Tips for a Great Website
Marketing your small business can be a tough job. Most small business owners don’t have the resources to hire someone to do it all for them, so they do the best they can on their own. If you find yourself in this position, I hope you have found this blog series helpful. This blog post (the last in the series) will focus on your website.
If you’ve followed this blog series, you have your logo, business card, and brochure. You might also have started creating a newsletter. Those are all great for getting organized to build a website. Here are some things to consider
This is where a lot of people get stumped. If you have a brochure, use that as a building block. Websites are an expansion of your brochure. Here’s where you toot your horn: give credentials, list awards, share the history of your company as well as your philosophy, mission, and vision. A lot of people are shy about sharing all their accomplishments during casual or business meetings. If you are one of those people, just hand over your business card (with your website listed, of course) and suggest they check you out. If you have a professional designation, tell people what that means…what do the letters stand for and how does that set you apart from your competition.
Obviously, your website should include your services or products. Whether you share your pricing structure is up to you and your industry. Take a look at what others are doing in your field.
You will also want to make sure you have a way that people can contact you (Contact Us page). If you are a home-based business, you do not need to list your home address. Simply state that you are a home-based business and prefer the initial contact be via email or phone or whatever you are comfortable with.
Use the tried and true 5 Ws: Who, What, Where, When and Why
Who – who are you: a short bio of employees is appropriate. Pictures are nice, too, especially if they reflect the personality of your business (professional or more relaxed/candid).
What – what do you do/sell
Where – where are you, how do people reach you
When – what are your hours, are they set or by appointment only
Why – why should people do business with you, what makes you unique; include testimonials of existing customers.
All content should be written in the third person. With certain content, like a bio or mission/vision statement page, first person is OK, but set it off with quotes.
Not all fonts are web friendly. Keep that in mind as you dress up your website. Before you make it “public,” go to the library and look at it on their computers. Ask friends to see it on their devices. There are just a few fonts that are mobile-friendly. Just know that a fancy font may not look so fancy, if that particular font is not loaded on your customer’s or potential customer’s computer.
Use a color scheme that is in, or compatible with, your logo. Search the internet for color themes, if you are not sure. ALL of your pages should use the same “template” of colors and layout. If you change every page, visitors to your site will wonder if they are on the same site as they go from one page to the other.
Media: photos, videos and flash
Good luck on marketing yourself and your company. I would LOVE to hear what you found most helpful in this series. Also, please share other tips you have.