There are tons of websites on the Internet, and thousands more are created by day. Your website will likely be one of the stops for your audience, its becoming less and less a stop and instead replaced more with the social links but the way we and you are doing things – we’ll be changing that routine on a case by case basis.
Your emails will pull people into your site, your trailers and super special content will reside here on the site.
With this in mind, you need your website to work well, convert well and excite well.
So what possible blunders are you on the lookout for?
1.) Bells and Whistles.
Bells and whistles suck. Less is more. The simpler you can keep things the better, you’re less likely to overwhelm people, less likely for things to mess up, and less likely to distract visitors. Instead you channel them to your Call to Action. A great example is the Prisoners website, every link you click makes you load and sit through a fullscreen animation… EVERY LINK! You can skip them, but it gets really irritating REALLY fast!
2.) Too much Social.
Its great to be on social, helps with your SEO and shareability so much. It’s easy to go too far, prompts at the top and bottom of pages can be alright, but throw in there a pop up as well, then another popup when youve watched the trailer, another when you hover over an image and it becomes far too much!
End of the day, if I want to share your image I will.
Your job is to make that possible, so maybe some small ones in the header and a couple links after a post. Thats great. You can increase shareability by asking for the share, but don’t jam it in my face via the popup! Your film may well have some quoteables, so why not make a page full of these and integrate ClickToTweet with them, that way, all I do is find the one I want and click the ‘Tweet’ button!
3.) Its slow.
A lot of people get carried away with all the bells and whistles you can have, but they more often than not MASSIVELY impact the load time on your site. A slider is nice, but its a lot of scripts and big images that don’t index well and take time to load. There are several things you can look into to speeding up your site; Turn on page caching, optimising images, loading scripts. Worth getting in tough with a web developer / designer and getting their help. If you wanna tackle it yourself you can google that shit and get cracking.
4.) No Call to Action.
This could probably be the worst one, no call to action, no ‘todo’ for the visitor. Every page wants to have an action, even if its just to read on, this should be very clear. If your selling seats to a film, make sure the page is very boldly pointing to visitors taking that action. If your after email addresses, call for that action, if you want people to share, ask for the share, want more money, ask for more money!
5.) Bad SEO.
Make sure your pages are based around just one keyword per post / per page. This helps you keep focused on the goal of the page as well as ensuring you appear in the search engines effectively. Google is getting more interested in conversational key wording. To do this, make sure the copy is how people speak, highlights the way people would search for it. So if your talking about crowd funding – what people typically search is “how to crowd fund” “crowd funding tips” “the best way to crowd fund” so make sure your headings are these sentences, make sure these phrases pop up through your post. It’s no longer a case of jamming words in a post in hopes that they get caught but more have actual sentences people search for.
6.) Lacking Email Capture.
Very similar to the Call To Action one, but I don’t want the email capture part to be glossed over so to reiterate: As a filmie, you probably want to get some bums on seats, ticket sales, views on a video, crowd funding donations. Best way to do this is to capture their email address so you have permission to send them your ideas and suggestions. You need an email sign up! To make this abundantly clear, make sure your email signup is right at the top, big and interesting!
7.) Crappy Homepage.
A homepage is more often than not, where the majority of your visitors enter your site, they typically come in via a blog post or an about page. Your homepage then really wants to welcome and let people know there in the right place. This can be as simple as “If your a struggling pauper, don’t worry your in the right place. I’m going to show you how to make an extra £10 a day for the rest of your life.” Stick that with a genuine photo and your on the money.
8.) No Mobile Optimisation.
This ones actually incredible. Your site really needs to be viewable on all the major devices. The amount of people browsing on their phone is growing exponentially every year. Its convenient, localised and personal, so make sure your site works, even if its super basic, make sure it works so people can get to you.
9.) Autoplaying Sound and Video
There is nothing more annoying then visiting a website with autoplaying sounds. Your visitors may be at work, in a library or somewhere else where loud audio will result in navigating away from your website as quickly as possible!
10.) Using Flash.
If you have a Flash site, you need to get rid of it and never go there again! Flash is pretty much just straight blocked by internet savvy folk; typically its just stupid, flashy,noisy adverts that are in Flash, so its now blocked by people. Additionally, Flash isn’t indexed well by search engines, so there is minimal SEO juice in it. It’s usually super over the top, keep shit simple, Flash has many bells and whistles, there is temptation to use them. Don’t!