If you have a business idea which involves the internet there are a number of factors to consider. A successful web business is one which gets your prospective customer to purchase from you and that must be the sole focus of your website. You want to make a sale, and if you are in a home business where the customer can buy from you again and again (and you most certainly should be) you want to have them return and spend money with you over a long period of time.

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You can help ensure customer longevity by following our 3 keys to web business success,

1. Website Design

It is vital to consider very carefully the design of your website. In turn this means that you need to consider what you want to achieve and how you want to achieve it. Your website may be promoting a single product today, which is fine, in which case you probably just need one page with a call to action at the end of it. However, if you have a range of products you need to decide where you want your prospect to go. You must take him by the hand and lead him there. In most cases this means an uncluttered web page without banners or other distractions.

How many times do you see a website with flashing banners that almost force you to stop reading? Unless the sole purpose of the website is to earn money from Google Adsense or from affiliate commissions, why go to all the trouble of getting visitors to your site and then invite them to go elsewhere? It makes no sense, and yet you see it all the time.

Your website design is crucial to the success of your web business. This means uncluttered, straightforward and easy to read. This last point is critical. You see sites that use reverse-out (that’s white printing on a black background). Reverse-out is proven to be 7% harder to read than black on white. Others have, say, a light grey font on a light blue background and the font is so small that some visitors will be virtually unable to read it for that reason alone. While you don’t want your font to SHOUT at your visitor, you need to make sure they can read it.

Website design is the most important factor in your web business success. It does not matter if it does not have all the bells and whistles beloved of so many “professional” website designers. You are actually far better off without them, but many designers feel they have to include them in order to justify their rather exorbitant fees.

Here is a link where you can see the author’s top ten website designs – as he admits, this is a matter of personal preference, but he gives his reasons: http://www.webdesignfromscratch.com/web-design/10-best-designed-web-sites/

By way of comparison, you can make your own mind up about this website: www.digitalhollywood.com. I just wish someone could please explain the purpose of this site!

2. SEO

Then there is SEO, three letters that are enough to dampen the enthusiasm of the most determined online entrepreneur. Yet you must take account of SEO. You want your website to be on the first page of Google. If it isn’t then no more than 10% of searchers, at the most, will find you. Furthermore, over 50% of clicks are on the top three results, even if you are on the first page.

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SEO used to mean having your keywords in bold, underlined, capitalized and repeated 37 times on every page. To an extent, WordPress is partly responsible for perpetuating this theory with its’ SEO checker. However, since the Penguin and Panda updates this is no longer the case. Google now wants to see (thank heaven) content that reads naturally. Indeed if you now engage in what is known as keyword stuffing, then your website will be penalised for it.

Probably the most difficult part of SEO is backlinking. There are companies that will sell you a million backlinks to your website in much the same way as you can buy Facebook “likes”. However, Google has spotted that one and wants “natural” backlinks as well. If your brand new website launched last week suddenly has 5,000 backlinks, Google is going to know that they are fakes, since getting natural backlinks takes time. Certainly, there are ways around this, but if you don’t have the time to invest, then you may be better off employing an outworker or VA. Whatever you do, however, know that SEO is crucial to the success of your web business idea.

3. Follow up

The third key to web business success is follow up. You may be familiar with the saying that it takes a visitor seven trips to your website before making a purchase. That, of course, is a nonsense since some of them will purchase on the first visit. Some will never purchase at all. It also depends on what you are selling. If you are selling a $7 e-book, then many visitors will either buy or not on the first visit and if they don’t do so will probably not return – unless you persuade them otherwise. Equally, if you are selling combine harvesters at $400,000 a time your chances of a sale on the first visit are not that great, but your visitor is likely to make several return trips for more information.

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What is obvious, though, is that you need some way to engage with your visitor in order to get him to return. One of the most common ways of doing this is to offer someĀ freebiesĀ or very low-priced product in order to get the email address. Then you can continue to market to the subscriber with follow-up emails from your autoresponder.

A low-priced entry product is actually the best way of doing this. The world is full of freebie-seekers who will never buy anything at all. What most marketers on the internet will agree on, however, is that a list of buyers – even though they have only spent little money – is worth ten times a list of freebie-seekers. They have proven themselves to be buyers and if you communicate with them in a good way they will buy form you again. And again.

So these are 3 keys to web business success. There are other factors involved also, but these are considered to be the most important if you want to build a successful home business or web business.

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