A professional website has become the storefront of modern business, and it is the most valuable asset in your marketing portfolio.
Given the amount of consumers who are now doing business online, your professional services website can be the single most productive source of leads for your organization.
When built properly and designed well, your website will broaden the scope of your marketing reach, and increase your overall return on investment. In order to grow your business, and increase revenue, we recommend monitoring and continuously improving your site.
How do you make the value of professional services tangible for clients? Learn more on our blog: How to Make the Value of Professional Services Tangible
Getting your professional services website into great shape is crucial to effectively marketing your business online. We’ve put together a few tips and starting points to help you get your website working at it’s best for you.
1. Create an Impeccable Homepage
This is your one and only chance to make a first impression, and customers aren't known for being too forgiving in the high-speed, virtual world. If your homepage is not intuitive and useful, people will simply click on.
You may have a lot to say, but a busy website is not the most effective way to do it.
Less, in this case, really is more.
Contrary to what you might think, negative space can be inviting, so a clean design can go a long way to helping potential customers linger longer - instead of increasing your bounce rate.
Before going live, encourage a round of user testing to work out any kinks, or find any bugs or broken links on the homepage. Most consumers consider broken links and irrelevant media unprofessional (not to mention irritating!), and are likely to go elsewhere.
Make sure your site is responsive all all sizes and types of screens, too. Your ideal customer may only see your landing page from their phone, so make sure it displays well, and is simple to navigate.
2. Enhance Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
In order to be found by your potentials, your website should be on the first page of relevant search results, so you have to play nice with the search engines. That means optimizing your website for search engine crawling and indexing.
SEO is generally divided into these two categories:
- On-page SEO incorporates elements like relevant and engaging content, keyword usage, page titles, and hyperlinks. Everything that the user can see and interact with on your site involves on-page SEO.
- Choose a focus keyword for every page of your site. Make sure that keyword shows up in the URL, meta description, title, and content.
- Include both internal and external links on most pages.
- Enter keyword-rich text into the alt text fields of photos.
- Off-page SEO is a little more nuanced, and involves getting backlinks to your site from other websites, which will improve your rankings. Creating engaging content that others want to link to is the key to off-page optimization.
- Content is everything. Focus on creating helpful, interesting content that your readers will want to share!
- Always write for your readers, not search engines. Your readers will love your content, and you’ll discover that your search rankings are better, too.
- Optimize your site for social media with images and meta descriptions that draw attention. Adding social media share buttons can be a valuable way to drive social media interaction.
Approximately 91% of US internet users search every month for information online. People are searching for you; SEO will help them find your website.
3. Measure Your Success
In order to measure the success of your professional services website is, you’ll want to quantify its popularity. Google Analytics is a useful tool for analyzing the activity on your site, and is an effective means of identifying areas that need improvement.
There is no point to SEO if you’re not monitoring the ebb and flow of traffic on your site.
Google Analytics is a free, powerful web metrics tool with reporting features that are intuitive and graphic. We recommend always using an analytical tool in conjunction with SEO practices, so you can identify what’s working and what isn’t.
Learn more about how to optimize your content marketing with data on our blog: 3 Ways to Optimize Your Content Marketing with Data
4. Calls to Action
Informing readers of your services and educating them on your industry is important, but usually not enough to get them into the sales funnel. Your website exists to encourage interested parties to contact you, so you have to make it as easy as possible.
Once you’ve enthralled your readers in content, use a Call-To-Action (CTA) anywhere you feel it is relevant on the page. Your CTA gives readers a logical next step – often, that means giving contact info in exchange for an offer of some kind.
There are many different types of CTAs; you should choose one based on what you want to accomplish. Prospects can be called to "sign up here," or "download now," and, upon clicking, will generally be presented a landing page with your offer.
How do you design an effective call-to-action? Learn best practices on our blog: How to Design a Call-To-Action (CTA)
Calls to action work well for professional services where people are actively seeking more information about the process. When a user enters their information, they are officially establishing themselves in your sales pipeline.
5. Become a Thought Leader
Most business owners with professional services sites are not creating their own content. Providing continuous unique, and well-researched content is a job in and of itself. That does not mean, however, that you cannot become a thought leader in your industry.
Taking the time to do a little research, and writing a set of white papers or a short e-book, can provide astronomical results. You can also use this as an opportunity to add value to your services, by educating people about the business in general.
Once consumers trust you are an expert in your field, they are much more likely to choose you over your competitors.
Professional Services Website Design Inspiration
Whether you’ve chosen WordPress or a custom content management system CMS, improving your professional services website is a continuous process which should never be overlooked. A great website is an indispensable marketing asset, and one of your best tools for generating quality leads.
Does your professional services organization have a high-functioning website? What are the lessons you’ve learned for how to continuously improve your conversion rates? We’d love to hear from you!