Seven key ingredients of a good business website
There are many things in the mix for making your website the best it can be. Here’s seven ingredients to consider:
1. Phone number
Your business phone number should be clearly visible on every page of your website, not just the “contact us” page. “Perth is one of those places where people still like to pick up the phone,” says Andrew Doyle, owner of Joondalup’s Doyle Digital.
To understand the huge difference a few numbers can make, Doyle relates the story of a client who recently removed headers from the top of his web pages which contained his business phone numbers.
Conversions flowing from the company’s Google Adwords account immediately dropped by almost 50 per cent.
“The phone numbers were still on the contact page, they just weren’t as easy to find,” Doyle says. “Unfortunately, in the digital world, you have to make everything as idiot-proof as possible, otherwise it’s a missed opportunity.”
2. A call to action
“As soon as your webpage loads, people need to know where you are, how they can contact you and what you can provide for them,’’ says Doyle.
“If you have any key ‘calls to action’ you need to let people know about that straight away.” A call to action is any incentive for customers to choose you over your competitors, such as health fund rebates, free initial consultations or discounts for new customers.
These practical ‘what’s-in-it-for-me’ messages are much more effective front and centre on your site than clichéd slogans citing your years of experience.
3. Unique content
Google loves text – but hates duplication. Fresh content helps establish your authority in the field and helps your site rank higher.
Perth digital marketing consultant Lauren Benedetti recommends a simple blog, regularly updated. Providing answers to any industry FAQs means people will find genuine value in your site which builds brand trust and can lead to more valuable links and shares.
4. Mobile friendly
Last year Google changed its page-ranking algorithm to favour mobile-friendly websites; that is, sites that automatically resize to fit users’ screens. Most customers – even for B2B firms – now access your site via a mobile device, so get on top of this.
5. Great images
Images are huge component of any website. Although Google cannot crawl images, they are key in connecting with consumers, Benedetti advises. Use real image over stock images if possible.
“I would recommend getting a professional to help you with imagery.” Real images of your staff and business will always have more impact than stock photos. These real-world images also build trust.
While not strictly part of your website, backlinks (i.e. other webpages that link back to your site) are pivotal. Google ranks your site according to how many reputable backlinks you have.
Links from government or news websites are particularly valuable. This is why good content is key. If you have a blog or video people find particularly informative, they will link to it from external forums or websites, which in turn boosts your ranking.
Testimonials are one of the most effective ways to build trust in your brand. Consumers are wary of “spin”, and hearing from other customers in their own words is incredibly powerful.
Simply email a few of your satisfied customers and ask if they could help you by providing a testimonial for your website. Attaching an image of the person to their words further bolsters the trustworthiness of the testimonial.