Is your business website a long-winded bore?

Who would you rather sit next to at a long dinner – someone who talks nonstop about their own business, or someone who asks you questions and finds points of common interest to discuss?

Unless the guests are exceptionally interesting people (perhaps at an Oscars after-party or President Obama’s Silicon Valley dinner party with tech leaders), you’d probably prefer the second type of dinner partner.   In fact, almost everyone would.

So why do we assume that when they visit our corporate website, our prospects are unlike us in this very fundamental way? Why do we think they want to read about our industry leadership and awards before they even know what we do or if it’s relevant to them?

Website content: Tell me why I care

When I land on your website — whether on the home page or on an internal page that I found from a Google search — I should be able to understand very quickly what business problems you solve (for a B2B site). If not, then why should I continue reading?

Yet so often, companies bury what the customer gets from the technology very deep in the site. Many corporate websites seem written to satisfy every constituent within the company, without considering the poor website visitor.  In her post on the Conversation Agent blog, 10 Reasons why your content strategy fails, Valerie Maltoni put this problem at #10 — “Your content is all about you, not your customer.”

Let me tell you more about myself…

There’s a place for you to talk about your company on the website: it’s in the About Us section. There you should feel free to go on about your history, your founders, whatever thrills you.

Everywhere else, try thinking like your prospect.   Find a connection with their business problems and tell them why they should care about you.

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