Getting the most out of a small business website.
Whilst it is difficult to attain the kind of the authority online that big brands take for granted, that doesn’t mean you cannot compete. Although you are likely to have fewer resources, a small business website can still deliver fantastic returns. There are only a few simple rules to follow. Here is a quick look at how to build your brand and rank higher-up on Search Engines.
It’s all about the consumer.
User Experience (UX) has to be taken seriously. Get it wrong, and you can expect as many as 88% of your potential consumers to never come back to your website. That would be disastrous. By UX, we’re specifically talking about the connection you make with your audience. This is made up of many things. Including; interactive design, video, nice graphics and engaging content. Equally, though it is about how easy your website is to use. How quickly visitors can find the information they are looking for. And, whether it appears that you really do know what you’re talking about.
A small business website relies heavily on you, and your designer, or, let’s say instead ‘digital marketing partner‘ aligning visitor expectation with your own business needs.
This digital experience, or, more widely, digital marketing is vital.
And, whilst many people only market their business through their Facebook Page, how do we know if that will be enough in the future? Especially if the Search Engines do not continue to rank Facebook favourably. We’re strong advocates of social media. However, your marketing should not rely on just one opportunity.
Branding and Business Education.
Building a brand is just as important to a small business as it is for a large corporation. Everyone started somewhere right? A consistent brand image creates trust. No two ways about it. And, if you can build on that trust, things will change rapidly for your business. A good place to start is by creating a brand image board. This style guide will help to define how and when to use a particular logo set, font face, colour palette, and images. Eventually, it leads to a consistent and trustworthy style both online and for print marketing.
The first step in achieving this is by educating your digital marketing partner on your business. In fact, if they didn’t ask for this kind of information from the outset, they may not be the partner you really need.
Getting this right can increase your potential revenue by as much as 23% – Wow! One-out-of-four people will be tempted? That’s got to be good for business. Check out an earlier blog post where we talk about improving your brand image.
Go on a journey through your existing business website
Look around your website, if you have one. Does it really deliver? If you feel that you cannot look at it objectively, ask a friend to review it for you. Things to look for include making sure it works on mobile devices, and across different platforms and screen sizes.
Ask yourself if you feel that a ‘new visitor’ would easily find what they are looking for? Have you optimised your website design so that they can find you on search engines? Make sure visitors are not disappointed with the content when they get there. Ultimately, when you add a new product or write a news story – think about it from the users perspective. Make sure that it is without spelling mistakes or grammatical errors.
Let’s say you’ve got the website design, and look ‘n’ feel nailed. Now you need to concentrate on attracting the consumer. What is the best way to get them to interact with you? Well, simply, you need to give them a reason. And, as tempting as it is, try to avoid just selling. Instead, motivate the consumer to take an interest in your brand, and create in them a desire to “want to buy from you”.
Irresistible offers – always work? Yep, they do! However, can you afford it? And, if you’re too bold with this one, i.e. “if it’s too good to be true…” you’ll lose them instantly. So, be measured. The goal here is not to sell off your products and services at the lowest market rate. Rather, it’s to make those assets more attractive to the consumer than those of your competitors. Why does anyone buy a product from one retailer when an identical product is available from another retailer? Perhaps even at a lower price. One word. Trust!
Call to Action!
Create a powerful ‘Call to Action’ that will encourage a consumer to investigate further. Ensuring that when they follow the link; you have something of real value to offer. Whether it’s a product or a service it doesn’t matter. It has to solve their problem.
Want to know more?
Learn how to fix your website…
Small Business Website Costs
Small business website = small costs. Most of the time. At Gecko Design we do not charge per page. And, you may not even need us for monthly maintenance and updating if your knowledge and skills are good enough. We do provide training if you want to ‘go it alone‘…
One thing is certain though, there is little point in paying for a website if no-one is going to find it. At some point, you’ll need a partner that can help you attain a positive search engine rank, and who can support the rest of your digital marketing needs. In Cyprus, we have seen huge differences in the cost of providing these services. You should, therefore, shop around for the best deals.
It’s a good idea to have a marketing budget.
The amount will vary depending on your competition, whether or not you are a seasonal business and even the age of your domain name and website is also a factor. An existing business competing in a crowded market should be prepared to build their brand across a number of platforms. Facebook, for example, has some great paid marketing opportunities.
Seasonal businesses will have to spend over a shorter period – but probably will still need a good marketing budget to compete with similar businesses. And, anyone with a brand new website will quickly discover that it is very hard to rank on search engines at the beginning. Therefore, Google ‘Adwords’ may be the best option to improve short-term visibility.