So, you’ve put together a website and you’re all set to go with cheesy calls to action (such as ‘but wait, there’s more!) plus zero white-space (insert sarcasm here). In the online world, the adage ‘build it and they will come’ does not apply; some concerted effort is required to convert passive clickers into paying customers. Even if visitors come to your website in droves like Justin Beiber fans, they’ll need to take some sort of action or your efforts will be a waste. Here are a few common reasons why your website traffic might not be converting:

1. Lack of good content – Your visitors are looking for something compelling to prove that you understand their needs and can improve their lives. Provide them with something of value and they will reward you with their readership, loyalty, and, ultimately, their business.
2. Your traffic isn’t targeted – Are you attracting visitors who have no interest in buying from you? Check the source of your traffic in Google Analytics to ensure that the visits you’re getting are coming from the right places.

3. No strong call to actions – Visitors needs a compelling reason to do something once they’ve landed on your site. Guide them through the process - offer them something of value; show them that you understand their needs. What action would you like your visitors to engage in? To call you for a free trial? To opt-in to your e-newsletter? To comment on a blog post? It’s important to get clear on what your website content aims to achieve.

4. Poor website design and layout – If visitors can’t find what they need right away, as a general rule, they’re gone within 30 seconds. Be sure that your design and layout is easy to follow and navigate. If you aren’t sure, perform usability testing to work out the bugs. Pass around your content and have a few people look it over; a fresh set of eyes never hurts.

5. You’re hard selling – Pop-ups galore and your visitors will be gone faster than a thief in the night. Don’t try to achieve everything within one interaction; it’s called the ‘sales cycle’ for a reason – you will have plenty of time to engage prospects along the way. For example, you could focus on obtaining more email opt-ins and then engage leads with clever email marketing. Stop trying to cram too many goals into one interaction or you’ll overwhelm (and lose) potential customers.

6. Lack of connection with your readers – Your visitors want you to understand and appeal to what they need. Again, if you aren’t sure, conduct some market research to get a few ideas. Could you offer an eBook on a compelling topic that’s relevant to your visitors? What topics of interest would appeal to your target markets? How could you leverage this information to showcase thought-leader and expert status within your industry?

7. Limited social presence or ‘social proof’ – Your visitors want to know that people like them also care about what you’re saying and what you’re up to. Your website content should create instant credibility. For example, ensure that your press coverage and accolades are displayed in plain view. Display links to your social networks and online community.

8. No email opt-in forms – You could be missing out on marketing gold (i.e. a huge window of opportunity to engage potential customers) if you neglect to include an email opt-in form on your website. Try offering an eBook or something of value to encourage visitors to provide their contact details.

9. Slow website load times – If it takes more than a few seconds for your website to load, visitors are heading back to Facebook for more fluffy kitten videos. Have a design and programming expert take a look at your site to ensure that no elements are impeding load times.

10. You don’t offer anything of value – Give your visitors a reason to want to do business with you. Offering a small taste of what you can provide, such as a free trial, gives potential customers a direct experience with your product or service.

11. You lack a captivating ‘about’ page – Your visitors want to connect with your company emotionally; they want to know who you are and why they should trust you enough to do business with you.

12. Information overload – Don’t overwhelm your visitors with blocks and blocks of text and images. Keep it simple, silly; focus on providing content that is succinct, scannable, and includes bullet points and titles.
There you have it, folks. Do you have anything else to add to this list?