The Wall Street Journal's observation about the hobby of "sweeping" is right on target for business blogging, I think. While sweepstakes have been around since the 1700"s, WSJ points out, they're more popular now. Why? (Here's the reason, I, a professional ghost blogger and blogging trainer am so interested in the article) "…because online entry forms are so easy to complete."
Unfortunately, I've found, the same is too often not true of many business blogs – nor is it true of many business websites, for that matter. Sites that make it difficult for online searchers to navigate make it easy for those searchers to "bounce away". You see, the crucial moment in any online reader's encounter with your blog is that very moment when he/she decides to "do something about it"! The searcher wants to:
- Call your company (Is the phone number in plain sight?)
- See more (Is it easy to click to a page of product pictures?)
- Know more (Are there easy-to-find links to landing pages or other sites?)
- Ask a question or submit a comment (Is that an easy process?)
- Request information (How easy is that to do?)
- Buy (Supposedly a result every business blogger covets, but how easy is this to do on your site?)
FutureNow's Brendan Regan rightly stresses that effective websites and blogsites "optimize a marketing outreach from the driving point to the landing page and on through to conversion."
According to Clare Rosenzweig of the Promotions Marketing Association, when companies like Coca-Cola run a sweepstake, their bottom line is that consumers have a positive experience with their brand. Are your online readers having a positive experience navigating your business blog?