All kinds of businesses have websites today but many companies fail to acknowledge, understand and leverage their websites to grow their business. Several small businesses and tradespeople feel they can’t justify the cost of creating and maintaining a website, but that is a flawed way of thinking.
Building an underperforming website yourself to save money not only wastes your time but also hurts your business. Hiring professionals to build a website for your business will help you avoid the following costly mistakes.
- Burying Contact Information
The most frustrating thing for a visitor is to have to fill out a form to get in touch with you instead of just being given your direct contact information. This can be especially annoying for those who are looking to get in touch with you instantly.
The whole point of a website is for customers to get in touch with you easily. So make all the contact information like your phone number, email address, office address, etc. readily accessible to your visitors on your website. Also make sure that the email address is a hyperlink.
- Failing to Focus on Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
One of the cardinal sins of web design process is building a website that cannot be easily indexed by search engines.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) ensures a website better placement on search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo. If you are building a website to generate more leads and customers, it’s important you show up in these search engines.
By using On-Page & Off-Page SEO techniques, your content can rank highly on search engine result pages (SERPs). The higher you appear on the SERPs, the more traffic you will get.
This is basically done by including keywords that best describe your service in post/page titles, meta descriptions, sub-headings, alt-tags, etc. Search engines will find your content through these keywords and show your website to the user looking for that information.
- Not Mobile Friendly
One of the worst mistakes you can commit while developing the website is not making it mobile-friendly.
Mobile traffic currently makes up 15% of global Internet traffic and this number is continually increasing as smartphones and tablets grow in popularity.
As per reports:
a. 48% of users feel frustrated and annoyed when they visit nonmobile-friendly sites.
b. 52% of users who have bad mobile experiences are less likely to reengage with the companies.
c. 48% say that when sites don’t work well on their smartphones, it makes them feel like the companies don’t care about their business.
It’s quite evident from these stats that if your website is not responsive across multiple devices, you’re going to miss out on a growing population of users.
Ensure your website looks well on all devices with all screen sizes. You can perform a simple test of your website’s mobile friendliness at Google’s GoMo site.
- Failing to Incorporate Social Media
If you want to cash in on the power of the Internet, social media simply has to be a part of your website. Tradies must integrate social media into their websites to drive transactions and make connections with their customers.
Social media is a great way of keeping the conversation going with customers after they have left your website. Promote your Facebook page, Twitter account and Pinterest board by having a social button for each of these social networks on your website. Give customers a way to interact with you and get information on what you’re up to via social media.
- Not Monitoring Traffic
A critical mistake often made by tradies is neglecting visitors to their own websites. You need to monitor traffic coming to your own website. This data will help you find out who is visiting your website, how they are finding you, whether they are converting into your customers, which pages they are visiting the most, and how long they are staying on each page.
By monitoring your visitors, find out how your website is performing and where you need to improve it. Make changes accordingly in each of your pages that are not generating enough responses.
- Complex Navigation
You have created highly relevant and informative content for your website. But if it’s harder for the visitors to find what they are looking for, it makes no point. Bad website navigation stops people from finding all the great content on your site. Worse, it may frustrate visitors and cause them to leave your website.
Ensure different sections/categories on your website are easily found by visitors. Having your navigation on top of the page makes it easier for users to find where they’re going. Consider using breadcrumb navigation. Breadcrumbs allow users to see where the current page is in relation to the website’s hierarchy.
Also make sure there is internal linking between your related content, so that visitors dive deeper and visit more pages in your website.
- Missing Contact Form
What if your customer wants to send you a detailed message or leave their contact details with you so that you can get back to them? Not providing a contact form on your website will make it impossible for them to do so.
Your website is where a prospective customer first comes into contact with your business. So, it’s vital you provide a Web contact form through which they can contact you easily to ask questions, leave their details and hopefully give you their business.
- No Regular Blog Posts
Another common mistake made by tradies is not blogging regularly on their website.
As per a HubSpot report, 92% of companies that blogged multiple times a day acquired a customer through their blog.
A corporate blog can be used as a powerful communication tool by a tradie to build brand awareness and nurture a sense of engagement. It’s a positive way of getting feedback from the customers and also for understanding their needs. It also allows you to display your expertise and showcase your skills and talent.
- Not Embedding Google Maps
Google Maps is the standard way for people to get directions online. Can you afford not to show a map to people on how to get to your premises?
Embedding Google Maps on your website will guide users to your physical location and also make them believe that you are a more viable business. Incorporating maps into your website will also help you rank well in the Google+ Local business listings rather than just in the website listings.
- Lack of Balance between Design and Content
A website may be visually appealing but if it’s not conveying the right message to your customers, it is not serving its intended purpose.
There should be a right balance of design and content on your website. The design should not be distracting and the content should deliver the right message to your customers.