Two hands in silhouette — with first fingers outstretched but not touching — with a red zigzag line between them

Your website’s not converting

Your website’s getting plenty of visitors, but they’re not converting into customers.

And that’s a worry.

Because a website that’s designed to make sales should be converting visitors into paying customers.

So why isn’t it working?

If you can be sure the majority of your website visitors are finding your website through search, using relevant search terms you’d expect a buyer would use, then your problem may be on the page itself. And it may be that your site isn’t connecting with your customers in the way it should be.

As a copywriter and content writer, I spend a lot of my time online, looking at the websites of other businesses. And I see the same customer connection fails time and time again.

4 Common customer connection fails

1. They don’t understand what you do

This is one of the biggest customer connection fails — and one of the biggest mistakes businesses make on their websites, period. Because if a would-be customer comes to your website and can’t understand what your company does, they’ll think they’ve come to the wrong place and leave. Just. Like. That.

When visitors arrive on your website, they should understand what you do and who you do it for within the first few seconds.

Let’s say you arrive on a website and see the following introduction.

Welcome to Water Solutions Limited
We provide innovative water solutions for all kinds of customers.

Would you know what this company does or who they do it for?

The area at the top of your home page is your chance to tell your ideal customers what you do. But many websites waste that opportunity with a vague or overly complex introduction that leaves them none the wiser.

  • Welcome to [Company Name]
    This a waste of a good headline — it says nothing and does nothing
  • innovative water solutions
    This is vague and tells the visitor nothing
  • for all kinds of customers
    No product or service is for all customers — you need to be specific about who you’re selling to.

Let’s try that again, but stronger and more specific.

Instant hydration with fresh, chilled drinking water on tap
Affordable water cooler rental for offices big and small.

In this example, the company is being much more specific about what they do and who it’s for.

So if, for example, an employer was looking to rent a low-cost water cooler for their office staff, they would instantly know they had come to the right place and should continue reading.

2. They don’t understand what you can do for them

Your potential customers want to feel acknowledged. They want to know you understand them and are the best company to solve their problem and help them find what they need.

Yet many websites use copy like this:

We’re committed to offering affordable holiday car hire and we pride ourselves on delivering our vision.

Copy like this is all about the business. What they’re committed to, their pride and their vision.

And where’s the customer in all of this?

Nowhere to be seen.

If your copy looks like this: full of we, us and our, your ideal customers won’t feel like you’re talking to them and they won’t feel a connection to your brand.

Copy for your customers should address them. It should be written for them, it should cover what’s important to them and it should make them feel acknowledged and understood.

So let’s try that again, replacing we and our with you and your, being more specific and focusing on what the customer needs to know.

You’ll be travelling in well-maintained, air-conditioned comfort with affordable holiday car hire that meets your needs and suits your budget.

This copy talks directly to the customer. It makes them feel the company understands what they need and knows what they’re looking for when they book a holiday hire car.

3. They don’t understand your value proposition

Your value proposition is important to your brand and your customers. Yet some brands don’t include it on their websites or don’t explain it clearly enough.

What is a value proposition?

Your value proposition should outline the benefits of buying from you and explain why your ideal customers should specifically choose you. This is usually expressed in a simple statement, close to the top of your home page.

Let’s start with a fictitious bad example.

Leicester’s most popular taxi company
We get you where you need to go

The heading falls flat because you can’t make a statement like that and then not back it up.

What makes you the most popular taxi company? And who says you are?

And getting people where they want to go isn’t a value proposition because it’s exactly what a taxi company is supposed to do.

As a much better example, here’s Uber’s value proposition for its taxi service:

Tap the app, get a ride
Uber is the smartest way to get around. One tap and a car comes directly to you. Your driver knows exactly where to go. And payment is completely cashless.

From this simple statement, we clearly understand what’s being offered, the benefits to us and what makes it different to other taxi firms.

For example, you might not always know exactly where you are when you call a taxi. And you might not know where you’re going well enough to give the driver instructions during the journey. So this all sounds reassuring.

It makes a good customer connection because the brand is showing they understand you and what you need.

4. They don’t understand who you are

Your ideal customers want to know who they’re buying from — or, rather — they want to trust who they’re buying from. And this is an important part of building a customer connection.

Now, of course, you can tell them who you are, but that’s not as powerful or convincing as it is when you show them who you are.

Let’s look at some examples.

Show them you’re an expert

Your ideal customers want to work with people who know what they’re talking about and who are expert in what they’re doing. There are plenty of ways to show this.

  • Show in your copy that you really understand their problem
  • Write blog articles that show your expertise and authority
  • Use testimonials and case studies to show how you’ve helped others
  • Display any professional accreditations and memberships you have.

Show them what you stand for

Every brand has its values and stands for something.

What you stand for can help with customer connection, by drawing likeminded people to you. People tend to buy from brands they like, trust and feel a connection to.

If you’re openly supporting a cause, it’s best to stick with something that mean something to you and/or makes sense for your brand. Ideally causes that won’t be found to conflict with your actions or deter your core customers. And avoid showing support for every cause as this can seem disingenuous and like you’re jumping on the bandwagon for attention.

Be consistent

One of the best ways to build trust is to be consistent and stay true to your brand.

To achieve this:

  • Use the same tone and style in all your communications
  • Make sure your messages are unified and always the same
  • Be clear on your position so you don’t contradict yourself.

Being consistent should be easy if it’s just you, but takes a bit more effort if you have different communications written by multiple people from different departments.

In this case you should have documentation that clearly states your brand’s position on important issues. And a tone of voice guide to show how your messages should be written and the language that should be used.

If you have a lot of communications that don’t follow the same style, a copywriter can help you bring them all into line and create a style guide for people to follow moving forward.

Want to make better customer connections?

If your website isn’t the money-making machine it should be, maybe I can help you fix it.

I’m Jenny Lucas, a freelance copywriter, website copywriter and content writer based in Leicester, UK.

I specialise in writing compelling website copy that will help you make a connection with your ideal customers and show them why they should buy from you.

Customer-focused copy that:

  • Clearly explains what you do and who for
  • Expresses your value proposition
  • Shows your expertise and brand values
  • Has the right tone and is consistently you.

To find out more, visit my main website or get in touch and tell me what you need.