Well, you did the hard thing, you built your first website. It looks pretty good, your friends can see it, your mom likes it. Now what??
If you are like most small business owners the fact that you have a website seems like a huge mountain climbed and time to put the computer headaches to rest. Not so. Having a website does not mean you will get website visitors. You still need to go out there and find business, and that also means finding ways for potential customers to engage with your website.
I am always happy to help, so here are a few next steps for you to consider now that your website is live.
I know some people who do a great job Tweeting, some upload amazing photography to Instagram, others post super informative things on their Facebook page, and yet others can write a blog post that engages you so well you want to cry. The problem lies in not letting each of these outlets connect with the other. Your customer based is spread across several places and it is your job to bring them together. If you are providing a wealth of information then you need to make sure your customers can access it.
If you are using WordPress there are many good plugins out there that will allow you to post in one type of social media and then connect that post to all of the others. If you post a new pic on Instagram your Facebook page will be updated. If you create a new blog post on your website your Twitter account will show a tweet with a link to it. Don’t miss this opportunity to engage with your customers.
Not everyone has the time to browse through all of the beautiful pages of your website. And no matter how logical/clear/great your website is there will be someone who cannot find your contact form. If you want to grab a potential customer don’t just make it easy to get in touch with you, make it ridiculously easy. This means putting a simply contact form on every single page of your site. Capture their name, email, and depending on what you do/sell something helpful or a question you think they might like answered.
The current trend for this is to offer something for free as soon as they sign up to your newsletter. Maybe you have a guide of how you do things or you will send a free sample, great offer this in return for an email address. Here again you need to make sure is quick and easy to use. Do not make your visitor think, as soon as they have to engage in further then, yes that sounds helpful, you might lose them.
It is also a good idea to not post your forms in the same place on every page. Think of where grabbing their attention is at its highest on each page and drop your quick and easy form in there.
We are expected to engage with so much online these days and we all use a filter to sift through it. Think of what websites make you stick around and why. Most likely it is because they spoke to you in some way, they felt like you might like to get to know them better. If you want more people to use your site, stay on it longer, and pass on the word, you need to give a little of yourself.
For many people this is where a blog comes in. You take the opportunity to talk about what you do in your own voice. If that includes swearing and talking about teddy bears, so be it. I can guarantee that there are swearing teddy bear lovers out there that will appreciate your viewpoint. And for those that don’t swear or like teddy bears, you will get a reaction from them, and a reaction is always good. That means they’ve engaged.
Review your site content now, and see if you have slipped into boring/bland no offensive speak. If you have, its time for a rewrite. Try to imagine you are describing your business to someone you have just met, and they love what you do, so you want to tell them more. How would you do that? Is that coming across on your website? It should.
Have a friend look at your site, then a few days later ask them to tell you something about it. Can they think of anything? If not, your message is not connecting, and if you are not connecting with someone who is your friend, how are you going to connect with complete strangers.