It’s hard to believe but some small businesses still don’t have a website. They believe that their small business can survive without one. That they’re too costly and time-consuming to create. But this couldn’t be further from the truth.
A website is one of the most cost-effective ways to build your brand and showcase your business to the world. It is the ultimate business tool and should play an important role in your overall marketing plan.
How a website can help your small business
Low-cost advertising – a website is one of the most affordable forms of advertising available. It has a far wider reach than any other form of marketing and will build your brand throughout the world.
Company accessibility – a website is available online, 24 hours a day. It never closes. When you can’t take calls, customers can leave enquiries on your website. It literally generates business as you sleep.
Increased sales – your website is always open for business. It can sell your products and services at any time of the day or night. Customer’s will appreciate knowing they can purchase your products online at a time most convenient to them.
It saves time – replying to customer queries takes time. A website allows you to list all your products and services in one place. Potential customers can determine whether you have what they need before they even pick up the phone.
7 elements your small business website should include:
1. User-friendly navigation – there is nothing worse than clicking on a website that is complicated to use. A good website is designed with the user in mind. It is easy to navigate and simple to use. Nothing turns potential customers away from a website faster than confusing or complicated navigation.
A well designed website will have a limited number of navigation icons or keys. It will have simple page titles that explain exactly what users will find when they click on the tab. Always name your navigation bar using words your target audience uses. Don’t try to be clever. Use clear, simple words your customers understand.
2. An attention-grabbing headline – the headline on your Home page is one of the most important elements on your website. It is the first thing people see when they visit your site. If it doesn’t grab their attention, you will lose them.
Your headline should be compelling. It should sum up your products and services in a few simple words. It should be powerful enough to entice visitors to stick around long enough to find out what you are offering.
3. Great copywriting – the key to a good website is creating content your audience wants to read. Your content should be clear, concise and written in a tone your audience can relate to. It should outline the benefits of your products or services and tell visitors why they need it.
The content on your website is often the first contact you have with potential customers, so make sure it hits the spot. If you create good content, it will tell customers that you are a professional company worth doing business with.
4. Fresh content – if you want to increase the number of visitors to your website, you have to keep your content fresh and relevant. Google loves fresh content and often rewards websites who update their pages by increasing their page ranking.
A regularly updated blog is one of the easiest ways to update your website and add fresh content. Make sure your blog is filled with helpful tips and tricks based around your industry.
5. Well-chosen images – there is nothing worse than clicking on a website with blocks of heavy copy. It doesn’t matter what the subject matter is, your website will instantly improve if you use images to break up your copy.
Adding images to your website will not only draw visitors in but will encourage potential customers to check out the other pages on your website. Product shots are a great way to increase your sales and generate interest in your brand.
6. A call to action – a clear call to action (CTA) is a vital part of any website. If you want people to buy your products or enquire about your services, you have to tell them how to do it. You have to make it easy for them.
If you want customers to buy your products, add a CTA button saying ‘CLICK HERE’ or ‘SHOP NOW’. If you want them to get in touch to discuss the services you offer, add a contact form or a link to your email address and phone number.
7. Your contact info – make sure your contact details are clearly listed on your website. Include everything – street address, mailing address, phone number, fax number, email address – everything. Make it easy for potential customers to contact you.
Businesses that only put an email address on their website come across as unprofessional, unreliable and deceitful. Full disclosure will make your business appear legitimate and help you seal the deal.
If you need a small business copywriter to help you with your content, contact me for a free quote.