What are Cookie Cutter websites?
This has nothing to do with the Cookie message popups you see on all websites these days. Or websites that sell cookie cutters!
Cookie Cutter websites refer to very cheap ‘off the peg’ website templates, where everything is done and ready to go. Just buy the template and download a ready to go website, with ‘professional’ images and all the features you want.
It’s easy, right.
A website like this might be ok for a school project or a website to share with family and friends at best. If you run a professional business and want to be taken seriously then your website is a very important part of laying the foundations.
Invest a little bit of time, money, and effort on a professional website and when people visit you online, they will be more interested and intrigued and likely to spend a few precious moments to find out more about you.
What do you do when searching online?
Think about your own behaviour online. If you land on a website that looks cheap and is confusing, what do you do? Most likely close the website and look for another one. Very quickly.
Template websites do not perform well. They are often slow, full of unnecessary code and vulnerable to being compromised. They lack any originality and look like hundreds of other websites out there.
‘But you would say that because you make websites.
Yes, but it is true. With anything in life, nothing is free. And cheap always comes at a price. In this case the price it is less visitors, less credibility, less engagement, and less enquiries.
You do not need to spend thousands of pounds to get a quality website, but a modest investment, wisely implemented will yield better results for your business.
Invest what you can afford and what you are comfortable with. You will get a much better website that clearly and succinctly explains what you do and encourages people to take the step that you want them to take.
Each page can carry a specific purpose to demonstrate a particular page of your business and provide credibility and generate enquiries.
The biggest and most important thing your website MUST do.
When people first visit your website home page, there is just 1 thing that you want them to do.
It’s well known… long gone are the days when people would spend time to read a nice introduction and all the information on that website to learn what it is all about.
No one has time or can be bothered. People look at a website for a few seconds and make their mind up. In those precious few seconds, you MUST answer the questions that the visitor will be asking in their mind.
Questions your home page must answer
Is this website for me?
Show who the website is for and what you do, through good quality images which incorporate your target audience. Images are much better if they are real (not stock).
What do you do?
A clear, concise simple positioning statement will explain what you do in a second.
Why should I care
What are the benefits to what you offer? What social proof do you have?
What should I do next?
Tell people what they should do next, such as call, talk on live chat, or fill out a form.
All these factors and much more are not likely to addressed with an of the shelf website and the result will be that people spend very little time on your website and will leave.
If you are considering an off-the-shelf website or already have one and want to learn about the alternatives, get in touch with your questions.