1) Which Pages Do I Need?
Before you sit down with a website developer, you’ll want to map out the pages you want on your website. This saves time and money before you start the clock with a designer, and makes for a more organized representation of your brand and messaging. These are the five pages you’ll need to start with:
a. Home — Add a prominent call-to-action, and make it clear the way in which you’d prefer visitors to contact you.
b. About Us — This is where you can establish trust and a sense of community with your brand. It’s where you can create a relationship and connect on a more personal level. Share short bios of your staff and include something interesting about each staff member. Have a law firm? You might share that one staff member enjoys skiing on the weekends with family. Own a cupcake company? Be a bit more playful and tell us why Lisa loves watching Downton Abbey and having a bit too many chocolate chip cookies!
c. Products/Services — Start working up a list to share with your designer and include detailed descriptions, images, pricing, any warranties or return policies.
d. Customer Testimonials — Prospective customers are looking for solutions or lifestyle benefits – how can you give your visitors the opportunity to understand why you are different and how you have helped others? Display reviews for products or testimonials for services. It’s a quick and easy way to showcase your customers’ opinions. After all, most people are influenced by the buying behavior of others, whether strangers or friends and family. You can copy positive reviews from Yelp and link them back to the original review so viewers know it’s the real deal.
e. Contact Us — Make it very easy for people to access phone numbers, email addresses, your hours of operation, location and a Google map so it’s easy for anyone to pull up on their mobile phone for quick directions.
Quite often I see businesses cramming too much information into websites, which causes much confusion and leads to higher bounce rates and lower conversions. You want to make the most of those first couple of seconds when a user lands on your website. Make sure you know your target consumers, and then attract them with the right imagery, colors and verbiage (short and sweet) that speaks to them, compelling them to stay and take action. Look at other websites you personally view often, what elements of design do you like most and why? Are there other similar businesses to you that have an awesome design? Share it with your designer to aid in the design phase.
3) What Does “Take Action” Mean?
When you acquire a visitor, you want them to take action. That could mean calling for an appointment, buying something, using a code for a future purchase, signing up for your mailing list or a promotion. Your goal is to generate sales and capture future customers. Don’t be afraid to spell out exactly what you want customers to do, like: “Order Now!” or “Call Us for a Quote” or “Sign Up for VIP Discounts!” or “Get Expert Advice Now!” If you offer something of value in return for their information, they will be more likely to move on your words.
4) Everyone Needs to Get Social!
Ever stumble across a website with way too many social media share buttons? What is way too many? In my personal opinion, six or more buttons is too much. In order to decide which social media share buttons to put on your website, you will need to know who your target demographic is and then which of your social media networks are receiving the most interactions. Social media buttons are great because they can generate free advertising as more and more people share your content. After you have placed the buttons on your site you should test them and monitor how they convert for your site.
5) Mobile Friendly
Did you know that one in every five billion people in the world own a smartphone? And smartphone use goes beyond time spent while waiting in line, sitting in traffic, shopping; it also takes place while in public restrooms, in bed, while spending time with family and friends, on a date or even places of worship. It’s sad to say, but what does this mean for businesses? Your ability to capture more eyeballs is greater than ever before. So make sure your website is mobile friendly! Ask your website designer to explain options for a responsive design or separate mobile site design.
Have questions about your new website? Looking for expert advice? Give us a call, tell us about your business and we’ll be happy to discuss your options.