"Marketing Guide To Grow Your Business"
You have a new business and you need to create your first website for it. Or you have a business and you are re-launching your website. Either way, do you know what should be on your site? Listen to this podcast to learn about the essential pages that should be on your business website.
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The essentials that should be on all small business websites
Hello there! I’m Andrea Palten and the host of this podcast.
We are on episode 4. I promised you 10 episodes in 10 days. I’m having a blast doing it and I already got some super sweet reviews. Thank you!
Thank you to Pjsssz for this kind review. Pjssz wrote “Great Content! Learning a Lot. Andrea Palten offers a much-needed fresh, new voice to marketing your business today. Here experience shines through on a really down-to-earth way. Every time I listen to an episode, I feel like we’re just chatting in a living room over a coffee!” Pjssz, thanks for that review, I hope you are enjoying your coffee.
For the rest of you, if you are enjoying this brand new podcast, please be sure to leave me a review. When a podcast is new like this, it’s super hard to find for new listeners but good reviews make it a bit easier. I would so appreciate it. I read every single one of your reviews and am so thankful.
Ok, lets get started with episode number 4 which is all about your website.
So you have a new business and you need to create your first website for it. Or you have a business and you are re-launching your website. Either way, do you know what should be on your site?
In today’s podcast I’ll go over some of the elements that make websites customer friendly and most importantly makes customers take action on your website.
First of, you should have an easy to read website address. Also called a URL.
Your URL should be clear and simple. Don’t make things too complicated. For example, If you sell yellow pens, a good URL would be yellowpens.com. A bad URL would be Isellthebestyellowpensontheplanet.com. Short and sweet and to the point is the name of the game with URLs.
I do get asked a lot of it should be the service or product you provide or your name. For product websites, I recommend sticking with a URL that is closely tight to that product. For a service and if you are the service, your name is fine.
I went back and forth if I should use my name for my website address. I pronounce my name Andrea and lots of people don’t know how to spell that. As well as my last name, Palten, it’s not easy to spell. But when I launched my site, I was doing a lot. This was a couple of years ago.
I was promoting my speaking engagements, was starting to write a book, was doing career coaching, business coaching, and teaching marketing. So I considered myself a brand and wanted my name to be the URL. Truth be told, if I was starting out today, I would not have done that and I would have used MarketingGuide.com. That URL is taken now, so I’m sticking with my name, AndreaPalten.com
A lot of people have also asked me if they should use .biz or .co. I don’t think you should use these. I think you should stick with the .com domain or if you are a nonprofit use .org. Most people are familiar with .com and .org so stick with what most people know.
Another thing to avoid in URLs are dashes. So instead of andrea-palten.com I just did andreapalten.com as one long word. People forget dashes and aren’t used to using them in website addresses. Plus, dashes can create confusion with search engine optimization. Which just means that google will have a harder time finding you.
Lets chat about your homepage. Your homepage should look inviting and should let the visitor know immediately what your site is all about. People will take about 2 seconds to decide to leave a website or to continue to browse around in it.
Remember, people scan so put the right words up front in big lettering. If your description is a bit longer, then you can use bullet points to make it scannable for the reader.
And as far as design, simplicity and basic colors work best. Crazy rotating banners and flashing gifs or dancing cows on your site won’t work, they will just be distracting. Unless you are Chick-Fil-A, maybe a dancing cow on their website would be awesome!
An About Us page and a Contact Us page are two webpages that most websites have. Some websites combine these two.
The Contact Us is there to make it easy for a potential customer to get in touch with you. Website visitors have become accustomed and have been conditioned to look for the contact us link in the top left or right corner of the homepage.
Best practice is to have it in the main navigation so visitors can get to it from anywhere on the site.
And it’s nice to give your website visitor multiple ways to get in touch with you. Provide a form, give them an email address, post your phone number and whatever else you want.
For my business website I currently am not list a phone number, I was getting too many sales calls so I opted to take that off my website.
The About Us page is great for those people that want to learn more about you and do some investigation to see what your business is all about.
Don’t forget to add customer testimonials on your website. I have reviews in different sections on my website. I have some on the About Us page, I have some on the courses I sell, I have some on my pocast pages. It all depends on which review was for what.
When you do post customer reviews it would be awesome if you had a photo and full name and title of the person. Of course you need to ask permission for this and some people will just say no. I always like to lead with my reviews with photos and then the reviews without photos I put at the end.
Also, be sure to have a Services page or a “Lets Work Together” page so people can know exactly what products they can buy from you or what type of services you provide.
Make sure you have call-to-actions on your site. There’s nothing more important than your CTA. Your Call-To-Action.
It’s funny, you’d think that people know what to do when they get to your site, but often times they just don’t. Tell them! Literally tell them what you want them to do next.
You can say things like “download this freebie” or “learn more about me” or “lets work together” or whatever the right call-to-action is for your service or product.
There are also a lot of tech things you need to watch out for. Things like a secure hosting platform, search engine optimization and so much more. I’ll cover those in a future podcast episode. This episode is more about the essentials.
Ok, Lets recap the 5 essential pages that should be on your site:
Again, some of these pages can be combined, it all depends on your business.
But you want to keep the website main navigation pretty simple.
Up to 7 items is pretty good. I wouldn’t go higher than 7.
If you have things like FAQs or Press Inquiries or other navigational links that aren’t that important to your customer, you can put those in the footer.
On my websites I have 5 links in the main navigation. # 1 goes to my marketing business coaching, # 2 goes to my career coaching service, # 3 goes to my blog, # 4 goes to my about us page and # 5 goes to my Contact me page.
As most of you know, I currently have two podcasts. I do have links to my podcasts in the corresponding sections on the site. I have a main podcast link in my footer and then I have a marketing podcast link on my marketing services page and a career podcast link on my career coaching page.
Lets continue with the wrap up of this episode.
Other essentials you need to have on your website are a clear call-to-action so people know what to do, fresh content and a simple yet pleasing design.
Ok friends, that’s it for today. I would love it if you’d contact me on my site and show me your website when you are done. I always love to see what small businesses are doing.
Thanks for listening. Don’t forget to hit subscribe.
Talk to you later.