Take a look at your website’s footer for a moment and ask yourself this question: what does a visitor do next after they see it for the first time? In truth, you should be able to answer this without even looking, but if the answer doesn’t jump out as you see your footer, it’s probably losing you business.
A footer is so much more than the bottom of your website or a place to store everything you couldn’t fit elsewhere. It’s potentially the last thing a visitor sees before they leave your site and you can’t let these people simply walk out the door.
Why Do Visitors Reach Your Footer In The First Place?
Probably because they haven’t found what they were looking for in your main page content. They’ve run out of room to scroll and now they have a decision to make – do they scroll back to the top, try another page or head right back to the search results, where all your competitors are waiting to have their go?
Chances are the latter, if your footer doesn’t give people a good reason to stick around or move on to the next stage of the buying process. The small details matter when it comes to conversion rates and you’ll be amazedhow big a difference footer design can make.
Designing A Footer That Doesn’t Say “Exit”
There are a number of elements to a footer designed to keep people on your website and the best way to fine-tune your own results is with A/B testing. Every website is different and there’s no single solution that works for everyone – but try these guidelines on for size:
Put In A Call To Action
This is a minimum requirement for footer design and it’s a shame to see so many sites neglect it. You’ll find no less than three on our own footer, prompting users to take another action when they reach the bottom of a page. Whether you want visitors to get in touch, join your mail list or take some other action, now is the time to tell them.
Consider Another Contact Form
Always make it easy for people to get in touch and if you find yourself wondering what to put in your footer, consider another contact form. We decided to take a different approach with our “Request a call back” tab to the right of your screen, but simple forms in footers are another great way to encourage more leads.
Show Your Latest Tweets Or Blog Posts
Your tweets and blog titles are designed to be so eye-catching users can’t help but click them to read more. So put them in your footer, because this is the perfect place for some irresistible headlines to keep visitors involved with your brand.
Be Strategic About Links
A common trend for footers has long been sitemaps, a second navigation or a selection of important links. In fact, it was difficult to find a site that didn’t do this until a few years ago and many still take this approach – which is fine. Just think about which links a visitor needs to see once they reach the bottom of a page, what can keep them on your site and where they should go next. And if you have a lot of links and other info to squeeze in, take a look at ‘fat’ footer designs.
Do What It Takes To Keep People On The Page
Your aim is to keep people on your website that little bit longer and reduce the number of potential leads doing a U-turn. More specifically, the people who could genuinely become paying customers, but haven’t yet realised you’re perfect the business for them. Think of it as your last chance to get a second chance with the ones that could otherwise get away.