You’ve heard it before: Make the content of your web pages as relevant and specific as possible to the audience you’re trying to attract. Find out which keywords and phrases your audience is using to search for the services and products that you offer. Feature those words and phrases prominently on your web pages, and include other content (articles, photos, media) directly related to them.
All very true. Smart marketers recognize that web surfers increasingly can zero in on the exact product or service they’re interested in. As a result, many web sites and pages are very narrow in their subject-matter focus. In addition, many competitors in a given category offer nearly the same items at prices very similar to each other’s.
What’s the impact on people visiting these sites? Sooner or later, it’s boredom: you and your competitors all feel pretty much the same to the visitor. So . . . the more competitors you have, and the more your audience tends to analyze or comparison-shop for the product or service you offer, the more that your web site (and all your marketing communications) needs to engage the audience’s heart and mind.
Now, let’s not forget: Job #1 of your web site is still to provide content that’s relevant to the needs of your audience. That content, most notably the top-performing keywords and phrases in your category, is also essential to pulling in visitors from Google and other search engines. But once they’re on your site, what can you do to ensure that their experience there is not just relevant, but enjoyable . . . even memorable? Lots of things, actually. Let’s start with this:
It’s now easier than ever to have video on your web site. You don’t even have to produce a video of your own. Sites like YouTube and Yahoo provide the HTML code for nearly all the videos, right there next to the screen where the video plays on their site.
Find a video you like, and that you think your audience will like, right-click on the box labeled “Embed Code,” select save from the dialog box that appears, and e-mail the HTML code to your web master. OK, if that sounds too complicated, just do this instead: Find the video you like on YouTube or Yahoo, then tell your web master to go pick up the embed code for that video and put it on your web site.
The video you choose does NOT have to relate directly to your business. Remember, people who visit your web site are interested in more, much more, than just your product or service, as long as it provides some value to the visitor. Allow them to take a break from the routine of that search, and start building a relationship with them, by featuring a music video, a how-to video, or just a slide show of interesting photos (you can pick up plenty of those on the video sites) on your web site.
A word of caution: Although the video doesn’t have to relate directly to your business, remember that its tone and content will reflect on your business. Choose carefully, and before adding the video to your site, get feedback on it from a few of your best customers, vendors, or advisors. Explain to them that you are trying to make your site more interesting, enjoyable, and memorable for the people who visit it. Once you add the video to your site, consider adding a “Rate This Video” graphic beside it (your web master can add this for you easily).
A well chosen, non-promotional video on your site will do more than simply engage your visitors. It will increase the time they spend on your site—and in some cases, give them a reason to come back—which in turn, increases the chances that they will buy from you.