Five Simple Ways (& Three Free Tools) to Optimize Your Local Business Website
As a local business owner, selling your products or services is the most important thing on your to-do list. While focusing on in-person sales is crucial for revenue and important for your business’s foundation, your website is often the first impression prospective customers have of your business.
Considering 97% of consumers search online for products and services, ensuring your local business is equipped to receive these potential customers through a well-done website is essential. Designing it to be mobile-optimized is also crucial; 96% of smartphone users have researched a product or service on their mobile device.
Since 60% of small businesses don’t have a website at all, creating a website for your business will not only attract online searchers to you; it will also give you an advantage over your competitors who aren’t online.
To help you get started, here is a compilation of the most important components you should have on your website:
1. Cover the Basics
Creating a website for your business may seem like a daunting task, especially if you aren’t tech savvy. However, your website doesn’t have to be complicated, or even fancy; first, it just has to be there. Start by including the most important information about your business, such as your name, address, and phone number in the footer. Make it easy for customers to either visit you or call with any questions.
Next, add some key messages and a list of your products or services, letting customers know what exactly it is you offer, and how you differ from your competitors.
Choosing a Content Management System (CMS): WordPress and Squarespace are the most user-friendly, cost-effective (WordPress is free!) options for creating a website without paying a pricey developer.
2. Use (Simple) Design to Your Advantage
After you have the basics down, it’s important that your website’s design is aesthetically pleasing without distracting people from the point of it: your product or service. Using your home page (the page most people are directed to from a search engine or review site) to showcase your most popular products or services as well your contact information is an effective way to grab consumers’ attention right away.
3. Help them spend money
Enticing them to take action when they come across your website, whether it’s to book a reservation or call for a price quote, gets them to consider your business as an option to fulfill their needs. Calling people to action as soon as they open your website will ultimately make them more likely to do business with you.
Make it easy to transact: Most online food ordering, reservation and booking SaaS businesses will have an easy-to-install widget that will create a button or section of your site where it’s easy for someone to convert. For a list of popular options, click here. (link to your other article!)
4. Make it Fast & Easy to Navigate
40% of customers will leave a website if it doesn’t load within three seconds, so there’s no time to waste. People are searching to find specific information that will meet their needs; if your website makes it hard for them to find what they’re looking for, they will look elsewhere.
Put only the most important things in your navigation bar, typically Home, About Us, Menu / Services / Prices, and Contact Us are sufficient. By organizing the information on your website into digestible sections, you make it easy for customers to quickly access the information they’re looking for.
Speed checker: Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool will tell you if your site needs a boost.
5. Add Insights, Photos, and Updates
Give customers a reason to come back to your website frequently by offering them relevant product or service updates, industry-related information, news, or blog posts. When you provide customers with more than a transaction, you establish credibility while enforcing how much your business cares about customers’ experience with you.
No time? No problem: Update posts don’t need to be lengthy. 100-300 words, once every week or two, is sufficient to improve your SEO value and show customers you care about their interests.
Creating a website that makes it easy for consumers to discover you, purchase from you and interact with the content you post can increase customer satisfaction and loyalty as well as your business’s revenue.
To learn how SinglePlatform can help manage your small business’s online presence, click here.