6 Tips for Building a Great Small Business Website

Follow these tips to ensure you develop a great website that generates results like increased leads and sales.

Tip #1 - Know your audience, your customer.

Before you work on the mechanics of building a great website, it's important to know who you are speaking to. Who is your ideal customer? What's important to them and what do they care about? This is called a customer avatar and it really gets you clear on who you are selling to.

Here's a really good customer avatar example for an advertising agency and one of their client avatar examples:

“My avatar is 43 and college educated. She's married with two kids and doesn't have a lot of spare time. Between running her business and taking care of her kids, she has very little time. She's thought about advertising on Facebook for several months now, but she doesn't know where to start. She's runs a successful business generating about $300K per year and feels like Facebook can help her grow faster. She fears that if she doesn't find other ways to advertise her business, she could fall behind her ever increasing, local competition.

As you can see, that's quite a detailed customer avatar, but the insights in this profile can help you refine the messaging on your website to better convert visitors to an action like a phone call, a web form or a sale.

Tip #2 - Use a modern design & keep it simple.

Now that you've defined your customer avatar, it's time to get down to the mechanics and design of your website. Your website is the first impression you'll make to most potential customers. Using the info from step 1, you want to make sure you address your audience, but do so with simplified text, bullet points and short paragraphs. Think of it as making an introduction about your business and using a simple, modern design to convey the message. Fight the urge to add superfluous content to your website, stick to the messaging you develop in tip 1.

Tip #3 - Properly showcase your products and services.

I can't stress this enough, make sure you have high quality photos and images. Your business deserves the extra time and resources you'll have to commit to have high quality photos.

You can hire photographers for a small fee to come out and take professional photos of your store, your fleet or your business location. You can also purchase affordable and high quality stock photos on sites like iStock.com or DepositPhotos.com.

Tip #4 - Make sure your website is web responsive.

Ensuring your site displays well on any device is very important. More searches for products and services are happening on mobile devices than ever before. You want to create the best impression regardless of the device your potential customer is using.

Tip #5 - Make it easy for customers to contact you.

Sounds like a no-brainer, but it's one of the biggest issues we find on most websites. The lack of contact info or hard to find phone number is far too common. I suggest having full contact info, phone, email and address. A physical address is important for impression reasons alone. It shows your customer that you're a legitimate business, even if they'll never visit your address.

Tip #6 - Simple SEO tactics for any business owner.

SEO is highly specialized skill and at times may require a big investment of time or money to do right. However, there are some simple things you can do as a business owner to get the "low hanging fruit" benefits of simple simple SEO tactics. For us, that's making sure each page has proper HTML Title Tags. These are the title of a page you see on your web browser. A nicely formatted title tag looks like this (actual examples from Miami):

Gerson and Schwartz, PA - Miami Personal Injury Lawyer

As you can see, the name of the law firm is first, then there's the name of the town and an important keyword.

Another example:

Roto Rooter | Miami Emergency Plumbing Services

A tool we use for our clients is a title tag preview tool from Moz.com. Here is a link: https://moz.com/blog/new-title-tag-guidelines-preview-tool

In closing...

Keep in mind, there are many more important aspects of building a great website for your business, but if you only do these 6 tips, you'll already be ahead of most small business owners in terms of proper website structure.

If you'd like to hire a partner who can make sure all these steps and much more are covered for you, please reach out to us:

Shoot me an email at tem at buildyoursite dot com or check out our current small business web design promotion here ( http://web-design.buildyoursite.com )

Author image
Tem is the CEO of BuildYourSite.com, a web agency providing web & digital marketing solutions to small businesses. When he's not producing great results for clients, he's spending time with his boys.
Miami, FL Website