Abraham Lincoln understood the importance of preparation.
He was once quoted as saying, “If I have six hours to chop down a tree, I will spend the first four sharpening my ax.” I would have to concur with Honest Abe, and draw a correlation to your website.
At Mader Marketing, everything starts with engineering a great website for our clients. This is where the large digital marketing companies really drop the ball. Because they don’t have the time or personnel devoted to a single customer, they churn out cookie cutter websites automatically.
It’s critical that you understand why your website design requires time, fore-thought and expertise to separate you from your local competition. Truly, your website is the hub of your digital marketing.
Think of your digital marketing campaign as a wheel. Your website is the hub in the center and the spokes can be thought of as your different digital marketing tools, such as SEO, Google Ads, Google My Business, etc.
Everything flows out of and flows into your website.
Your website must be great. Cookie cutter doesn’t cut it. That’s why we spend so much time on our client’s websites.
The information age of the late 20th and early 21st century means that people not only have access to significant levels of information, but they expect it to be readily available.
Another major advantage of providing a great website to your customers is that you provide 24/7 access to information about your business and its products and services. Your business may close its doors overnight, but your website is busy marketing your brand and products to prospects and existing customers. It may show up in search results conducted by Internet users during the late night or early morning hours when your lights are off.
Having a website also allows your local business to sell more often to existing customers and reach additional customers. If you offer products and services for sale on your website, you give your customers a chance to buy on their own time and on their own terms.
Doing what your competitors do is not always necessary or even wise. An important reason you need a website is to stay on par competitively. Customers rely on search engines to find products or services. You need a website, just to have a chance to show up among their search results.
Websites have become business necessities when it comes to marketing products. The medium allows for plenty of room to share product details, reviews, photos, and videos that engage potential customers. Announcements often go out through online services and media stories, while blog posts and word of mouth can drive traffic to a website.
Email marketing is one of the most affordable and potentially engaging ways to market a product. Businesses that have built up opt-in email lists have a large base of customers who already are interested in the products they offer. Your website is the ideal place to capture email addresses of interested prospects.
Mobile marketing involves reaching customers on their cell phones and other mobile devices through text messaging and applications. Businesses can use text messages to send special messages to people on a marketing list. We are careful to design the mobile website applications to Google’s search specifications.
A customer-centric website leads to ease of use. The site should be clearly organized, easy to navigate and not bog down the user with needless information that confuses or distracts him. Organize the site so that it contains clearly labeled categories and include easy-to-find links or buttons for each category on every page. A disorganized site leads to frustration and could cause a customer to move on to your competitors’ sites.
A customer-centric website facilitates the process of problem or complaint resolution, which enhances the reputation of the company. Installing features such as a comprehensive “Frequently Asked Questions” page allows the customers to find answers to many common questions in one location.
A website designed with the needs and wants of your customers in mind serves as a type of silent salesperson for your products or services. By clearly stating the features and benefits of what you’re selling, your customers gain an understanding of the value of doing business with you. Clear and concise product descriptions, photos, videos and virtual tours demonstrating the product in action give customers the chance to get to know the product without having to see it in person.
Some people may be reluctant to purchase products over the Internet, especially if they are not familiar with the company. A customer-centric site allows you to overcome customer apprehension by providing detailed information about the company. Your home page and “About Us” page give you the chance to outline your background and your company’s history and provide photos and biographies of key players in your organization. Customers can discover that you’re a legitimate company staffed by real people, which helps alleviate any concerns.
Avoid using overly long paragraphs and large blocks of text when writing your website’s text content. While browsing the Web, people rarely take the time to read lengthy text content. Instead, they scan subheadings and bold text to learn the most important points quickly. Make sure your text content includes brief sections that stand out and clearly explains your product’s features and why someone should buy it.
A business website should have a clean and professional appearance that sets it apart from other websites without having elements that distract visitors from the primary content. Visitors are likely to interpret elements such as flashing letters, embedded sound and animations as being amateurish. If necessary, hire a professional to design the website for you.
The text of your website should conclude with a compelling call to action that encourages the visitor to purchase the product or to sign up to receive more information. When a customer stops reading and decides that they might return to the website later for further research, you have lost a sale. Encourage your customer to sign up for more information right away. If a visitor gives you her email address, this increases the chance that you will be able to make a sale later.
And there are more reasons to have a great website- but I think we have made our case.