|BlueSky Business Aviation News|
But what exactly does your website really do? Is it just a pretty face sitting idly, waiting for people to notice its beauty, but offering nothing besides looks? Or does it really perform, giving visitors not just static information, but dynamic content and tools to carry out tasks that help them get more out of your website?
This isnít to suggest that looks arenít important at all when it comes to your website. The better designed your site is, the easier and faster it will be to navigate and the more trust visitors will put into it. But taking the extra step of giving your site brains as well as looks will increase the engagement and satisfaction your visitors have with your site. And more engagement and satisfaction often translates into more sales.
The Right Tool for the Job
The most basic technique to make your website smarter is through interactive tools. These tools enhance the user experience, and do what the simple presentation of information canít - the ability to compare, contrast and manipulate information in ways that the user, rather than the website owner, defines.
For example, if your website sells planes, giving visitors the ability to use interactive range maps to determine the best plane for their particular needs is a feature that could help drive the visitor towards the sale. Similarly, the ability to compute operating costs from within your website allows the visitor to make judgments quicker than if they had to perform the calculations themselves.
Once the tool has been decided upon and prototyped, conducting user testing during development and before launching the new feature will allow you to fine tune the tool and perhaps think of additional features you might not have otherwise. And once the tool is in use, itís still important to get user feedback in order to keep up with changing demands.
Getting to Know You
Here are a few of the many ways visitor tracking can be used:
Looking Towards the (Potentially Scary) Future
While your website is getting smarter, the rest of the Internet and all the devices connected to it are getting smarter as well. The advent of voice-recognizing personal assistants like Siri has changed the way people access online data. Think back to the last time you visited a particular movie theaterís website instead of using Siri, or Google Now, or any of the other methods to aggregate showtime information. If youíre like most people, itís been a long while.
The increasing intelligence and popularity of these tools will make it less and less likely that actual human beings will want to visit websites with any regularity, and more likely that data-gathering bots will. At some point Siri could conceivably understand and accurately respond to the question ďWhatís the best plane for my needs?Ē If that happens, you better hope that your website is smart enough to be serving up the right information to the non-human visitors. Marketing departments can start sweating now, as carefully crafted marketing messages give way to cold hard data. At least for those willing to trust decision making to their phones.
Training Your Websiteís Brain
Making your website more than just an online brochure allows your visitors the ability to actively take part in the information you present, rather than just be a passive viewer. The added functionality in offering online tools and custom content will make a difference in the amount of time spent on your site, and its overall perception with the public. While these features do add quite a bit to the final cost of any website, the rewards far outweigh the costs. The extra user data you gain by visitor tracking alone can increase sales in a very real way.
Put Your Smarty Site to the Test
Enter your web page URL for a quick test of mobile-friendliness: http://bit.ly/19foFsH