January 30, 2022
 min read

The top 3 reasons your website isn’t generating leads

Rory Johnston

Do you feel that your website isn’t delivering you as many leads as it could be?

Are you frustrated that you have to spend hours and hours every week personally looking for new leads?

You might think that your site just doesn’t get enough traffic to bring in the leads your business needs, but there’s a good chance that you can increase the number of leads your website generates, from the same amount of traffic, by fixing these three issues.

Your site navigation is confusing

Let’s assume that you’ve set up your business on all of the big social platforms, optimized your paid ads strategy to pay as little per click as possible, and your written content is bringing consistent engaged traffic. But now, those people are arriving on your site, unsure of where to go.

A GIF showing an man in a field standing up, wondering where he is.

Unfortunately, site navigation tends to be a bit of an afterthought for most websites. Most people build all of the pages they think they need, or that come with their template, and then add links and hit publish. 

The best time to plan your site navigation is before you build it, the next best time is now, so let’s dive into the three main types of site navigation:

  • Global
  • Hierarchical
  • Local

Global Navigation

This is probably the most popular menu on the market today. It works especially well for smaller sites that don’t have a huge amount of pages.

With global navigation, the menu and links are identical across all pages of the site. Often, they are designed so that as you scroll down the menu will follow your line of sight.

A GIF showing an example of global navigation, showing a menu following the user as they scroll down the Scavenger Coffee website.

Wide, horizontal top navigation menus don’t work very well on mobile, so often these will show up as three horizontal lines stacked on top of each other (aka the hamburger menu).

A GIF showing an example of a mobile hamburger menu on the Scavenger Coffee website that drops down when the user clicks on it.

Hierarchical Navigation

Hierarchical menus are ideal for sites that have a huge amount of content that can be broken down into defined categories. E-commerce sites are a great example of this as pages can be broken down by activity, gender, season, and so on.

Sometimes these hierarchical menus will show up as Mega Menus.

A GIF showing an example of a mega menu on the Moose Jaw site that expands when a user clicks on it.

Other times they’ll be adaptive menus, adjusting to reflect the context of the page you’re on.

A GIF showing an example of an adaptive menu on the MEC.ca website. As the user clicks on the camping section the menu adjusts to reflect the new categories.

Local Navigation

Local website navigation refers to internal links. This could be a link to a previous article you’ve written that provides more context to the article currently being read.

Make sure to have your links open in a new tab, so that your reader doesn’t lose their place in the original article.

A GIF showing an example of local navigation on the Brandcamp website, showing an internal link in a blog article which links to another blog post on the Brandcamp site.

The fix? Make your navigation as simple as possible.

Once you get a handle on the principles of navigation, it’s time to make sure it’s as simple as possible for your readers.

Make sure that your menu links match the URLs and headers of any page that they’re pointing to, so people know what to expect when they click on a link.

Sift through your site, looking for any broken links, which stop your reader’s journey as quickly  as Wile E. Coyote’s painted tunnel. 

A GIF of Wile E. Coyote running into a tunnel painted onto a rock face and coming to a sudden stop, to illustrate what happens to a web user who clicks on a broken link.

On your own site, you can quickly fix broken links, but what if another site is pointing towards a broken link? 

301 redirects are your friend here, think of them like a mail forwarder. 

Just in case you miss one though, it’s important to make sure you have a helpful 404 page. 404 pages show up when your site doesn’t know what else to do. It’s the last page you want to show someone on your site, so the least you could do is get rid of your stock 404 page and make it friendly and as helpful as possible with some human language.

A GIF of a 404 page with a slowly spinning earth representing the number zero.

Advanced Method

A more advanced method is to look at your google analytics and see the amount of time people spend on various pages, their typical user journeys, and where they drop off to better design your site navigation.

You’re not using landing pages

If you’re bringing people to your site for a very specific purpose (e.g. signing up for a webinar), sometimes you actually don’t want any navigation.

Good navigation helps readers easily and intuitively move around your site, but what if you want them to stay and focus on the one page that you brought them to?

Landing pages are web pages with a singular focus.

A GIF of a man pointing to his head and emphatically saying focus.

That focus could be on generating website leads, or it could be on closing an e-commerce sale. Either way it’s all about using that focus to help convert your web traffic.

