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According to the State of Retailing Online report released today, Online retailers plan major investments in improved web site design.

“88% of the 150 retailers responding to the survey have prioritized improving product detail pages, 80% adding online images and 76% A/B testing of offers and promotions. In fact, 14 types of web site improvements were rated investment priorities by more than half of the merchants participating in the survey.”

This movement is welcomed here at Wpromote, as we are constantly stressing to our clients the need for a site that captures user attention and landing pages that convert at a high rate. Often users who are new to Search Marketing ignore the aesthetics and move right into the “how much traffic can I get and what does it take to be number one?” I constantly encounter greenhorns and professionals alike that are too eager to increase visibility and efficiency to take a step back and look at the actual site they are promoting.

By taking a portion of your marketing dollars and putting them towards site improvement, you are ultimately increasing the worth of each dollar you put towards marketing in the future. Today’s users are becoming increasingly savvy and competition in the search engines is growing daily. Your customer is only a back button away from your competition at all times. By keeping your site up to date or ahead of the times you are able to create buyer confidence and generate return visitors.

When talking to potential customers about site quality and effectiveness of landing pages, I generally check to make sure that they have a few basic things. The first is good content related to their major terms with a strong call to action. It is also key to have a site structure that is easily navigable. Contact information should be made visible on all main pages. This not only helps users reach you, but also increases legitimacy in eyes of the consumer.

Overall, the biggest step is overcoming aesthetic hurdles. Many users have had the same look on their site since it was created in the 90s. Sometimes you have to break it to people that the flying toaster no longer inspires user confidence…

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