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Even in the case your business website exists for the sole purpose of being an online reference, or serving as an Internet version of your company brochure, you probably want it to help you generate new leads and sales opportunities.

Unfortunately, that’s not the way most websites are put together.

That’s because a lot of business owners (and more than a few marketing professionals) don’t really understand the recipe for online lead generation.

So what makes a good lead generating website?

A User-friendly Web Design

While we all like to believe a book isn’t judged by its cover, that simply isn’t the case. The same is true for websites. A professionally designed website builds credibility and leads prospects naturally from one area to another on a path you’d like them to take.

SEO and Social Media

Successful search engine optimization and social media marketing attract targeted buyers on an ongoing basis. Figure out who your audience is, where they’re listening and what they want to hear — then say it! Speak to your audience and they’ll come to you.

Fantastic Content and Special Offers

This goes hand-in-hand with #2. Once you attract your prospect to your site, it’s good to have some sort of conversion mechanism that convinces visitors to take the next step and keep coming back for more. Consider adding a targeted report, a free sample of your product, or a discount promotion code to each of your landing pages.

Without these main ingredients in place, you are left with a business website that isn’t really serving its purpose. It either can’t attract prospects, doesn’t impress them, or won’t convince them to begin a business relationship with you. In those circumstances, generating leads is impossible.