Are you an established business with low online sales? This was the precise situation for Watergate Farm in Bedfordshire. Brothers, Chris and David, had developed a successful business over many years, raising sheep and turkeys. They had adapted their business in response to the various pressures on farming, and built a loyal following by providing a caring and personal service with high quality products. Despite all this, online sales could be counted on just one hand, representing just a fraction of their overall sales.

So, what was the problem?

The current website received a modest number of visitors, but the it was poorly constructed and badly laid out. To compound problems, the online shop was not an integral part of the website, but part of a bigger online store designed as a single market place for local food producers. This combination meant that visitors had difficulty navigating the site, and were then being asked to go somewhere else to buy the product. The resulting sales were non-existent.

So, why didn’t the off-site shopping solution work?

To understand fully what is going on, we need to look inside the mind of the shopper. When arriving on a website, the visitor is immediately looking for confirmation that they are in the right place. They want to know that the site they are looking at belongs to either a business they already know and recognise, or, that it belongs to a reputable company they can trust. If that website does not clearly represent the values they expect, many visitors will leave without bothering to further explore the site.

David Hunt Watergate Farm

David Hunt, owner of Watergate Farm

What does a website say about your business?


There are several essential elements required to ensure your website demonstrates good business values. Each one will directly affect the level of engagement and trust of visitors.

  • Clearly and consistently laid out
  • Well written language in small, bite-sized pieces
  • Good use of colour and well-chosen typeface
  • High quality imagery illustrating the business activities and products
  • Obvious methods of navigation around the website
  • Trust marks are present, such as logos of payment providers, quality standards, and so on
  • Customer endorsements and testimonials
  • Clear methods of contact and location information
  • Clear calls to action across the site
  • Continuity of user experience

Websites must be easy to use on all types of devices, especially mobile phones since most users are browsing this way. They must be quick, without lengthy delays whilst pages load, and they must be reliable and fully operational at all times.

What did we do for Watergate Farm?

You will be pleased to hear that we helped Chris and David resolve these issues. We completely redesigned the website using WordPress as the main platform. WooCommerce was integrated into the site to provide a totally integrated store with PayPal as the payment provider. Customers were optionally subscribed to an email marketing list in MailChimp during the checkout process to provide a facility for easy follow-up.

Watergate Farm Website

Watergate Farm Website

During the first three months of operation, almost 200 orders were made. What was even more impressive was the incredibly low bounce rates (visitors leaving the website after view just a single page), which averaged to just 4%, meaning 96% of website visitors went on to browse the website.

Watergate Farm Stats

Watergate Farm Stats

We were absolutely delighted for the business owners who were over the moon with the results of their new website and online store.

Check it out for yourself here:

If you’d like to talk to us about what how we could help your business, then why not give us a call today? Call Nick on 01933 731 002 or email at [email protected].

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