelli Shaver’s informative article in Mashable. I intentionally deleted a few and focused on those that specifically apply to most firms.
- Avoid loading lag. Sites that take forever to load due to widgets and animation can lose you visitors in only a few seconds. Tech-savvy site owners or the experts you hire can set the page to lazy-load nonessential or third-party content, so viewers can see the most important thing – information about your firm – right away.
- Readability is critical. You can significantly enhance visitors’ enjoyment and comfort, which translate directly to the amount of time they spend on your site, by choosing high-contrast colors and easy-to-read fonts. Good contrast makes a big difference in readability, especially when the page is viewed on mobile devices or in suboptimal light conditions. Your content will be most accessible and easy to see if you go for colors that offer strong contrast, and that’s far more important than using the grey veiled background that speaks to your inner artist.
- Make navigation easy. To maintain engagement on your site, make it intuitive to locate information. Opt for reasonably large text on navigation bars that lead to sensibly labeled destinations. Dropdown menus are great on a desktop but impossible to use on mobile devices, so include multiple paths to the same pages. Let viewers navigate through links at the top, bottom and sides of your pages. Include a search function if the amount of content merits it, but if you do, be careful to ensure that it works well. Consider a site map for larger sites.
- Start simple. Your site may include a wealth of detailed information, but the message you’re sharing and the path to further details need to be clear from the first glance. Don’t let busy designs or text-laden home pages send confused viewers running to the accounting firm down the street. Be specific about what will happen if visitors click somewhere. You want to invite them in, make them comfortable and lead them on a journey from the simple to the complex based on their interests and needs.
- Try a responsive site design. Techy types can explore a responsive layout to maximize your site’s appeal across multiple devices. Only for advanced users, this strategy incorporates specific web development and coding techniques that make the site look good everywhere.
- You said there would be five! Yes, but I’m adding one to the original list because it’s so important for keeping visitors satisfied and engaged: Keep in mind that each browser presents a page in its own style – be absolutely sure your entire site is optimized for viewing on all the popular browsers! If it looks great in FireFox but like a cubist painting by a drunken monkey in Chrome, it’s not effective.
Once someone is interested enough in your firm to arrive at your site through a Google search, word-of-mouth referral or social media interaction, the important thing is to encourage further exploration by providing a comfortable, well-organized environment. With these tips in place, you’re well on your way to having a powerful and feng shui-correct online home for your accounting firm.
What do you think? What drives you away from a site and what makes you want to stay and learn more?