How to Create Websites that Make the Phone Ring
December 8, 2007 - Posted by Shama Kabani
By: Shama Hyder
Yesterday, we established why it was necessary to leverage your website to attract clients. Today, let’s look at what makes a phone-ringing website.
1. Know your Website’s Objective and Measure Results- I would argue that if you are a professional services firm, your objective needs to be attaining more qualified clients. You can do this through your website by sharing valuable information and providing solutions. To create a website that attracts more clients, you have to constantly keep your objective in mind, and measure accordingly. Can you fill in this information?
We had ___x___ number of visitors last month, and ___x%___ signed up for more information. From that, ___x____ number of people became clients.
2. Create a Professional Design with Purpose- I met a client once who didn’t understand why no one contacted him through his website. He was even more upset because he had designed it himself. He was not a web designer. In fact, he had used Microsoft Word to "throw it together" (his words). Would you go to a client meeting wearing a home-spun suit? Of course not. Your website needs to reflect two things- 1) your company and your leadership, and 2) your client’s preferences. For example, if you are a management consultant trying to reach CEOs, you should stay away from a flashy or gaudy design. In contrast, if you are an interior decoration company that specializes in decorating children’s rooms, you may get away with such a website.
3) Keep Navigation Simple and Direct- Your prospects should be able to "flow" through your website. Each page should lead them to the next, finally leading to the contact page. This process should be simple, and should weed out people who may not be ideal clients. The purpose of your website is to attract and connect with your ideal clients. You aren’t trying to sell your services to everyone.
4) Share your Expertise- One of the greatest compliments I receive on behalf of After The Launch is that potential clients approach us after having sampled our work and knowing we can help. Using this blog as the homepage, we have been able to establish our expertise in the field of marketing. Don’t shy away from sharing your knowledge because you fear that giving away free information will keep people from hiring your company. Our company is proof that the exact opposite is true. People will appreciate your openness, and the value you provide will help establish your expertise.
5) Optimize your Site- Research what your clients are looking for online and provide them with that information. This is the fastest way to attract qualified leads to your website. Although you can write content-rich articles, I don’t suggest trying to optimize your website yourself. This is best left to professionals. Search Engine Optimization can take a lot of time and requires a deep understanding of specialized concepts. We have had many clients here at After The Launch that came to us after trying for months to optimize their website themselves. All of them have expressed regret at wasted time and money.
As a final note, I will add that creating the perfect website is a process. Don’t be afraid of trying new things or changing the website until you get it right. Just be sure to measure your efforts so you know how the changes are impacting your bottom line.