Episode 41

Maximizing your website for converting digital products

I posted a question on Twitter and Threads recently that I was planning solo episodes. I asked, what are you interested in learning about digital products? Fatima responded and said, maximizing your website for converting digital products. I love to talk about websites and have a ton of tips for you in this episode.

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[00:00:00] Rene: Hey everyone. Welcome to Your First Digital Product, a show that helps maxed-out service providers create their first digital product so they can gain an additional income stream, grow their impact without increasing one-on-one work and experience more time freedom. On the show, I talk to business owners who have launched digital products and dig deep into how you can create, launch, and market your first digital product. I’m your host, Rene Morozowich. Let’s go.

[00:00:28] Hey friends. It’s Rene. I posted a question on Twitter and Threads last week that I was planning solo episodes. And I asked, what are you interested in learning about digital products? I’ve got a few responses. And Fatima responded and said, maximizing your website for converting digital products. Super excited about this, because I love to talk about websites as well. And I have tons of tips for you in today’s episode.

[00:00:56] Now, if there’s something you are interested in learning about visit yfdp.show/share and just let me know. You can leave me a message right there and let me know what you are interested in learning about.

[00:01:08] Now to that end. I am still doing market research calls this year. I’d love to learn more about the problems that you’re having with your digital product, creating or launching or marketing or something else. And I’m doing free 15 minute calls, no strings attached, no pitches, no sales. If you don’t want to be on my email list, I won’t even add you to that. But if I can offer any thoughts or resources I will, but really my goal is to learn more about you so that I can understand and provide the best possible content here on this podcast and YouTube show and on my website. I’m looking to do 25 calls by the end of 2023. It’s so many calls. So, if you would help me out, I’d be forever grateful. You can go to yfdp.show/convo and if you don’t have time for a call, there’s a place there where you can leave me a voice message. And just tell me a little bit about you and any problems that you’re having. [00:02:00]

[00:02:00] So super excited to talk today about websites. Now I’m trying to keep the focus on the topic, which is maximizing your website for converting digital products. So we’ll talk about a couple of things today, but the first thing is just about websites in general. And then everything that I have to tell you from then on really is about the user experience. If it’s good for the user, it’s good for your site and it’s good for your product. So we’ll talk about easy and quick access. Related and updated content, clear marketing, good design, the user path, and just some general best practices about websites in general.

[00:02:38] So just a bit about websites first. So a lot of people may not know if they do or do not need a website. Now I am a proponent of websites. And the reason for this is that you may use a specific platform for your product, right? You may sell on Gumroad. You may go to Thinkific or Lemon Squeezy, or any number of places you can sell your product. And that may change over time.

[00:03:03] So I’ve had some people on the podcast who have talked about using X or Y software products back in the day. And those products don’t exist anymore. And they moved on to a different platform, but their website stayed the same. Their URL stayed the same and having a link from their website to that product allowed them to change platforms without any big issue. So your place on the internet, it doesn’t change when you have your own website. It’s good for SEO. You can build authority over time and then you can sell on any platform that you would like and link to it from your website.

[00:03:43] Now, some people may be worried about the expense, especially if you are getting started with digital products. There are definitely ways that you can keep the expense low if you’re interested in doing that. So a domain name should cost, I don’t know, maybe $20 a year, maybe. I use Namecheap. Feel free to use whatever domain [00:04:00] registrar you would like to use. Also, there are places like Carrd and I will put this link in the show notes. Where you can get a fully functional website, one page website, and then again, link to your products being sold elsewhere for like 19 bucks a year. So I think there are definitely ways to do this. There are other ways as well, but I think it’s really important to have your own website, your own domain name, your own place on the internet that you will call your own and then your products and your offerings and things can evolve over time. So I do think that’s important.

[00:04:33] Now, also, I want to mention, and we’ve talked about this before selling to your clients versus selling to your peers. If you are a service provider and you are selling to your clients, it makes sense to put that offering on your website. However, if you’re selling to your peers, I do recommend having a different place on the internet to sell those products, because you don’t want prospective clients coming to your website and seeing something that is not offered for them that is offered for your peers.

[00:05:06] So make that distinction in your mind. If you’re selling to clients, prospective clients, DIY clients, one-on-one clients, if you’re selling to them, makes sense, have that on your website. But if you’re selling to your peers, you may want to get a different domain name, have a different website, just a place where you can sell those products without it being confusing for any website visitors.

