A website is no longer an option for entrepreneurs, small businesses, freelancers, and home-based businesses – it’s a necessity. Your website is the modern version of a storefront, so no matter what other marketing tools you’re using, it’s essential for helping potential customers find you online or have a place to go to learn more about you once they discover you.
But what goes into an effective website? With all the DIY sites out there like GoDaddy, SquareSpace, and WordPress, anyone can build a website – but not necessarily a good one! Here are 7 strategies to help you build a better website:
Engage the Reader – Immediately.
Too many websites make the mistake of immediately starting off with a statement about how long they’ve been in business, why you should hire them, or, even worse, the boring and redundant “Welcome to our website” line. A prospect is not looking for information about you quite yet, they’re searching for a solution to their unique problem or need, and THAT should be the focus of your home page. Use words and phrases they would use to describe their situation and then outline the solution you have to solve it.
Once your homepage headline and sub text captures the interest of potential clients by letting them know you understand their want or need, you will have to prove that you are the person/company to solve that need. Now you can describe your background, experience, and other credentials to give you credibility and give potential customers more confidence when deciding whether or not to work with you. Also be sure to expand on this in your “About Us” or “How We Work” subpages.
Have a Call to Action.
Get the most out of your website by using it as a lead generation tool. If someone spends time on your site, don’t just let them click away without engaging them further. Offer a newsletter, a free report, or even a free consultation. Do something to get them to act so you can find out who they are, engage them further and begin building a relationship.
Stand Out from the Crowd.
Beware of industry specific and DIY website services – the ones that offer websites specifically for Attorneys, CPAs, or Chiropractors. They all pretty much look alike and offer the same content to everyone – making it impossible for potential clients to differentiate you from your competition. Invest a little bit more in a site that brands you as unique.
Treat your website as your online storefront.
Your website is very often the first impression people get of your business. Make it visually appealing, interesting, informative and engaging. Make it different – add some fun elements, or news stories or free tips that your target market would be interested in. Make sure it’s professional, clean and easy to navigate – and don’t forget to check your grammar and spelling!
Use testimonials and case studies.
Once you’ve engaged your audience with your keen understanding of their situation and your impressive credentials, they’ll need proof that you can deliver. Having a page of testimonials and case studies is a great way to build trust and help the prospect take the next step.
Make it easy for a prospect to contact you.
Have a contact page that is easy to find with your email address AND your phone number. Put your phone number at least on the home page – if not, on every page. Making prospects search too hard for a way to get in touch with you could mean a lost sale.