Internet Tips

Internet Tip of the Week: First Impressions

First impressions are crucial if you hope to do business on the Web. After you refine your ads, and if you make your pitch to a targeted group, you will start to get visitors to your website. Here is where many would-be entrepreneurs drop the ball.


Putting up a website is not a difficult task, but designing a good one is, and if you don’t pay attention, it might be working against you. Think about it; the website is not only the first impression of you and your business. It is crucial to your success or failure.

Internet Tip of the Week

People don’t waste a whole lot of time when visiting a site. If it isn’t professional-looking, they may “click away.” While looks are important, you must spend time on developing good copy.
Copywritten by affiliate programs has been seen over and over. While it may have been effective at one time, it is so overused that people immediately recognize it for what it is.

In addition to good copy, which of course, has no spelling, grammar, or punctuation errors, it has to state what you are offering clearly. Many websites offer a real challenge to try to figure out what they are trying to sell. The offer should be the first thing they see. The information must also flow logically and not leave a lot of questions unanswered.

In addition to complete information on your offer, it must have a call to action, which entices the visitor to purchase from you.
It must also have an order form or instructions that are easy to follow. It is also a real plus to let the prospect know a little bit about you. Your picture on the site can go a long way to help instill confidence.

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There is some confusion on the value of links. Some advocate that a good website should be divided into separate sections connected by links. Others feel that a single long web page will score higher in the search engine rankings.

There are basically two types of links. One goes to a completely separate web page and is considered an external link. Another type is an internal link. Which point to different “parts” within the same web page. Both have value. However, internal links are a little friendlier. If someone clicks on one and the next “part” logically flows from the previous one, people will be more inclined to read on.

While it is a good idea to have your links on the side of the page, you should avoid using frames, which divides the page into two logical pieces that can be independently manipulated.
Currently, sites constructed with frames are not searched engine friendly, although this could change.

Links should be clear as to where they will take you. It is crucial that the titles of the links make sense and actually take someone to that information. Each site should have unique links, and it is not a good idea to have information in the target that is not specified in the link.

If you have someone design the site for you, remember that their expertise is in website design, and most likely, they will know little, if anything, about what you are doing. They can construct the site and make it look good, but the copy and information flow is your responsibility. You should always take a break from the copywriting, and if at all possible, have someone else proof your work for grammar. Also, you have to be careful of words that pass spell check but are actually an error. Don’t confuse words like “there” and “their.”

Once you have the basic framework finished, it is now time to test it. Again, try to corral as many people as possible to review it.
Is it a clear and effective presentation? You should probably avoid friends unless you are sure they will give you an honest evaluation.

The first impression your website makes is crucial to success.
If people have to “jump through hoops” to find out about your offer, or if it doesn’t portray a professional image, the odds are they won’t buy.

Did you know that subscribers to Bob Osgoodby’s Free Ezine, the “Tip of the Day,” get a Free Ad for their Business at his Web Site? Great Business and Computer Tips – Monday. Wednesday. And Friday. Instructions on how to place an ad are in the Newsletter.