[00:05:29] And the last thing I’ll say is, are you selling on your website directly or do you have a sub-domain or a redirect of some kind. So there are websites WordPress, Wix, Squarespace, where they have functionality for you to sell your products right there. So that is something that you can take advantage of, but you don’t have to. You can also sell products on your Lemon Squeezy or your Gumroad or your PayHip or any number of places where you can link to.

[00:05:57] So for example, in that case, I would [00:06:00] recommend having yourdomain.com/shop that redirects over to that place where you’re actually selling the products. So if you’re selling on your website directly where the functionality is right there, that’s one thing. Or you may be redirecting to another place. What I would avoid is giving the link to the PayHip or the Shopify or whatever, because if you decide to change that later, Like, for example, you’re using Shopify, but then later you decide not to use Shopify. Those links will be broken. So people won’t be able to use those links anymore.

[00:06:36] But if you have a redirect, for example, yoursite.com/shop that can redirect you wherever you are selling. So if you’re selling on Shopify one year, and then later you’re selling on Gumroad, that redirect will still work. So, let me know if you have questions about that. If that’s confusing at all, and I’d be happy to talk more about that.

[00:06:56] Okay. So let’s dive in and talk about maximizing your website for conversions. The first thing, the most important thing is, do not make me search for your product. I do not want to have to wade through all the pages, looking for your product. I want you to make it prominent in all the places. And in more than one place, because not every person enters your website in the same place. Some people will land on a blog post. Some people will go to your homepage. Some people will go to your link in bio page if that’s on your website as well. So don’t make me search, put links for your product in all of those places, wherever it makes sense.

[00:07:33] So you could have a banner or you could have a pop-up, you could have a slide in. You could have something in the sidebar if your website has a sidebar. I would definitely recommend having it linked in more than one place. It should be prominent. It should be easy to get to. So don’t be afraid to repeat yourself. That’s okay. And that’s actually good user experience because it’s right there, wherever the user is. Wherever the visitor happens to be, [00:08:00] they can get directly to your product.

[00:08:02] I would say though, make sure that it’s not too many clicks for checkout. So if you have a link to a shop and then a link to a landing page and then a link to a checkout page, and then like a three-step checkout process. Think of each one of those clicks as a point of friction. And think of people dropping off after each of those clicks, some people will not continue if you give them too many stops on the path. However you do it, make sure there’s the least number of clicks to actually getting the product so that people can get to it easily and don’t have to go through so many points of friction to get to your product.

[00:08:41] Let’s talk about related and updated content. Now I want to see related content on your website. I don’t want to just see your product, like here’s my product and that’s it. I want to read other things about it. I want to read your blog posts that lead into your product. I want you to have other related things, maybe a video or maybe a little audio or something on your website.

[00:09:03] Multiple places. That relates to the product that you are trying to sell. And that should be updated and updated regularly. So I don’t want to go to a website and see that this product is three years old. And your blog posts is five years old and everything is old. I want you to keep your website up to date.

[00:09:22] Now I would recommend making a note to review this regularly. I use ClickUp and I use ClickUp for things like my hit by a bus plan that I review every January. And there’s just a reoccurring task and it just reminds me, Hey, Rene. Let’s review, your hit by a bus plan. Make sure everything’s up to date. Send out that information to the people who will take over for you if you get hit by a bus. Which hopefully you won’t, but you know what I mean? And that allows me to review that regularly.

[00:09:50] Make sure that your website content is up to date. I would say at least annually, if not more frequently than that. I think the worst thing is an outdated website. [00:10:00] So make sure you have good updated content on your website.

[00:10:03] You could also have a free lead magnet that leads to the product. So maybe you have one blog post that leads directly to the product. And one blog post actually leads to a free lead magnet. And then after they receive that lead magnet, then you’re nurturing them. You’re sending 1, 2, 3, 4 emails that says, Hey, I also have this product. So there are other ways to do that. And there’s not just one right answer. You could have multiple lead ins to your product.

[00:10:28] Okay, let’s make sure that you have clear marketing. Hopefully you’ll have some kind of sales page, some sort of description about what this product is and what’s included, but make sure to showcase the benefits and not just the features. Everybody is guilty of this, myself included. I’m like, here’s everything you’re going to get without speaking to the benefits for the person purchasing the service or the product. What’s the transformation that’s going to happen?

