Dear Mr. Communicator: People visit my website, but they don’t buy my service. What’s wrong with my site? – Frustrated entrepreneur
You provide a fundamental service in the business-to-business market, a service so important that even a few minutes of downtime could be disastrous. Your many competitors provide exactly the same service you provide; the only differentiation is your low price and your ability to gain the customer’s confidence.
I can understand that you wanted a clean, uncluttered website, but the result is a site that doesn’t establish your authority. There is not enough information to give the customer confidence that you can deliver your service.
Essential Website Content that will Establish Expertise
List your education credentials and summarize the jobs you held prior to becoming an entrepreneur, making these descriptions relevant to the service you offer. (If you are a broker for waste-hauling services, I wouldn’t mention that your college degree is in Dance.)
Write a couple of succinct sentences that offer a value proposition — what makes you more qualified to sell this service than your competitors?
Explain how long you’ve been in this business or a related field, how many customers you have (or have worked with over the years) and how you bring value to the client.
A complete list of your services — with descriptions — is obviously a critical element. Check and double-check the terminology, ensuring that potential customers will see that you are up-to-date.
Where possible, use brand names and other terms that your clients are likely to search for.
You don’t need to write a 10,000-word dissertation. Simply give us a few paragraphs that state your customer’s pain point and how you successfully addressed it.
Include at least three to five case studies, using client/company names (but be sure to get the client’s permission!).
If you have no customer experience yet, title this page “Use Cases,” and offer some hypothetical examples to show what kind of ROI (return on investment) your clients will experience.
Your ability to make new sales hugely depends on your past successes.
Slightly different from case studies, testimonials are merely a sentence says “Bill was able to cut our cleaning service costs by 50 percent in six months without sacrificing quality.”
If you’ve only been in this very specific business since yesterday, get testimonials that prove your value as a business partner: “Bill has always been there when we needed him and he understood every aspect of our operation.”
Honors, Awards and Recognition
If you are an electricity provider, it sure would be nice to show a photo of yourself accepting an energy conservation award from President Obama.
Additional Website Elements that Show Authority
- Glossary of terms in your field
- Frequently asked questions (and answers!)
- Cost-saving tips and advice
- How to select a provider (in other words, why you are the best provider)
- Photo gallery or portfolio of successful projects and client engagements
Creating Strong Web Pages
To attract search engines and provide solid information for new customers, your pages should have at least 300-500 words and include at least one relevant photo with a caption that includes keywords relevant to the service you offer.
I coach small business owners and entrepreneurs in thinking through how to best present themselves. Contact me for help in making your website a more effective sales tool.