For many businesses, building a new website can be a daunting task that ends up being quickly slapped together just to have something online. Since your website is the core of your business in the online realm, it’s important to put time and effort into building it so you can showcase just how incredible your business is. One of the most common questions we get asked is, “How much will my site cost?” What is really being asked is, “How complex does my site need to be?”
Most businesses do not need a crazy website with a million pages. In fact, for most businesses, a simple website is more than enough and is actually preferred by visitors because it helps streamline their access to the information they’re looking for. But how much is enough? And what information does your website really need? Keep reading to learn how to best answer those questions for your business.
The homepage is one of the most important pieces of the puzzle and for many companies its value is overlooked. Oftentimes, people will scroll through your homepage from top to bottom before they ever click through to another page or, worst case scenario, click off your site all together without ever leaving the homepage. This is why your homepage needs to showcase the best that your business has to offer and it needs to act as both a guide and a funnel for your customers.
As you lay out your homepage, keep the following keys in mind to start building a relationship with visitors and effectively funnel them from a shopper into a high-paying customer.
All three of these are absolutely necessary because if you are missing one of the keys, you won’t be able to maximize your website conversions and you have the potential of losing customers right from the start. Remember, you won’t gain customers if they aren’t aware of the products or services your business offers. People won’t do business with you if they don’t trust you. And finally, they won’t buy from you if they don’t find value in what your business is offering.
Meet the team page
In today’s business world, people buy from companies they can relate to and companies they trust. By introducing your team to prospective customers, you are able to “put a face to the name” and show that real people run your company. A “Meet the Team” page is how you can add a personal touch and show off your company culture. This page is especially important for businesses that have a lot of human interaction with customers.
This is where you can showcase your business’ best work. For service-based companies, this is where you can show-off your most incredible completed projects and showcase anything that will really wow prospective customers. This page is all about building trust, so make sure its clean and positions your work as the absolute best option for what you sell.
For e-commerce companies, this is where you can share customer testimonials. Instead of just using text, create a portfolio page to show your products in use. If you’ve ever sponsored an athlete or been represented by a celebrity, this is where you can show them using your products to really drive the value home to your next customer. For example, if you’re selling sunglasses, use this page as a “lookbook” to show just how good people look in your sunglasses. It might be cliche, but what they say is true… A picture really is worth a thousand words.
Service/Shop overview page
Once a potential customer has enough trust to even consider buying from you, they will want to learn more about what your company sells. For service-based companies, this is where you can highlight each individual service your company offers. This page will help guide potential customers to the service they need while showing them everything you offer. As they browse your services looking for exactly what they need at that moment, they might see something else that catches their eye and plants the seed for an upsell or future purchase.
For e-commerce companies, this is your shop page that showcases collections and product lines your business offers. Even if you only have a few products, having a page that provides an overview of everything side-by-side is a great way to easily show shoppers the difference between products, allowing them the opportunity to browse and feel in control of their purchase decision. Plus, showing multiple products on your shop page can help with upsells or promote future purchase decisions.
Individual service/product page
Once a shopper clicks over to the exact product or service they are interested in, it’s important to provide enough information to answer any questions they might have. If you leave them with any uncertainty about your product or service, that can lead to a massive roadblock in their purchasing decision. For e-commerce stores, this roadblock will usually be the difference between someone completing their purchase through your website or going elsewhere to buy. Your product page needs to have as much information about the product as possible, including plenty of photos showing every angle of your product, how it works, additional items that come with it, and a few shots of the product in use.
For service-based businesses, sharing all the details about your service is important. Think of this page as the place where you get to brag about all the benefits and features of your service. On this page, you should answer any potential concerns shoppers might have and explain why your business is the best choice to meet their needs. The service page should also be used to illustrate what customers can expect when working with your business and outline the process for hiring your team to do the job. Do they need to schedule an appointment? Does your business offer a free consultation? Should they have someone from your team come out for a site inspection? Whatever it is, being clear and up-front with the next step to purchase your service is essential to promote the sale.
Pro tip: Use the individual product or service pages to show related products that would make for great upsells.
The purchasing page is a simple page on your e-commerce website, but it’s very powerful because this is where you upsell your customers and allow them to quickly finish their purchase. Once they’ve made the decision to buy, make it as easy as possible for them to complete their order. If your process for checkout is long, time-consuming, or confusing, prospective customers will have a much higher likelihood of changing their mind and not finishing their checkout.
For service-based companies, making it simple to schedule an appointment or get a quote will help shoppers increase their purchasing commitment. If the process to get a quote is long and convoluted, potential customers will simply go somewhere else to have their need fulfilled. Remember… make it easy to buy from your company!
Blogs are probably the most overlooked, underrated, and misunderstood portion of a business website. Traditionally, blogs are thought about as a page where random people write about everyday things like cooking or traveling. For a business website though, blogs can be used as incredibly powerful SEO magnets that can add more value and provide more information for both new and existing customers. Keep your blog updated regularly to continuously improve your website’s SEO ranking and keep your customers informed with all the latest news. Here are a few blog ideas to consider:
The contact page on your website is very important and is another element that a lot of companies overlook. Consumers are all about speed and ease, so your contact page needs to make communicating with your business as easy as possible. Have as many contact options as possible so that customers can contact your business in a way that is most comfortable for them. Keep your contact page simple, clear and easily accessible from any page on your website.
Now that you have a clear understanding of what each page can (and should) do, let’s put it all together with a final example.
If you run a company that offers four distinct services, then here is how your page breakdown might go:
This website framework comes out to 11 pages in total and will offer enough of a framework to boost SEO results, create successful sales conversions, and fulfill the three website keys: awareness, trust and value.
Websites shouldn’t be overly complicated, but they do need to be sophisticated enough to support and positively showcase your business. Although there are many other factors that can go into building your company’s website, such as system integrations, animations, portals, and more, use this list to build the basic structure and flow of your website, then grow from there.