How continuing education programs create killer 'contact us' pages

Wed, May 02,2012 @ 08:00 AM
by Suzanne Kart |

continuing education, contact us pageOn your website, you can boost your action from your visitors by creating a killer ‘Contact Us’ page.

Most continuing education and lifelong learning programs have a Contact Us web page that lists the phone, street address, fax, email, website and mailing address. A number also have directions, a good feature that many customers find valuable.

But the standard Contact Us page does not encourage action.

Three Weaknesses
There are several weaknesses with the Contact Us web page for most continuing education and lifelong learning program websites.

  1. No personalization. People are more likely to contact a person than an office. Customers also relate better to people than impersonal offices.
  2. No call to action. When people come to your Contact Us web page, they are potential customers. But most Contact Us web pages do not encourage people to contact the program.
  3. Visual design. The Contact Us web page is often a text-only web page with copy but no images and little visual design.

Contact a person
In order to create more personalization, the Contact Us web page should encourage potential customers to contact a person. More people are likely to contact a person than an office.
Put the name of a contact person in your office before your phone number.

Put the email of your contact person as your email address. info@ is seen as more impersonal and less desirable than the name of a person in your office. This personalization usually leads to more business.

Listing a number of people in your office is often confusing. People are reluctant to email or phone the Dean or other CEO. And listing more than two people in your Contact Us page creates confusion, which often leads to inaction.

List one or two customer service staff for people to contact. Encourage and welcome contact

Most web pages either are neutral about or sometimes even discouraging in implications about contacting them. Instead, welcome and encourage people to contact you. Like the “5 Easy Ways to Register” copy that has worked so well for registration information in the print brochure, listing “X Easy Ways to Contact Us” also makes contacting you simple, and indicates to your website visitor that you encourage the person to contact you.

Instead of being an information page with lists of people, emails and other information, redesign your Contact Us web page to move, motivate and direct people to contact you by making contact simple, with choices, and with minimum or lack of confusion about who or how to contact you.

Offer as many of these ways to contact you as possible:

  • Call, with your phone number. It is very preferable to list only one phone number to call
    rather than multiple phone numbers, which creates confusion and complexity.
  • Email, with your email address. Again, it is very preferable to list only one email address
    to contact rather than multiple emails, which creates confusion and complexity.
  • Fax, with your fax number.
  • Instant Message, with a link to your website’s instant message service.
  • Social media, with links to Facebook, Twitter and other social media ways to get in touch.
  • Mailing address, last, least, but importantly, have your mailing address and walk-in address
    for those who want to come visit or send you correspondence.
  • At the time of this writing, phone number, email, instant message, and mailing address are the top four ways people want to contact you.
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