We talk about mistakes that small businesses make online quite a lot on our website, and that’s because we constantly see the same ones being made every single day.

What we love about our job is helping these small business owners get more from their online marketing efforts by taking what they’re already doing and making it a hell of a lot better.

So they can convert more visitors into buyers.

When that happens it’s a wonderful feeling knowing that it was because of the tweaks we did that caused the increase in sales and leads.

One of the biggest mistakes we see is when they decide to advertise on Google.

Now if you’re looking to get potential customers to take notice of your business and you need traffic fast, there is no better way to achieve this than putting some money into Google Advertising.

You can literally create an advert AND have highly targeted traffic land on your site pretty much instantly. Who wouldn’t love that right?

Here’s the problem though.

If your website isn’t set up correctly to convert all this fantastic traffic you’re getting into cold hard sales, what’s the point?

Allow me to explain in more detail.

Whenever you create any kind of advertising campaign, you need to direct any traffic that you’re going to get to a dedicated landing page. One that is set up to convert all those visitors into leads and sales.

What you don’t want to be doing is sending this traffic to your homepage. Most home pages are not designed for conversions, and all that money you’re spending is just being wasted.

You may as well just set fire to it and watch it burn.

Think about how many distractions there are. Think about how many potential outcomes can occur. Think about your visitors not being able to take the one single action that you want them to take.

You want every single visitor to have minimum distractions. To make this easier to understand, perhaps we should talk to you about Attention Ratio.

Attention ratio is the number of things you can do on a given page, to the number of things you should do.

When talking about marketing campaigns, you should only have a single goal (or you’re doing it wrong), and so the Attention Ratio should be 1:1.

How many links and call to actions are on your home page? Have a quick count of them now.

Most websites will have an about us page, a contact us page, a services page and lots of other pages that can be clicked on by your visitor.

And those links to other areas of your website are bad for business. They distract your visitor and make them move away from the one primary goal you should be focusing on, which is getting more sales.

Let’s go through a quick case study to show you the impact attention ratio has on conversions. Company A has set up a Google Ads campaign and is directing the traffic this ad generates to their home page that has an attention ratio of 15:1.

Conversion Focused Design

With Links

That’s 15 links to other areas of their website.

The following week they created a dedicated landing page with an attention ratio of 3:1 (again, that’s 3 links to other parts of their website).

After the two weeks were up they then measured the results and discovered that conversions had increased by 100% during week 2. The week they sent their ad traffic to a dedicated landing page.

Conversion Focused Design

Without Links

That’s the kind of impact you get when you give people less choices to make.

Now there are certain scenarios where a higher attention ratio can benefit you, and that’s when there are multiple links and call to actions that have the same goal.

So if you have a long landing page with lots of content on, then you can place multiple buttons and links on the page, providing they all cause your visitor to take the same action.

Another scenario is when you have anchor links in your navigation.

One page websites have this sort of setup. They have a navigation bar but when someone clicks those nav links it simply sends them to the correct part of that single page where the content they want to view is located.

They’re NOT being sent off somewhere else, they’re staying on the same page but simply moving to the information they need. There’s no LEAKS.

So whatever you do, please, please, please STOP sending your ad traffic to your homepage with 57 links to distract your potential customer away from your one goal.

It’s not going to work at all and only adds to their frustration AND yours.

You’re already having to fight for their attention with the multiple browser tabs they have open and the Facebook messenger notifications they get from their mother…