But today I want to move downstream and discuss table stakes. For those unfamiliar with the term, the Urban Dictionary colorfully defines it as “the minimum amount of effort your lazy [___] needs to expend to compete at work, in relationships and basically all facets of life.”
I don’t think we need to be that harsh, but for our purposes, we can say that table stakes are what customers have been trained to expect when they look to do business with someone in your industry. These things could include good customer services, returning their phone calls in a timely manner, keeping your promises, quick shipping, and so on.
But there are also more general types of table stakes that aren’t specific to any industry. And one of the most important places where this comes into play is on your website.
In working with various clients on their web presence and messaging, I’ve come to see a few patterns. So in service to them and to others with a nagging sense their website isn’t up to scratch, I offer my top 10 table stakes for B2B or B2C websites:
This isn’t an exhaustive list, but it’s a start!
Not having these items in place gives customers the impression that your business is not current, is not invested and frankly is not all that interested in being of service to them. Of course a business never intentionally neglects its website, but the effect is the same.
Don’t fall down at the first hurdle when prospects come to your website. Make sure they see what they’re expecting. If you do that, then you’ve started down the path to building the trust that’s essential for any sale.