So – you’ve got someone interested in your company. Great job! However, the battle has just begun.

Once someone is interested, you need to make sure they stay interested so that they will ultimately invest.  This is part of the second step in the Investor Conversion Optimization (ICO) process: Engage. During this step of the process, you need to convert your potential investor from ‘interested’ to ‘researcher’. Researching is a key part of the process for your potential investors; when someone begins researching a company they naturally become more emotionally invested and thus are more likely to actually invest. There are plenty of ways for potential investors to gather that research, but one of the first places they’re going to go is to your website.

What do you need to do to make sure their experience on your site is a positive and fruitful one? Well, depending on your current web design, this may either mean complete website redesign or just IR page optimization.

When determining if your website is optimized for investors, ask yourself the following:

    1. Do I need a separate website? Are your company’s clients or customers utilizing your website often? Are there features or elements that they are attracted to, or is there a reason they may frequently visit? If so, it doesn’t make sense to use one site to service and inform both clients and investors. In fact, tailored messaging to one demographic may disrupt the intended experience for the other entirely. If your website is already heavily used by clients, consider a separate IR or Corporate website.
    2. Is it appropriate to consider optimizing my entire website? Conversely, if you’re a company that doesn’t use its website for clients (i.e. mining), consider optimizing your entire website.
    3. How does my website look?  In order to engage investors, your website needs to look both professional and beautiful. An attractive, aesthetically appealing website makes a difference – it will automatically add some credibility to your company and it will visually excite the visitor, providing a more memorable and positive experience.  
    4. How easy is my website to navigate? A website can’t just look great – it has to be user-friendly and easy to navigate. Website usability is an entire field of expertise, and it goes way beyond the structure of main menus and the inclusion of a site navigation bar.  
    5. How quickly and easily can visitors determine the basics about my company? For an effective IR-optimized website, you’ll need to make it easy for any visitor to quickly identify who you are, what you do, and what makes you great. How quickly can your potential investors find this information? Is it presented in a clear, concise and consistent way?
    6. Can investors get all or most of the information they need to invest?  Not just your financials, and business information; do you include industry information?  Is there information on your management’s past?  Do you have a solid timeline with milestones your company is looking to achieve?
    7. Do you have an email list sign up for investors and potential investors? If investors aren’t ready to pull the trigger on their first visit, make sure there’s a place they can sign up to receive updates on your company so they may eventually invest.

If all of your answers to these questions is ‘yes’, then you may be ready to move on and focus on other elements of investor conversion optimization. However, like most companies, it’s likely that your answer to some or all of the questions is ‘no’. It’s perfectly understandable – aside from a few firms who design IR websites, there is not much being done to specifically address the needs of the ‘Engage’ stage of the ICO process, and even many current IR website firms don’t necessarily take this critical stage into account.

If you’d like to learn more about how you can improve the optimization of your website for investors, or more about Investor Conversion Optimization, we’d like to invite you to contact us with your questions. We’d be glad to lend our expertise and help your company take potential investors from strangers to stakeholders.  For a free consultation, contact Jason Hilton at Jason@HiltonAdvisory.com.