The top 6 things every business needs online
These days most businesses realise they really need to have a website in order to be competitve, including bricks and mortar businesses. Sadly, many of them have no idea what they need to have on their website in order to improve their business and increase their sales. So to help these businesses out, we've created this simple guide to the top things that have been winners for our clients online. When you're reading through this list, have a think about your own website and how it could be improved by making some small improvements like those below.
1. An easy-to-find site
There's no point in having a website if no one can find it. You can spend all your time and money creating a professional site, but if you aren't doing anything to promote it then it's just a waste. The first step in creating an easy-to-find website is to choose a domain name that makes sense. Don't try to be too clever - just use your business name because that's what people will look for. You also need to put your website address on everything (business cards, signs, ads, uniforms, email signatures etc.) so people know about it.
Draw people from your advertising and promotions directly to your site, and draw further attention to your offers to increase their effectiveness.
2. More than one way to capture details of leads:
Someone that browses your site is just a visitor, but if you can capture their contact details and add them to your database, they become a lead that you can hopefully convert into a customer. So what are you doing to catch the details of these visitors? You need to be doing a few different things to get them interested enough to give you their details. The key to this is that you will have to offer them something in return for their name and email address, because no one gives out their information over the internet for free anymore. It has to be something that is relevant and valuable to them and it needs to be prominent on your website so they can actually find it. Here are some ideas:
3. Opportunities to demonstrate your expertise:
People are more likely to become customers of your company if they think you are an expert in your industry. You need to show your knowledge and expertise on your websites so you can attract leads and convert them to paying customers with your knowledge and reputation. Well-written content is a great start, but it's not enough on its own - you need something that will make you stand out from the crowd. Here are some strategies:
4. A new way to share your success stories:
As mentioned, testimonials are a great tool for showing how great your business is. However, it can sometimes be difficult to get good testimonials from your customers so you might end up with lots of general "I'm so happy with your products" testimonials which aren't really that useful. A great way around this is to write success stories about your customers yourself and then get them to approve them. By writing a story, you can really focus on what the client's problem was and explain in-depth how you provided a solution for them. You can make it more interesting with pictures and quotes and even link the page directly to the products that were used by the client, making it a great sales tool. People love to read about people or businesses similar to themselves and can more easily relate it to your services in the form of a story.
5. Something to draw people back to your site regularly:
Most people that visit your site won't buy something straight away - it generally takes 3 or 4 exposures to a business before a person buys from them. Therefore you need to be implementing strategies that will draw people back to your site reguarly so you can work on converting them into customers. If you want people to come back to your site, it needs to be interesting and engaging and offer something more than just information on your products. You also need to keep yourself at the top of their mind with regular promotion. Here are some ideas to get prospects coming back:
6. Add value for your clients
The reason why 7 out of the 10 clients left your business was because they believed you didnt care - it costs 6-8 times more to attract new clients than it does to keep your existing clients, so it is really important to look at how you can retain your clients and keep them happy.
Regularly communicate with them - news, industry updates and tips that would be of interest to them; special messages on their birthdays or special anniversaries; find out what they really think of your services/products with client feedback surveys; invite them to special events. These strategies will keep your business at the top of their mind and strengthen your relationship with them.
Make it easy to do business with you - set up a secure client backend area to your site that they access via a client login, with common forms, tips and forums that make it easy for them to login to obtain information of value to them and you; create a client-only ordering systems that showcases your products and special client prices, set up a ticketing system to manage your client queries (so they can track their queries and you can manage everything effectively).
7. A way to facilitate sales:
The overall aim of any business is to get sales. Your website can be a very effective tool for this, even if your product can't be sold online. If it is possible for people to buy your product over the internet, you need to get a shopping cart on your site that displays all your wares professionally and makes it easy for people to buy. The best shopping cart software these days even comes with inventory control systems to make it hassle-free for you to sell online.