Publishers' Top Web Site Blunders
by Marcia Yudkin
If you publish books, then it's tempting to put those
books front and center when structuring your web site.
However, if your company has a theme connecting the books
you publish, you'll attract more traffic and sell more if
you create an informational site on that theme that also
sells books rather than a blatant sales site.
Why do I say this, given that few publishers create their
web sites around this principle? Understand that most of a
publisher's potential book buyers are not on the Internet
in search of a book. They are hunting for information. If
they are consciously looking for a book, they would search
at Amazon or another online bookstore rather than do a
general web search.
And if they're looking for information on, let's say, cat
diseases and they get to your site and see that you are
selling books, they may immediately back out and click to
the next site that might have some free information about
cat diseases. But if they get to your site and see that
you're a portal for information on cats, they will probably
stick around long enough to understand that what they
really need to do to get the best answers to their
questions is to buy one of your cat health books.
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You can sell thus more books on the web by not leading with
a sales pitch but offering information that draws visitors
in and then selling to them. It's easiest to implement this approach if you publish
nonfiction and specialize in one topic area or a small
number of topics.
The next most common blunders made by publishers are
obstacles that make it difficult for people to place an
order, once they've decided to buy. Do you make it crystal
clear whether your books are paperbacks, hardcover books or
digital downloads? Do you explicitly and obviously state
shipping fees and shipping times? People should not have
to put an item in their shopping cart and begin to place
their order to learn shipping fees.
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Do you offer overnight delivery? Can you ship to post
office boxes? Do you guarantee your products and issue
refunds upon request? Do you ship overseas? All these
questions should be answered either on the page from which
someone places an order or on a FAQ (Frequently Asked
Questions) page or both.
According to Internet marketer Randy Gage, "The confused
mind always says no." Thus, two keys to a successful
publisher's web site are building an information-rich
destination for information seekers on your topic(s) and
eliminating all the annoyances that might get in the way of
a "yes, I'll buy."
Copyright 2009 Marcia Yudkin.
All rights reserved.
an objective, constructive review of your web site.
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