Topic: Website Critique

Why Isn't This Site Generating Sales?

Posted by Anonymous on 1000 Points
Ok, let me preface this by saying that I did not design this web site. I was asked to take a look at it and offer my opinion as to why it wasn't generating sales and why the free trial offers weren't converting into long term customers.

The web site is and it is, like the URL implies, a vitamin supplement web site. The client has until June to start generating sales.

The goal of the site is twofold:

a. direct sales through the web site
b. free trial customers converting to paying customers for a minimum of three months

My recommendations were:

a. either ditch the free trial altogether or require people to call and talk to a physical person to request it (the theory being that if it isn't so anonymous, it will cut down on the number of 'testers' -- people who want a freebie with no intention of buying at a later date) -- the client has agreed to ditch the free trial altogether.

b. have the site visually connect with their target market (women 46 years old and older), which right now it does not

c. re-implement their PPC campaign with a focus on consumer related keywords (i.e. buy vitamins online) rather than research related keywords (i.e. effects of B-12)

d. create a database of ailments with information on how various ingredients in this product may help with that ailment

What I would really like is input with regards to making the buying process intuitive and compelling.

Does the client want the visitor to come away informed about the product? Yes. But they also want the visitor to come away having placed an order for it as well.

Thanks so much,

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  • Posted by Frank Hurtte on Member
    I checked out the website. I like what it says. I like the free sample program. When a person enters their credit card number and all their information, they are pretty much committed. I suggest going for more people signing up for the samples.
    Could it be the price point is too high for this kind of sale? Is there any way a scaled down version could be available for 19.99 a month?
    Research shows it is easier to get a little more money from people already signed up, than to get new people signed up.
    Hope this helps.
    Frank Hurtte
  • Posted by Pepper Blue on Member
    2 suggestions:

    1st, redevelop so there are more links from keywords on the homepage to interior pages that explain what is in the product and what that relationship is to good health i.e. why do I need to use your product (WIIFM).

    For example, you have 2 bullets in the middle column "the right vitamins" etc. that could all serve as great internal links and with redeveloped content and calls-to-action this is how you lead people down the path to conversion.

    Think in terms of keyword and keyword phrases, not just for SEO but for overall better readability.

    2nd, as Igor mentions, you have no clear call-to-action(s). It is confusing what you are asking the visitor to do.

    - Find out more....
    - Why you need these nutrients....
    - Find out about our 30 day free trial
    - Why you will feel better after 30 days....
    - About our guarantee...

    As hard as the site tries, it still does not provide the confidence/assurance people need to try/buy your product, and that it is a win/win situation for them to do so.

    I hope that helps.
  • Posted by darcy.moen on Accepted
    The 'add to cart' and 'free trial' is confusing. If it's free, why do I have to add to a shopping cart? Shopping cart implies to the visitor that they are buying something....wich most likely scares them off.

    Another big issue is, the suppliments markt is saturated. Its hard to compete with GNC's buy it and take it home immediately....why wait for the mail man to bring me my order? Its tough to compete with tae it home today when your customer has to wait a few days before they have thier hands on the product.
  • Posted on Member
    i agree with darcy.

    these supplements are way too competitive and they all offer exactly the same thing:
    1) same distribution channels
    2) similar composition
    3) similar marketing strategy
    4) similar price

    a good and difficult excercise to undertake is to really try and set yourself appart from the rest of them. you still need what others have included in their sites "eg a Dr. of some sort" and research stats. But think what do your target market really care about?

    one thing i can tell you is that these women all care about their children. So why not give a free pack of specially designed suppliment for their children? cuz often than not, their children matters more to them than themselves. This of course has to be linked to their purchase.

    Think what else do these people care about? why not do a focus group and find out?

    different geographic locations have different mineral content in their tap water (assuming you guys drink tap water) so their suppliment could be customised in some way? just a few ideas.

  • Posted on Accepted
    One quick suggestion - switch the position of the person (I would change image to a woman) with the logo.

    If you are looking at usability, the logo should always be top left and a link to your home page. It's "expected".

    You're entering a market with a million competitors and populated by email spammers. You are already fighting a negative perception of the products combined with massive competition in the sector as a whole. That will make your SEO mission a whole lot harder too. Sorry to be negative, but that is one market I would fancy attacking.

    Also, good luck trying get an email mentioning any kind of "pills" through the spam filters. You can thank "V1aaagra" or "c1Al1s" for that one!
  • Posted by jpoyer on Accepted
    Cynthia, one more for you. I'm surprised that no one has really touched on this yet, because it really was the first thing that jumped out to me.

    I do think the color choice is good - the blue and green are a good match to the feeling you are trying to portray, however ...

    All content issues aside, this design is not too appealing. The "glowing" text, the floating pills, the grass and sky ... it is an amateurish design. Even the graphics have the fuzzy low quality jpg appearance ("jelly" on edges) that is common in sites made by amateurs. I totally agree with the comments about removing the doctor's photo and that blurb about Schuller and DiSiena (who and who?). The connection between the look and feel of the site and its credibility factor leaves much to be desired. The first thing that popped into my head was "snake oil."

    Even when you address the SEO and keyword issues, I believe you will still have a credibility problem because of the design. I would ditch the glowing text, the random gradients, and stick to two fonts (and minimize attributes for these fonts - i.e. don't bold, ital and underline all capped text) throughout the pages.

    Content suggestions from others in this thread are very good.
  • Posted by Bottom Line Guy on Member

    I believe a good looking man who is the founder/creator IS perfect for your target market -- offers credibility and sex appeal in one picture they WILL look at (yes for 46+ women) -- but I do like the idea of a white coat (maybe with the medical symbol on it) -- remove the pills (no one likes pills and the number of them is a negative until they buy into your value proposition)

    Might also consider a SHORT multimedia presentation (clickable from link right next to picture) where the doctor answers the question "How my formula improves the effectiveness of most vitamin supplements" (6 slides, flash presentation, keep audio of each slide short to explain key points below his picture -- see comment below) -- will add humanization -- have him talk conversationally as a doctor not a salesperson -- if they trust/believe him chances of trying them increase exponentially).

    Next Issue is you most valuable space based on eye studies of first 8 seconds, is upper left hand side under the picture -- take you best shot there.

    Here's what I quickly culled out of your copy (which most will never get to) for this prime spot:

    Enhances body and mind
    Via recent scientific advancements and technology
    Vitamins, minerals and antioxidants to maintain optimal health
    Superior in digestibility and absorption
    Sold directly to you, no retail markup

    Also agree with SEO work focus comments above.

    Last quick point without getting into detailed copywriting about trial -- change it to a no risk offer from the user's perspective -- example:

    If you don't feel better, more energetic and sharper in XX days you lose nothing (details link)

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