For most of us in business, we have competitors that broadly do what we do. But what is it that makes us stand out? What differentiates us? Why us?
Not communicating your differentiators is a website 101.
In today’s competitive business landscape, standing out from the crowd is crucial for success. However, many companies fail to differentiate themselves effectively online, resulting in a lack of impact and a struggle to attract customers.
In this blog, we share 5 common pitfalls that prevent businesses from differentiating themselves on their websites. By understanding and addressing these challenges, you can take steps towards crafting a compelling and unique value proposition for your website that sets you apart from your competitors.
1. You lead with your services
One of the common mistakes businesses make is to position themselves solely based on the services they offer. While it’s important to align your offerings with customer expectations, relying solely on these factors can lead to a lack of differentiation. When multiple companies offer similar services, customers struggle to identify what sets one apart from the others.
Instead, consider leading the market by defining the problem and solution through a unique perspective and lead with this on your website.
By creating a market and educating customers on your worldview, you can shape their understanding and position your brand as the go-to expert.
2. You use vague statements that sell you down
By being vague, you can end up merely positioning yourself as the opposite of poor performers within your industry.
Whilst not being bad may be reassuring to potential customers, it fails to highlight any unique value you bring to the table. Differentiation should focus on your unique perspective, approach, or methodology that allows you to solve problems in a distinct and valuable way.
Instead of emphasizing being good instead of bad, emphasize the specific scenarios in which your approach delivers superior results, acknowledging that competitors may excel in different situations.
This is tougher than it sounds, as many popular soundbites are actually vague and don’t differentiate you at all :
“We offer the best quality at our price point” – don’t all your competitors say that they do this?
“We deliver high quality solutions” – you are hardly going to say “we deliver mediocre solutions”!
3. You use inactive words
Using overly polite and inactive language on your website, often recognised as “marketing speak,” hinders differentiation. Such language avoids specificity and attempts to cater to everyone, resulting in a lack of clear differentiation. We have a saying that sums this up at WSI – “if your not special to someone, you’re not special to anyone”
To stand out, you need to communicate with bravery, confidence, and precision.
Be willing to polarize your audience by speaking directly to the specific benefits and outcomes your unique approach offers.
By clearly articulating your value proposition on your home page, you will attract those who align with your unique offerings and turn those away who don’t, resulting in a more targeted and engaged customer base.
4. You make unsubstantiated claims
Making claims that cannot be externally validated weakens your differentiation strategy. Unsupported statements on your website undermine credibility and fail to resonate with potential customers. Instead, focus on strong, substantive points of difference that can be validated.
Steer clear of using buzzwords and generic phrases that lack concrete evidence. By providing tangible proof of your expertise and unique value, you build trust and confidence among your target audience.
As an example, think about “We are results focussed” vs “We deliver proven results for our clients”
5. The process you sell is not your own
Many firms rely on a standard “diagnose, design, implement, review” process as a differentiator, touting it as innovative and proprietary. However, unless your firm has truly discovered a distinct way of working, this process alone does not set you apart.
While it can be included on your website to outline your engagement approach, it should not be relied upon as a primary differentiator. Instead, emphasize the unique aspects of your methodologies, tools, or expertise that enable you to deliver exceptional results for your clients.
To thrive in a competitive marketplace, businesses must differentiate themselves effectively.
By avoiding the common pitfalls discussed in this blog, you can craft and communicate a compelling value proposition that sets you apart from your competitors. Positioning yourself as a market leader, focusing on unique perspectives, providing substantiated evidence of your claims, and emphasizing specific benefits and outcomes will help you stand out.
Remember, differentiation is not just about avoiding negatives; it’s about leveraging your strengths and offering a unique approach that delivers exceptional value to your customers.
Maybe you are thinking of redesigning your website, or you like your site, but it is not converting visitors into leads? Why not contact us for a chat to see if we can help you to improve the communication of your unique selling points on your site and in your digital marketing.