At Web.com, we have hundreds of thousands of “Mom and Pop” customers who are running their own businesses. Many of them have local shops, and some of them are running a home-based enterprise on top of their “9 to 5” jobs. Nonetheless, we haven’t run across many businesses that have so many customers that they wouldn’t mind a few more.
So . . . if you have a website for your business, you have a great opportunity to attract more customers to your store or prompt potential clients to pick up the phone and give you a call.
One of the best ways to draw in more customers is to spend more time talking about your company on your website. Because websites exist in the digital universe, there’s no extra charge for adding more words, and if you’re using a DIY website design package, it doesn’t cost you any more to add extra pages to your site. Best of all, search engines like Google, Bing™, and Yahoo!® (which now uses Bing results) are going to serve up your website for more searches if the words on your site match the things people are looking for.
For example, if you’re a landscaping company and you also offer tree removal, Google isn’t likely to show your site if the words “tree removal” aren’t found anywhere in your content. When you consider the many aspects of this service—such as permits, cutting, safety considerations, stump grinding, shredding, and wood disposal—you can see that you could easily create a paragraph about this one particular service, which might otherwise be a minor part of your trade. Nonetheless, there are scores of landscapers who would jump at a small job because it presents an opportunity to sell more work to the same customer in the next couple of months.
If you go into depth about your products or services, you’ll be improving your profile for the search engines, and you’ll be adding to the customer experience. If you’re unsure about what to write about, just invite some of your employees in for a brainstorming session. By asking the questions “What do we do?” and “Why are we better than our competitors?” you can usually create a list of several different topics that can be turned into content for your website.
Even if you’re not a natural writer, you can probably get the finer points onto a piece of paper and then recruit a family member or friend who can help you refine the copy. And don’t forget to talk about the communities you serve, because people generally use town names when they’re searching for local shops. People who spend a lot of time blogging or writing emails are usually a great help when it comes to content creation. (And don’t forget to do a quick spell check before you add the content to your site.)
Plus, remember that the “quick selling” points (including your phone number) should always be on the top part of a Web page, while the in-depth content should be found a bit lower on the page. This allows window shoppers and fast decision makers to get the gist of your site, while the slower deciders can dig into your content and learn more about your company.
You can get even better results from your website when you create specific pages for each of your key topics. For the landscaping concept discussed above, you might include individual pages for lawn mowing, leaf raking, tree removal, decorative rocks, and so on.
While it might take a few hours to find topics for your site and then turn them into a few extra paragraphs, you can often recoup the time and effort you invested with the money you make from a couple of new customers.
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