[00:10:56] What problem does this actually solve? And then yeah, if you want to tell me that there’s, you know, three spreadsheets included and four Zoom calls or whatever it is, you can definitely say that, but make sure you’re speaking to the benefits.

[00:11:07] I would also say just talk like you actually talk. I will put a link in the show notes to something that one of my previous podcast guests had shared on LinkedIn and it was really funny. It was about imagine using your web copy in a real conversation. And it was a cute little graphic. And the first one was like, Hey Jenny, nice to meet you. What do you do? And Jenny says I’m providing solutions for success. Um, yeah, that’s great. But that doesn’t really explain what you do or what it is. So make sure that you’re using actual, real clear copy on your website so that it’s not this marketing mumbo-jumbo. So make sure that it’s clear and that again will be a better user experience than some of these weird words.

[00:11:51] Now good design. I don’t have too much to say about good design. You just need good design. It doesn’t have to be overly designed. It doesn’t have to be the most amazing polished [00:12:00] thing you’ve ever seen, but it should be clear, right. Easy to read, visually appealing. Fonts matter, design matters, sizing, color, contrast, all of that stuff matters. Images that showcase your product. Design helps us understand the content. So when somebody comes to a website, you only have a certain amount of time for people to actually digest what you are offering. So you want to make that quick and easy for people to understand again, in that clear copy, but also with your design. Do your images supplement and lead to your product? Or do they take away from your product? So think about the design of your website and also of your product pages.

[00:12:47] Also consider the path that the user will take. Now, this is not necessarily the path that you might expect. I have a software background and have designed and written software in the past. And the way that I think the users will use it is inevitably not the way they actually use it. And sometimes like, I don’t like, how did you even get to that part?

[00:13:06] I don’t even know how you would have gotten to that. Uh, don’t go that way, but there is more than one way and more than one path to your product. So think about the path that the users take on any given page. And test it. Test the path out, get a different email address, make sure you’re going through. Do the links work? Does the checkout work? Have a friend test it. Make sure that the path is clear and correct, and everything is working properly. And again, that goes back to that user experience. You want the user to have a good experience on your website.

[00:13:38] Now just a couple best practices about websites in general. Your website’s speed is important. So speed is affected by a couple of things. Your website host, make sure you have a good website host. Caching, you probably do want to use caching on your website to speed up the website a little bit. Think about your image sizes. You don’t just want to dump all of the photos from your [00:14:00] iPhone or from your phone right onto your website. They’re probably a little bit too big. I’d resize those a little bit for the web and that will make your website run faster. And again, good user experience. Instead of like a really slow laggy website.

[00:14:13] Also accessibility. Color contrast is really important. If it’s hard to read, people will bail. The size of the text. I’m not sure if you remember, but back in the day when you know, websites kind of first started to be like a 12 point font was perfectly acceptable. No longer. It should be 16 or larger. So think about the size of the text and you want to have some spacing too in between paragraphs, in between lines. You don’t want your lines to be too long. Again, you want the user to have a good experience. You don’t want them reading sales page copy from, you know, the far end of their 27 inch monitor the whole way to the other end.

[00:14:51] Alt text is also important. So describing those images that are on the page, that’s good for your users. That’s good for SEO. It is just good practice in general. Also about SEO using headings, using bullet points, internal linking. So linking from page to page. Making sure that your pages are indexed, checking for broken links and making sure that you’re redirecting anything that you pulled down to something that still stays up.

[00:15:18] So these are just good website practices in general And if it is interesting to you and you want me to dive into any of these a little bit more, if you’re like Hey wait, Rene, I didn’t actually get any of those or can you tell me a little bit more about accessibility. I would be happy to do an episode on those.

[00:15:34] In conclusion if you would like me to look over your website or your product and give any feedback I’d be happy to do that. So you can send me the link on Threads or Instagram or LinkedIn or Twitter. If you’re on my newsletter list just reply to any of the emails I send you and say Hey Rene here’s my link. If you have any feedback let me know. Or you can go to my website scenicroutedigital.com. Look for contact and you can fill out the form and send me a message and I’d love to hear from you. I’d love to [00:16:00] see your products. I’d love to see what you are thinking about doing.

[00:16:03] Hey, thanks for listening. I’d love to continue the conversation in your inbox. Email SUBSCRIBE to hey at yfdp.show or sign up in the show notes to get bimonthly emails about how you can create, launch, and market your first digital product. Can’t wait to see you there.