Online Sales

Chris Thomas

SmartCompany /

Never to forget the basics of website development. Certainly, if you want to increase your online sales and make more money from your website.

Make your site sell

This week I want to review another e-book – Make Your Site Sell! 2002 (MYSS! 2002).

I first read this book way back in 2001 and happened to read it again a few months ago. Even though it’s nearly six years old, most of the content still holds true today.

It reminded me never to forget the basics of website development. Certainly, if you want to increase your online sales and make more money from your website download this book. It’s free.

MYSS was written by a Canadian MD turned web entrepreneur called Ken Evoy. He’s considered to be one of the great internet gurus of modern times because of his own personal success, and the success he’s helped bring to millions of website owners (including my own internet ventures over the years).

According to www.alexa.com, Ken’s website is in the 650 most-trafficked websites in the world (Note: alexa can be a bit skewy and relatively easy to manipulate).

Ken likes to keep things simple, which is quite a revelation in this technical world we share! He boils the secrets of a website’s success to three simple aspects:

  • Develop a great product – position it for web sales.
  • Build a site that sells.
  • Attract targeted traffic to the site.

Certainly makes sense to me.

Ken goes into lots of detail about each of the three aspects listed above. The entire book itself is 802 pages long, so make yourself a cup of coffee and settle in. It’s an entertaining read.

Perhaps the easiest bit to get right is the product. If you’ve got a great product or service, you’re already well on the way!

The next section is about building a website that sells. One of the philosophies Ken really hammers hard is website copy. And I agree with him, if you begin your web copy with “Welcome to our website. We do this and we do that…”, you’re pretty much doomed.

Ken espouses the identification of your “unique selling proposition”; what makes you different to your competitors. He then teaches you how to integrate it into your headlines, so that it’s short, punchy and benefit-driven.

You’ve got to grab your visitor’s attention within seconds and convince them you’re the business or person they should be dealing with. If you don’t, they’re gone.

He talks about building trust with your visitor in a one-on-one sense, so he encourages the use of really personal, connecting words like “you”, “you’re” and “you’ll”. Testimonials are also important, as is an iron-clad guarantee.

The final section on traffic building is SEO/internet marketing 101. It discusses how search engines work, the importance of a listing in DMOZ.org (how to submit for inclusion without messing it up), how to optimise your site for Google and tonnes more.

One thing I will say about the book is to be a little wary of Ken’s serious sales pitch for one of his flagship products, “Site Build IT” (SBI). SBI is a home business-in-a-box software product that allows users to build a website and optimise it for affiliate income. Maybe I’m wrong, but to me it seems like a tonne of work for very little reward.

Of course there are plenty of people using SBI who make quite a bit of cash, but they’re usually the websites Ken promotes heavily with optimised links from his own powerful website. This helps them rank highly and gather targeted traffic. It’s all a bit artificial.

In the wash up though, it’s a great resource for novices and experienced internet folk alike. In fact, I’m off to re-work my own company website right now!

Highly recommended.

For more Online Sales blogs, click here.

 

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