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Symptoms of Failure – 5 Reasons Why Professional Web Sites Fail to Convert Visitors (Part II)

January 7, 2009 | Gitanjali Verma
In my earlier blog I discussed the symptoms of falling conversions, and this time I am going to focus on what are those deficiencies or problem areas that lead to a decline in conversion rates.

It has often been noticed that after an initial spurt in conversion rate, many successful web sites are not able to sustain the high conversion rates in the long term. The decline starts with a noticeable dip and then gradually increases to alarming levels.

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So the question arises, what are the factors which cause a fall in conversions and is it possible to arrest the decline in time to avoid damage?

Let’s first look at the reasons behind the overall decrease in the conversion rate which can several such as:

Problem 1: Lack of Relevancy and Accuracy

Many site owners pour time, money and energy into search engine optimization and pay-per-click advertising to bring more visitors to their site. With good optimization, you can make visitors visit your site but you can’t compel them to buy the product or services offered by your site. For this the site must be high in relevancy and accuracy factor.

Solution: The keywords you are using for promoting your site must be relevant to your site. Suppose you are selling a particular brand of cosmetic products for middle-aged women, then in no way should the visitors have an illusion that you are selling a product for teenagers or other age groups. If it is so, there would be negative publicity for the web site which will eventually turn the traffic away.

Problem 2: Absence of Clarity

The message you want to deliver to the targeted audience must be very clear and lucid. In no way should the message have dual meanings. This primarily is related to the visibility aspect of your web site. To explain this here is an example.

Your site deals in dark chocolates but when a visitor goes to your site he gets to find a wide variety of other chocolates too. He gets confused and leaves the site without purchasing anything.

Solution: Be focused on what you are selling. Moreover the features of the product must be described in the best possible way to make the user clear about it. No need to confuse the visitors by writing too many unnecessary things.

Problem 3: First scroll look not being available

Visitors will not be impressed with your web site if it contains either flickering or scrolling text which is not good from the usability aspect. It usually distracts the user from concentrating on some particular information and distracts the user unnecessarily.
Solution: Hence, it is always advisable to present the most crucial bit of content in a space on the screen that the user can see without scrolling. This space should be directly within the main content area of your web site.

Problem 4: Lack of a proper Call-to-action

There can also be some defect in the navigational flow of your site and the placement and nature of “Call-to-Action”.

By Call-to-Action we mean the request to the user to do something – such as clicking on a link, filling out a form, taking a newsletter subscription, or adding a product to the shopping basket. Generally web owne

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