The internet has grown up since the late 1990’s. 20 years ago, most people could neither afford it nor had any idea what the internet was. Nowadays you have babies growing up playing YouTube videos on tablet devices.
As times change businesses need to learn to adapt. Before it was fine to have an ad on yellow pages or maybe a local ad in the newspaper. That and a nice looking business card and you were good to go.
Today’s business card of the internet is your website. Amazingly enough, many businesses either don’t have one, or have one that isn’t optimized properly. The funny thing is that building a website is actually cheap and easy nowadays, but that’s a conversation for another day.
Even though many businesses know they need a website, they are still confused as to what is it’s true purpose. I’ll tell you. It’s to sell. Period. Your website is your first virtual connection with a client. That can be the difference between you going out of business or crushing your competitors.
Here are three things that every business website should have.
1. Solid About Us Page
Some businesses state where there info is and how to contact them. While that’s fine, that’s enough. When someone is checking out your about us page they are probably showing an indication that they are interested. It’s good to not only have the basic info about your credentials but also to include what you do. How long have you been doing what you do? Are you a family businesses? Have you been in the neighborhood for a while? The more someone can relate to you, the more they’ll be willing to trust you.
2. Focused Landing Page
A landing page is the page a person who clicks on your ad lands on. If you are linking your ads to your homepage, you are already doing something wrong. Landing pages should have a clear call to action and as little information as possible that can distract a potential client from taking that action. For most businesses this call to action either comes in through filling out a form or through a phone call.
The phone number and form should be above the fold. While it’s cool and tempting to talk about the businesses in that page, 8 out of 10 times you’ll most likely get better results if you focus on the end results you can provide for the interested client.
3. Not Enough Calls to action
Some examples of calls to action are “Call Us Now” , or “Fill Out for a Free Quote”, etc. There should be some type of call to action on every single page of your site. While there are subtle and not so subtle ways of doing this, it shouldn’t be hard for a prospective client to get in touch with you . If they found one of your pages, and continue to browse, there’s an opportunity to make that sale.
I know I previously said three things, but I need to mention last topic that sadly plagues some business websites in 2015.
Moving images, movies, flash; those things need to go.
We live in the internet age and no one has time to wait for a website to load. If you site doesn’t load in less than 3 seconds, you’ve probably lost a potential customer to the competition. If it’s not mobile optimized, the repercussions will be worst in the long haul when it comes to conversions and search engine rankings.
While it’s great to have images depending on the type of business you have, those images should be optimized to be the highest quality at the smallest file size possible.
Consumers are smarter today, but the same principles of the market hold as they did thousands of years ago. Your job is to sell. Your website is just another extension of that.