5 Critical Elements Every Small Business Website Needs
With the right elements in place, your small business website should be a powerful tool to promote your brand and drive sales.
Your website is one of your most important business assets. It represents your brand, drives sales, shares social proof and more. That is, if you have all the right elements in place. Keep the following in mind as you build a new website or assess your current one. Sometimes a few small changes are all you need to get your website where it should be.
You contact page is one of the four most important pages on your website, according to Hubspot. There are two reasons for that:
- Small businesses are forever playing the “trust me” game. Many consumers already trust big-name brands and those that they’re loyal to. One way to make them trust you is to have your contact information readily available, including email, phone number and business address. Note that these need to be the same across all online properties (social sites, business listings and your website) or you risk losing the trust.
- You never know who’s visiting your website, from shoppers to investors. If you don’t have a contact page it creates unnecessary friction when people want to get in contact with you. Instead of looking elsewhere for your email or phone number, they may just leave your site altogether and look for another business.
Testimonials can make or break sales for you, and study after study has proven their value to small businesses. Brightlocal’s 2016 Local Consumer Review survey found that 84% of people trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation, and 74% of consumers said that a positive review makes them trust a local business more.
To get the most out of your testimonials, however, you have to design and display them effectively. With the popularity of video on the rise, video testimonials are a great investment. Not only can you display them on your website, but you can share them on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter as well—allowing you to get the most mileage from each one.
If you’re not ready for video testimonials, be sure to include a photo of the person, which boosts the emotional connection consumers have with the review.
In our mobile world, if your website isn’t optimized your mobile, you risk losing customers every time they land on your site from a mobile device. Why do you care?
- S. consumers now spend 5 hours per day on their phone.
- Tablet users spend 20% more money than those purchasing from a computer or laptop.
- 78% of mobile searches for business information end in a purchase.
- Is the site easy to navigate?
- Are elements of the page out of order or improperly sized?
- Are the menus easy to access and use?
- Are the ecommerce pages easy to use?
SEO pages are exactly what they sound like—pages designed for SEO—to drive traffic to your site based on related keywords. While many years ago keyword-stuffing was all the rage, white-hat SEO is the way to go now, so your SEO pages will need to provide value to visitors. Think: guides, calculators/tools, interactive content, and more. Here are a few ideas to try:
Coupon page: Retailers earn more than $29,000 in monthly coupons sales alone, according to a 2016 retailer study—so make your coupons easy to find by creating an SEO page. Make sure the meta data includes your business name, local region (if applicable) along with the words “discounts” or “coupons.” For example: “Brians Laptop Repair, San Diego, Coupons and Discounts.” This will help drive both traffic and sales, because 71% of U.S. internet users’ purchasing decisions were influenced by the availability of coupons and promotions.
Guide page: Consider the top-level keywords you’re trying to rank for, choose one, and design a guide around that keyword. For example, if your keyword is “water on my laptop” you might write a guide titled, “There’s Water On My Laptop: How to Fix It.” You’d likely include information about the first steps to take immediately after a spill. End the page with a call-to-action that includes pricing for your services and a phone number.
Quiz: People love learning about themselves, which is why content like the Buzzfeed quizzes go viral so often. Use this to your advantage by creating an SEO-based quiz for one of these pages. Again, choose a top-level keyword and include a call-to-action somewhere on the page.
Once your pages are created, share them on your social platforms and via email to drive traffic. Slowly you’ll build value with Google and the page will rank in search.
You have a business and you want to sell products or a service. The key is making it easy for customers to browse and purchase from you. This means, if you’re selling products, you may want to focus on making them available on your site, rather than solely doing so through a third-party seller:
“Choosing to use outside ecommerce sites such as Etsy or Amazon are sufficient, but in reality this is just another barrier to purchase. The best option is to add online ordering or a shopping cart to the website with the help of a product such as Paypal, or invest extra money into developing and maintaining a fully integrated ecommerce store,” said Zach Cutler, founder and CEO of Cutler PR.
If you use WordPress, there’s a wide variety of ecommerce plugins—Woocommerce and Shopify are two of the most popular—that can be used to manage the organization, presentation and purchasing flow of all products. They can be used for selling services and downloads as well.
Your website is just a few steps away from being a valuable asset to your business. Use these tips to get it up to speed, driving more traffic and encourage more visitors to purchase with each upgrade. If this isn’t your forte, pass the work on to your in-house team or a freelancer. Once it’s done, you can rest easy knowing online visitors are having an experience that represents your business.