Let’s face it. It’s 2019. If your business doesn’t have a website, you’re missing out on some serious benefits.
Many local businesses rely heavily on word-of-mouth marketing and personal recommendations to promote their practices. While this form of advertising has advantages (like being free, for instance), it doesn’t replace the need for a well-maintained, professional website.
When someone learns about your practice over lunch with friends or a from a chatty coworker, they are likely to look up your business online before committing to an appointment with you. This may be to simply search for your contact information or they might browse online reviews about your practice.
A strong, branded online presence can help you gain new clients while providing resources to your existing clientele. Need a little more convincing before you start browsing for domain names? Read on to learn five ways a professional website is essential to marketing your local business.
5 Reasons Why Your Local Business Needs a Professional Website
1. Provide reliable business information.
How is a new client going to drive to your practice if they can’t find it? Unfortunately, very few people understand directions like, “head south for three miles then take a right at the big pine tree next to the new restaurant that used to be a bank”.
Your accurate NAP (name, address, and phone number) information is a critical element of your practice’s online presence. Firstly, it allows current and potential clients to access your information. Secondly, Google often enables users to call your office or navigate to your practice at the click of a button directly on the search page.
In addition to your NAP, a website provides you with an opportunity to tell the story of your practice and convince interested web users that they need your services or products. Between business listing sites and social media, there are many sources clients can go to for information about your practice. Take control of your business’s narrative by investing in a professional website.
2. Enhance your practice’s credibility.
Your practice’s website should be used as a space to show clients that you are a credible practice. However, just any old website won’t impress a generation of internet savvy consumers. An outdated website or poor user experience can result in a loss of potential clients.
A crawlable link structure and easily navigated site will help keep users on your site longer, giving you more time to convert that user into a client.
Small business websites can benefit from showcasing client testimonials on their home page. These reviews can have a huge impact on potential clients.
Original content on your website can also enhance your credibility to both clients and Google’s algorithm. Posting regular content to your website will help establish you as a knowledgeable source of information in your field. Backlinks to your website will also signal to Google that you are a reputable source of information, which can result in a higher search engine ranking. The higher your search engine ranking, the more visibility your practice has.
3. Increase traffic to your business.
Local business marketing enables you to drive more web traffic to your online presence and foot traffic to your office. Maybe word-of-mouth marketing has worked for you in the past, but you’ve noticed a lull in calls into your office. A professional website for your small business can make a huge difference.
Not everyone will come into contact with one of your loyal clients or pass by your office on their drive to work. Your practice’s website provides another avenue for potential clients to find your business.
As we stated above, a high search engine ranking increases your chances of being noticed by web users searching for local businesses like yours. A search engine optimized, mobile-responsive website tailored to your industry and location will help you earn a top spot on Google for related searches.
4. Create brand awareness.
A website is an extension of your brand. Do you have an awesome company logo or a particular aesthetic at your office? These features should also be present on your business’s website.
Consistent branding, from your office to your social channels to your website, helps create brand awareness in your community. Brand awareness describes the amount of familiarity a consumer has with your brand. For example, think of Target’s branding. When you see a red target icon or khaki pants, don’t you automatically think of this corporate giant?
You don’t need to be a multi-billion dollar company to exhibit great branding. Use the same logos, colors, and language across all of your content mediums and at your office. The more potential clients recognize your branding, the more credibility your practice will gain.
5. Stand out against the competition.
We know you’re the best in town, but you need to show potential clients that, too. A professional website provides you with multiple ways to prove to clients that your practice is better than the doctor’s down the street.
On your website, provide a brief but descriptive story of your practice. Tell web users why you founded your business and what your services can do to benefit them. Impress potential clients by mentioning any specialties, certifications, or unique qualifications you or your team have.
Professional images of you, your staff, and your office can also help set you apart from your competition. These photos allow potential clients to get to know you before they even walk into your office doors.
Get a Professional Website
So, you’re convinced you need a new website. That’s great! But you may be thinking, “where do I start?” Creating a well-organized, optimized professional website can be difficult for those without a tech background. And even then, you may not have time to manage a website while you tackle patient care.
Have no fear, iMatrix is here! Our team is available to answer any questions you have about establishing a website for your small to medium-sized business. GIve us a call to chat with us about your marketing goals today.