Why Should I Invest?
The time has come! You’ve done all the leg work and are now ready to get your small business started by taking on your first clients or finding your first customers. Your business is officially registered and it’s time to get on that money making grind! All you have to do now is create a quick and easy website using a cheap builder and you’re ready to go right?
Not so fast.
One of the last things that you want to do is go cheap on your website. It’s easy to do. Websites and the internet are hard to understand. However, once you understand the power your website can have on your business it will arguably become your best sales tool.
That’s why every small business owner should invest in their website.
A website never sleeps and is always working to your benefit if created properly. It’s the combination of an excellent salesperson and a powerful marketing tool. There are various different elements that go into having an effective website. Here are a few things to consider when thinking about what goes into the selling machine that is a website.
Copywriting can be one of the most overlooked aspects of a good website. How you write your content and pitch your services is crucial on the impact of your bounce rate (% of visitors who do nothing and leave upon first arrival) and your conversion rate.
A lot of websites spend too much time focusing on writing and talking about themselves. This isn’t the best method. Of course, writing a bit about your company is important, but don’t make it your sole focus.
Your website visitors want to know how you can help them, whether that’s offering a service, or a product that they are looking for. I’m sure your founding story for your business is great and belongs in a section on your website, but unfortunately not many potential clients or customers care too much.
There are a lot of effective methods for changing up your copywriting on your website and I will dive into this topic in a future blog post. Something to take away is to remember to write your copy with more you’s than I’s.
If this is something you struggle with, it might be something to consider outsourcing. Great copywriting can convert sales, and on the fence customers leading to more money for your business.
You can also educate yourself and learn quickly with some books. There are lots of great books on this topic and most are easy and quick to read.
Calls to action
Making sure you have your calls to action defined and easy to interact with for your users is an important part of the user experience. You want your website to be a customer journey that is smooth and easy to follow. Having clearly defined goals for your website and the action you want your user to take is important.
For example, if you want your user to sign up for your newsletter, then you need to make it easy for them to do so. In any section where you have your blog or information about your company there should be a call to action button that allows them to sign up.
You can also provide buttons and text that guides them and sets them up to complete their journey by giving their email. On your home page you could have a recent posts section with a link to your recent articles. Within that recent article page, you can offer a form for your user to sign up. Adding these within the blog post is also an effective and easy way to capture subscribers.
That is just one example of how a call to action works on a website. You can have more than one call to action on your website. The important part is remembering that the goals of your website represent a journey and something of a user experience (UX) for your user. You want to make that journey enticing and clear so your user wants to complete the action you want them to.
SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
SEO is crucial to obtain organic traffic for your website and is basically how you are found on Google and other search engines. SEO is a long game and takes lots of time and commitment to see true results. The days of stuffing your website with keywords and getting a high search result are over. Google is all about the content game now and the value that you’re bringing to your website.
Keywords of course still play a role, but things like backlinks (links from other sites) and answering questions within your content that people search for are more important. This is where your website can play a huge role in how people can find your business and hopefully do business with you.
A website can be your best weapon for SEO as it can be your home for people to link to, and also your content. Creating content and helping people find solutions to their problems has a big impact on your ranking. A blog, links to social media pages, well written content, optimized images, backlinks, and a mobile responsive website are crucial to finding your place in search results.
On-page and off-page SEO are two different aspects. Your website plays the biggest role in your on-page SEO, but can also affect the off-page SEO has well. I will dive further into the differences in a later post, but for now, here’s a great post to look at.
Technical SEO is another important SEO factor. Technical SEO includes things like ensuring your website has a site title, meta description (snippet excerpt found on Google), and social cards for Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. Things like sitemaps, and a robots.txt file are also helpful. These are there to help Google’s page scanner find and read your files. This information is then used by Google to help determine your ranking.
SEO is a blog post in and of itself and can be covered in far more depth. This is just a quick summary of how a properly done website can boost your chances of a high ranking. Just remember, SEO is a long game. It can take anywhere from 6-12 months to finally start seeing your results. Of course, there are other factors that can speed or delay the process.
Consistency and value are your best friends when it comes to SEO.
A First Impression
As human beings, whether we like to admit it or not, we often judge things based on first impressions. This goes for judging the status of someone based on their car, their house, the way they’re dressed, or unfortunately, the way people look. Research shows that visitors to your website will make a judgment on the visual appeal of your website in as little as 50ms.
The human brain and the psychology behind it is a fascinating concept in many things we do in life that we ourselves don’t even understand. Your business website doesn’t want to be on the negative end of that spectrum.
The good news? You don’t have to do anything crazy or over the top to make your visitors want to stay on your website. You just need to make sure you are following basic design principles and you will do just fine. Not all of us are artistic geniuses or have the ability to capture attention based on our design skills. I certainly have my struggles. However, we all can follow basic principles to make our website meet median standards.
Some things to consider when designing your website are to ensure you have proper alignment of elements, consistent typography (font size, colors, etc.), a defined color scheme, use of whitespace, and proper use of images. There are also various templates you can utilize to help get you started and guide you through the website building process.
Just like a lot of things in life, being consistent is a key element to the success of your website. The last thing you want is for people to easily find your website, only to leave immediately upon arrival because your website isn’t visually appealing. Don’t lose potential clients and customers because you wanted to save a couple bucks on not investing in a website.
Data and statistics are becoming more and more useful in the way that we analyze and find solutions to our problems. We are seeing this in all aspects of society whether it’s business, sports, social media, or even relationships with online dating apps.
It’s important for the success of your business to have access to analytics on your website. Why? Because this gives you the chance to read into your clients/customers and their behavior. Analytics can give you loads of information including location, age, time spent on your website, and more. This information can help you with your marketing and identifying who to concentrate your marketing efforts towards.
Knowing your target market and making sure that you aren’t wasting your marketing efforts is crucial to the success of your business. Effective marketing can grow sales and lead to more success. Website analytics are great tools for information that you should add to your toolbox.
Many small business owners either don’t know how, or neglect implementing analytics into a website. Google makes adding this a relatively easy task with Google Analytics. If you don’t know how, then you should make it a priority to request this service when hiring someone to build your website. If you’re doing it yourself, then be sure to follow proper instructions online for how to implement this.
Having analytics available for your business will make your marketing efforts ten times easier. It will also make understanding your customer/client much easier leading to more leads and sales.
We could sit here all day and talk about all the important reasons to invest in your website. It’s such an essential tool for your business and can be surprisingly overlooked by a lot of business owners in an attempt to save some cash. These are just some of the reasons why you should invest. An SSL certificate, sitemap, backlinks, working links, proper domain name, and hosting are some other important features.
Trust me, I get it. I’m a huge fan of saving money. However, at the end of the day, an investment in your website can make you far more money than you would save using a cheap option, or trying to do it on your own without knowing the basic principles.
Of course, with a little guidance and learning, making an effective website yourself can be done. That’s why I’m here to help! This is just the first of many upcoming blog posts that will be designed to help you grow your web presence and make sure you’re taking the right steps to make money for your business.
Be sure to subscribe if you like this content and want more free marketing and website tips for your business! I will be covering all of these topics and more in the weeks to come.
Head over to the services section to get an idea of other important features to have on your website.
Thanks for reading!