As a business owner, have you taken the time to consider the purpose of your website? We have recently upgraded ours and believe the purpose of your site will fall in two areas- confirmation and online lead generation.
I must preface, I’m not an expert in this area – I’m an accountant. However that does mean I’m not internet mad and may be able to give a balanced view. Having recently upgraded our website and viewing plenty of client websites, the question all business owners should ask themselves is…what is the purpose of a website for your business?
Website purpose is going to depend on your business and industry. I’d like to park e-commerce and large retail websites (which I have little experience with) or businesses with a strong focus on landing pages (which are single page, laser focused web pages built around a call to action) aside, and for a normal business website, I believe the purpose of your site will fall into two areas.
A potential client (or staff member) visits your website for confirmation. Perhaps they were referred to you, they met you at a networking event or found you via some form of “Marketing Gravity” (credit Alan Weiss). They directly searched for your website, viewed the content on your site (you, your team, your services, location, etc) and this provided the confirmation they were seeking and they make contact – you’d all agree, this would be a great result. This type of confirmation I’d suspect is one of the final steps a potential client / customer goes through before making contact.
Websites have evolved. 15 years ago ours was similar to a yellow pages ad – a static billboard of logo and services. Today, we have something that is modern and represents us, without having hundreds of testimonials, bland text and a never-ending list of services (which believe me, we have had in the past). Our hope is, the site provides the confirmation our potential clients are looking for and further, given the difficulty in staff recruitment the accounting profession is having, we hope it gives staff thinking of joining our team, the confirmation they may be seeking.
Online Lead Generation
My second purpose of a business website is online lead generation. Clearly, this may not be suitable for your business and the higher up the value chain your services are, the less relevant this may be.
Your website can be a tool to generate leads from people that have never heard of your business.
This can be done in a variety of ways and is not the purpose of this article to detail – however SEO, content rich and fresh articles / updates, detailed descriptions or video educating potential clients / customers, etc may be what drives people to your site. This is typically via long tail keyword searches that potential buyers search via the magic of Google, which may then land on a page within your website – the question they are seeking to answer is answered, they view your site and the client engagement process has begun. From this point, the potential client then goes into the confirmation phase – and hopefully makes contact.
In my view, your website should be only part of your story. I refer again to Alan Weiss’s “Marketing Gravity” (Google it!) and question, what is your marketing approach and how does your website fit in? What else are you doing to support your website and have potential buyers seeking confirmation about you and your business? Will your site provide the confirmation potential buyers are looking for? Well, an easy way to check is to measure the leads you receive through the website and seek professional assistance to improve where necessary.
If you are providing content rich articles, regularly, that are relevant to your areas of business focus, this will go a long way to your site performing well.
Article by Mark Rogerson
Managing Director, Rogerson Kenny Business Accountants