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The mindset of the website visitor and how to persuade them
2010-06-18: The mindset of someone browsing your website is fundamentally different to that of someone browsing a catalogue or a shop. Online visitors are there for a reason. If you don't satisfy that, they leave. It's what I call a cashpoint mentality.
That's the root of the idea of having user pathways through your site. You need to know the main goals that people have when they arrive on your website, then you give each of them a clear navigation route to their goal.
Forget talking about your latest whatever (unless you're Apple, in which case your latest whatever is what everyone wants). Make sure people can reach what they want when they arrive on your site.
And definitely get rid of distracting graphics and pop ups. Also, make sure it's absolutely clear on each page that it is what the customer wants: that's a page title/headline thing usually.
I'm not saying I do that every time, not every client has a usability budget to get much beyond a nice looking site that 'works' in the sense that it doesn't die. If you have .. please feel free to get in touch :-)
But the point is, your competitors are probably doing this. If they do it better than you they'll win business that could be yours and you'll die a miserable death in the poorhouse. Your last vision will be looking out of the window at your competitor sailing past on his yacht.
I can give you that competitive edge but of course, there's only one of me so look sharp or I'll soon be gone on some other project.
The managing director of Blue Tree Services likes this sort of thing: "I saw what you've done on the landing pages and got the 'wow' feeling. It's clear, clean, really beautiful. I really love what you've done." Even sole traders like it "John, it's absolutely brilliant. THANK YOU SO SO MUCH."
The main point, though, is this. You're a small business. I'm a small business. We think alike. We both want value for money. I charge for my time .. no fixed price nonsense here where it only takes half the time I said and I pocket the profit.
And I'm absolutely focused on results. I watch what happens as a result of everything I do, so I learn from my actions with all my clients. When I come to you, I've not only got two decades of marketing experience and a first class degree in Internet computing to bring to bear, but seven years of experience in building and marketing websites where I act, measure, review, and learn. I'll only recommend to you what I've seen working with my own eyes.
So, your website may look nice. It may contain all the information you want to publish. But does it work for your visitors? Implement the tips above and see the difference. If you need anything more, get in touch.
And that, apparently, is how you persuade people.
I would add a few other things to that (I'm preferring neuroscience stuff atm), but I just thought I'd illustrate the idea (badly, probably).

By John Allsopp
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