Does your website attract new business for you? If you are like most businesses, you are probably missing the opportunities that a market focussed website would bring.
Here are the 4 keys that are essential for an effective website.
1. Professional Image
Make the opening view of your web site totally compelling.
The screen that your prospects see first should get their attention immediately and pull them in. So ensure your site has good design values, don’t just throw it together. An amateurish design presents your business as unprofessional to your prospects. And there is nothing that looks more unprofessional than a web address that is not your own domain name. Hosting your website at your ISP gives you an address like www.bigpond.com/users/~mybusiness which is fine for personal websites or hobbies but www.mybusiness.com.au will project the message that you mean business.
2. Prospect Focused
Many businesses use language on their website that focuses on themselves (“Our Mission”, “our products/services”, “we pride ourselves” etc. The visitor to your website does not care about you, only what you can do for them. You should use the word “you” two or three times more than you use the words “We” and “Our.” Your words should address your target market’s top problems and then show how you solve those problems. Describe your solution, along with the benefits you offer. Include a statement that differentiates your practice from your competitors in a compelling, meaningful way, and that answers the question, “why should I do business with you?”
3. Call to Action
Good sales people know they have to “ask for the order”, otherwise their prospects will procrastinate or fall victim to a more pro-active competitor. It is no different on the internet. On all key pages of your website you must tell your prospects what you want them to do. What is your “most wanted response”? Be clear what your goals are for your website and then ask your visitors to take the next step e.g. “Fill in our form for a quote”, “Call us now on 9399-9999 to reserve your place”, “Buy Now”. If you want people to make an inquiry, don’t rely just on email. Have a contact page that includes your office phone, mobile phone, office address and email.
4. Get targeted visitors to your website
All of your marketing tactics should work together to support one another. Since your web site is a key part of your marketing collateral, you should drive traffic to your website using a number of channels. For example:
- Optimize your site for search engines. This requires the help of a professional to make sure that you come up high on search engines. It takes a while to see results but the benefits can be long term and very cost effective.
- Drive traffic with cost-per-click solutions like Google Adwords and Overture. This offers a simple, low cost way for you to have your web address come up during searches. You only pay per click through to your site. Plus, you choose how much to pay per visitor and can set a daily budget.
- Put your web address on every single piece of marketing collateral you have, including invoices, proposals, advertising, brochures, envelopes, your car, fax cover sheets, press releases, your voice mail message, the company shirt, your office sign and door and anything else you can think of.
Why leave money on the table with an ineffective web presence? Get started now to leap over your competitors with a web strategy that markets your business with impact.
About the Author:
Janet Pearson is Director of Technology Matters, a Melbourne consultancy that specialises in breathing new life into old websites and bringing businesses onto the web with a bang. Call 03 9399 9054 for more information.