January 30, 2013
by Bob Coleman
The purpose of Website Wednesday is to help educate you, the small business lender, to make sure you know you are capturing the information of the qualified borrowers who come to visit your website.
We do this by evaluating your competitors, pointing out the good and bad.
Website Wednesday is not geared to make you an expert in website design. Rather, it is provided so you can attain a management level of expertise in the shortest amount of time, e.g. you will be able to ask the “right” questions to those that create and maintain your site.
I’ve put together these five quick tests that the small business lender site should pass. You should be directing those that you hire or team with to pass these standards.
Today’s analysis is at the request of SBA Complete, a third-party provider of SBA services to SBA lenders.
Let’s see how they fare.
1) Can the user determine what you do in two seconds?
Somewhat. I don’t like the fact the video is in my face and starts to play immediately. But when I scroll down, I see the tag lines, Smart SBA Outsourcing, Trusted SBA Consultants and Professional Loan Servicing.
2) Do you establish your small business lending expertise? (e.g. Do I trust you to stay on the page longer than two more seconds and explore further.)
The tag lines at the bottom sells me. The key question is will someone stick around to hear the video?
Again, I am a fan of testimonials. I would prefer testimonials with specfic cost savings or rates of return, rather than a generic video. Call it personal preference.
Also, I know SBA Complete spends a lot of time building up one of the partner’s, Karen McHugh, personal brand. I would make it clear this is the company she is involved with.
3) Is the site clean, or too complex and confusing?
Very clean. I do like the layout. Although, again, I don’t like the fact I have to scroll to get the tag lines.
4) Do you motivate me to take the next step? (e.g. Is the “call to action” process easy?”
I would personalize this more and put a name with a phone number. I don’t like contact forms that say “we will get back to you shortly.” You should convey a sense of immediate feedback to the visitor.
5) Does it pass the Google search test? (e.g. Do you come up on the first page of search with key words?)
Bingo! SBA loan oursourcing comes up 1-2-3 on a Google search.
Not bad. If they fix the video size and make it so everything is on one page, I believe it will be a stronger site.
If you would like your website critiqued in Website Wednesday drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org
Next week we review Colorado Loan Source.