Landing pages don’t link to the rest of your website, and your website doesn’t link to them. It’s not that your site is ashamed of them, but usually they only make sense to a very specific reader.

You could build out a single landing page using whatever CMS that you have (e.g. Wordpress, Webflow, Squarespace), or there are also more advanced–and expensive– options such as Unbounce and Leadpages.

What type of traffic goes to a landing page?

Imagine you’ve created a specific offer for a spring break vacation offer, you post it on Facebook and then spend your hard-earned dollars promoting that post for greater visibility.

A GIF of James Franco from the movie Spring Breakers saying "spring breaaaaak".

You know that the people who click on that post are interested specifically in your spring break offer, so why would you send them to your home page, which probably doesn’t mention anything at all about spring break?

Landing pages give you the opportunity to speak directly to one type of reader, so you can make the content flow naturally from the source (Facebook ad) to the destination (landing page on your website). This is called ‘message match’.

Good message match means that the header in your Facebook ad and the header on your landing page are the same. Someone who clicks on your FB ad won’t be taken aback by where they’ve landed, they’ll instantly recognize that they’re where they intended to be.

A GIF showing an example of good message match.A user clicks on a Google ad for a landing page builder, and then arrives on a page offering a 14 day free trial of a landing page builder.

This traffic can come from different sources–such as ads run on other platforms–so long as the messaging stays consistent.

What do I do once I have traffic to a landing page?

Once a reader arrives on your landing page, it’s your job to guide them towards your offer. Your offer is what all of your efforts on the page are driving towards.

If your goal is to increase your web leads, then your offer could be a free ebook in exchange for their contact details.

They may not be ready to make that exchange at the top of the landing page, so it’s your job to make the necessary shifts in their mindset to prepare them for that offer by the time they reach the bottom of the page.

Getting them ready for that offer might require:

  • Showing them social proof and glowing testimonials
  • Persuasive copy that builds desire in your offer
  • Enticing imagery that keeps their attention
A man spreading his arms with the text "how could you say no".

The most important thing is to focus on just one offer. You don’t want two calls-to-action (CTAs) at the bottom of your landing page, leaving your reader struggling to make a decision and ultimately choosing indecision and leaving your page.

Your website isn’t mobile friendly

Mobile web traffic is the lion’s share of web traffic these days, 50.88% to desktop’s 46.39%.

If you’re not designing your site to be responsive, and mobile friendly, then you’re throwing away more than half of your traffic by giving those readers a terrible user experience.

Almost every CMS offers responsive templates

Website builders like Webflow make it incredibly easy to design mobile-friendly sites that look spectacular, so you’re not going to get any sympathy from your readers if you serve up a clunky experience that has them pinching and zooming.

A person pinching to zoom on a website that isn't responsive.

Maybe your website is stuck on an older CMS, or maybe you had it custom built for you 15 years ago, whatever the reason, it’s time to suck up the cost and invest in a new website that’s mobile-friendly.

Responsive doesn’t mean perfect

Even with responsive designs that are built to adapt to every device, there are still many ways to provide a poor experience to your readers that might turn them off of your site. High-resolution video backgrounds are one example of this. If someone is reaching your site using mobile data on a weak connection, a large video is going to slow the loading time of your site down to a crawl, and your potential web leads will be back out the door before they’ve even seen your site.

Grampa Simpson walking in, hanging his hat, turning in a circle, grabbing his hat, and immediately walking back out the same door.

Consider having a static background that is served up only on mobile devices, as people accessing your site on desktop probably have a solid internet connection and can handle a video background.

Remember also that there is not one, monolithic mobile device (despite Apple’s best efforts) and that what might look good on a Pixel 4, could be broken on a Samsung S21 thanks to slightly different display sizes and resolution.

Advanced method

Google Analytics can be your friend again here, as you can use it to look at bounce rates for desktop vs mobile devices and discover if you have any problem pages.

Invest in your site, and it will reward you

Making these improvements to your site navigation and user experience will require an investment of time, but every hour that you spend improving your site will save you countless hours manually chasing leads.

If you don’t have the time to make these site changes to build a consistent sales funnel that will tirelessly generate leads for your business, we can help with that.

Resources to guide you

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