Continuing from the last post, a few more notes from the recent Web site usability presentation.

Realtime chat, where a Web site user can instant-message with a knowledgeable company representative, is proving to have a positive return on investment (ROI) in some industries. For instance, Penske Truck Rentals had a 10-day positive ROI on live chat. Chat agents sold twice as much as call center agents, and their conversion rate was 3-times better. I imagine, if applied properly, realtime chat would have a positive impact in the online insurance sales industry as well.

Another thing: “wordy” Web sites are out. Content should be brief and to the point. A good rule of thumb is this: take other marketing material, such as a brochure, and cut the content by 50 percent. Then cut another 25 percent of what’s left.

Content should also be organized into categories, placed under headings, and highlighted with bullets. A good book on this subject is Don’t Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability, by Steve Krug.

And each public Web page needs to be able to stand alone with a strong call to action. People make a “bail, no-bail” decision within eight seconds of landing on a Web page. So make sure your navigation, site information, and architecture are up to snuff or you’ll be left wondering why your site is getting hits but no sales.

IdeaStar Insurance Technologies is always ready to help. Give me a call or post a comment….