According to a recent article, nearly half of all small businesses surveyed have not yet invested in a website.
Why You Need Your Own Website
Some small business owners mistakenly believe free business listing resources like Google maps, YellowPages.com, Yelp.com, and Facebook pages provide all the web presence they need.
While those free online marketing resources can help, they do not constitute a complete or adequate online marketing strategy for local businesses today. These free resources offer no control over how your business is positioned relative to competing business listings within those directories.
That's why every business owner needs a website today -- and not just any website, but a website that will get prospects calling, visiting, and buying from you.
With that in mind, here are 3 website essentials for local business owners:
1. Display Your Business Contact Information Prominently On Every Page
Your prospects and customers come to your website to find answers fast.
Display your business name and phone number prominently in the header where it can't be missed -- and put it in the footer of every page as well.
Consider including your business address and an email contact form or prominent link to your contact form on every page so prospects can email questions or comments quickly -- before they move on to a competitor's website.
2. Speak To The Customer -- Not Yourself
Don't devote too much space to "I", "we", "us" and "our." It speaks from the business owner's perspective, with a self-congratulatory tone -- neglecting to answer the most basic questions: "How can you help me? What's in it for me to do business with you?"
Here's an example of what not to do:
As leaders in the accounting industry, we are committed to providing close, personal attention to our clients.We take pride in giving you the assurance that the personal assistance you receive comes from years of advanced training, technical experience and financial acumen.
Our continual investment of time and resources in professional continuing education,state-of-the-art computer technology and extensive business relationships is indicative of our commitment to excellence.
We believe in the value of relationships.We view every client relationship like a partnership, and truly believe that our success is a result of your success.
Compare the writing above to the example below, where the web copy speaks directly to the prospect's likely needs and concerns, and explains the benefits the prospect can experience by calling this business today:
Is It Time to Replace Your Roof?
Are you tired of those unsightly black stains on your roof?
Do you think it's time to schedule an expensive roof replacement?
Before you spend more than you need to spendon total roof replacement:
Call Salley Roof Cleaning Today
A simple phone call could save you thousands of dollars in unnecessary roof replacement costs. Call now to request your free roof cleaning consultation.
3. Prompt Visitors To Take Actions That Lead To Sales
Think about what actions you want website visitors to take that will move them forward in the sales process - them make it easy for them to take that action. Do you want your prospects to:
- Call You?
- Join Your Email List?
- Request a Quote?
Every page of your website should prompt visitors to do what you want them to do - and make it easy for them to do it!
Your website doesn't have to be fancy, flashy or expensive to work as a sales and marketing tool. By incorporating these three essential elements, you will have a website that:
- Differentiates your business from the local competition
- Establishes your authority, credentials and credibility within your industry or market niche
- Builds a community of fans and loyal customers
- Markets your business 24/7, 365 days a year
- Becomes an asset that increases your business' resale value.
- 10 Easy Ways to Combine Usability & SEO to Increase Conversions (Kim Krause Berg)
- Optimizing Post-Conversion: Maximizing Your "Thank You" Page (Jordan Kasteler)
- 11 Ways to Increase Conversions on Mobile Devices (Pamela Hazelton)