When you’re a small business owner, you probably don’t have an extraordinary amount of extra cash to spend on a website. At the same time, you want to make sure that the site you do invest in looks great, is easy for a visitor to navigate, and keeps your brand message consistent. That’s a lot to bear in mind, particularly if you’ve never created a website for a business before. In order to get the most for your money, here are some tips all small business owners should bear in mind:
You want to provide plenty of detail about what you do and how you can help potential clients, but make sure there’s a method to the madness. If you pack the site with tabs and things to click and new windows that open within new windows, the user experience is going to be overwhelming. Before you begin the development process, focus on the most essential information that your site needs to convey. This will help your web designer create something that serves both your brand and your customer base effectively.
The content of your site sets the tone for the rest of the business, so make sure to give this area plenty of attention. Before you begin writing (or having someone else write) the text found on your site, give careful thought to what your company is all about. Are you creative and innovative? Buttoned up and professional? A family-run business? The words found on your site say everything a customer or potential customer needs to know to make a decision about whether they’ll do business with you. Choose them wisely. Also make sure that your messaging is consistent across all platforms. Whether you’re writing a newsletter, crafting a tweet, or writing about job available within your company, your business’s voice should remain the same.
You’ve got the eyeballs on your site, now you need to give visitors some guidance about the action you’d like them to take. Do you want them to contact you for a consultation? Subscribe to your e-mail newsletter? Follow you on Twitter? Add a call to action in several spots throughout your site so those scoping you out online have an idea about what to do when they arrive.
Before the site launches, you’ll want to figure out how you’ll maintain it when it’s up and running. An outdated site becomes detrimental to your business. If potential clients visit the page and see incorrect information, it’s likely that they’ll hit “x” and head to a competitor’s site where they can find updated details. Even small things, like leaving “coming this October!” up when you’re already well into November makes a potential customer question the validity of the rest of the information found on your site. Be aware of this.
If you’re looking for additional tips on maximizing your small business’s web presence, e-mail me today at firstname.lastname@example.org.