In many ways, the internet has become the new frontier for promoting businesses. Most online statistics peg the number of worldwide internet users at over 4.5 billion. Not to mention the sudden surge of online activity brought on by the global pandemic. This article will help you make the most of this development by building a lead-generating website for your business.
In the UK, 91 per cent of adults are internet users. This number goes even higher when you look at the people aged 16 to 44, where almost all of them (99 per cent) use the internet. These are the people most likely to access the web for purchasing goods and services or making purchasing decisions.
Needless to say, there’s an impetus for businesses to get their name and wares online.
Needless to say, there’s an impetus for businesses to get their name and wares online. A website is one of the best ways to do this. But just setting up a domain is hardly a good strategy. There are a lot of factors that come into play here, especially when the ultimate goal for the website is to generate leads. More leads eventually equal more conversions.
If you own or manage a business, this guide will help you set up a website that generates a steady stream of leads.
Setting up your website
For those who already have a working (but underperforming) website, you can skip this entire section.
Setting up a website for your business, or for anything really, has become incredibly simpler in recent years. Thanks in part to the many website builders that are easy to use. These give anyone who has even the most basic understanding of modern user interfaces the ability to successfully create a functioning website for a fee.
Here are the simplified steps in setting up a website.
1. Come up with a domain name.
For most businesses that are already established offline, the domain name is a no-brainer. It’s almost always going to be the name of their business. But there are times when the ideal domain name isn’t going to be available, likely because someone somewhere has already registered it.
This can easily be checked by either typing it into the URL box of your web browser or using websites like Name.com. The latter option also provides you with other pieces of information like whether the domain is expiring or deleting.
You can also customise your domain name by changing the top-level domain or TLD. This is the suffix attached to the domain name. Although .com has been the de facto TLD for most websites (it’s .co.uk for most websites in the UK), there are still other options available to you like .biz, .io, .co, or a whole host of other less conventional domain extensions. These can help you distinguish your website.
2. Decide on a web host.
Websites need somewhere online to store its data and files like graphics, videos, and others. These online hosts will make sure these important files are always accessible for your website users. Choosing who will host your data is an important decision to make.
You have two main options. You can either host your own website or choose an external host. Hosting your own website requires expertise and equipment involving costs that will significantly bump up your budget for this project.
Another option is to choose a more established web hosting service. Most professional website builders usually include web hosting in their packages.
According to Forbes, the speed and reliability a web host can provide is an essential quality you should look for here. It’s vital that your website stays online at all times and this is the job of your web host.
Apart from staying online, users should be able to quickly navigate your pages and this requires speed from your host. A shared web host is less expensive but may cause slow speeds compared to the more expensive but generally quicker, dedicated hosting.
Security is another consideration here. Good web hosts will be able to protect your data from cyber threats. Other factors like customer service and ecommerce or email options may be secondary but are important nonetheless.
There are a couple more steps to take leading up to the moment your website goes live. Upload all your website files using your chosen method. Most web hosting services have options laid out for you. In some cases, an additional directory will automatically be created once you upload your website files. This may cause your future visitors to be routed to a different landing page. To avoid this, move the files to the main directory.
Once all the files are uploaded, you can run a final test run before actually going live. If everything looks good, you can publish.
Business News Daily offers a more comprehensive guide to setting up a website. It lays out each step in more detail.
Once you have that down, this article will now delve into how you can get more visitors.
Optimising your website
Now, just because you have a working website, it doesn’t automatically guarantee a steady stream of visits. In fact, the real work starts here.
Just because you have a working website doesn’t automatically guarantee a steady stream of visits. In fact, your real work starts here.
Search engine optimisation or SEO is one of, if not the best, ways to establish and maintain online presence. The best thing about modern SEO is that, unlike the SEO strategies of old, search engines now place a higher premium on the value that webpages offer the users.
Today, satisfying users with optimisation is your biggest ticket to the top of the search results.
Here are effective ways to optimise your website.
Maximise your website design.
Apart from being an online representation of your brand, website design also plays some vital roles in optimisation. Choosing high contrast typefaces and backgrounds is an example of using it to improve readability for the user.
Anything from your choice of colour to how big buttons are will have an effect to how your users will experience your website.
When looking at custom website design for optimisation, it’s also important to consider the devices that your visitors will be using.
Not everyone will be on their computers. In fact, Finder reported that 79 per cent of adults in the UK use their mobile device to go online and spend an average of two hours and 34 minutes just surfing.
Improve the user experience.
User experience is a top consideration for search engines when evaluating websites. The better your website performs and engages its visitors, the better its placement is going to be in the searches.
A big factor in user experience is the speed of your website. Pages that take ages to load are unacceptable. This has a lot to do with web hosting, yes, but it can also be improved in the development side.
In the design category, making your website structure and features more intuitive will also improve user experience.
Features like chat bots and shopping carts are good, too, as long as they perform well.
Mind your content.
Engaging content will go a long way in retaining the attention of your visitors. Search engines see just how much time people spend on your pages. Good content is also guaranteed to encourage users to keep coming back and recommend your website to friends and family.
The right content will establish your business as an authority in your industry as well. Well-researched copies and even blogs make you sound like an expert in your given subject, and your products will also look more attractive because of it.
Search engines also look at how often your website is updated. Having a regularly updated blog is one of the most effective ways to show how active your website is.
There are other factors that affect search engine optimisation including coding, link building, and others, but it will require a deeper understanding of the topic and is better left for trained hands to handle.
Our team is always ready to help out with a range of SEO packages in the UK or just to answer your questions.
Marketing your website
Optimisation is a big part of generating leads, but there are other things you can do to give your website a boost in clicks.
Consider PPC or paid ads.
Have you ever clicked on the ads that pop up at the top of the page when you Google something? Of course you have. That’s because paid ads are effective, or more accurately, they’re effective in getting an influx of clicks in the short-term.
For a new website, that can be the catalyst it needs to get things going. A sudden influx of clicks will get your pages out there in a big way. This is also why it’s important to use this strategy in combination with SEO.
PPC ads are also cost-effective since you only pay for the traffic your website gets from them.
Leverage social media.
Social media is another tool in the online marketer’s arsenal. With little to no cost, you can advertise your business. Use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. to promote your newly minted website.
Social media is another tool in the online marketer’s arsenal.
Today, people expect businesses to have some sort of presence on social media. This encourages them to interact with you since the platform is more familiar to them. That doesn’t mean you can’t refer them to your website, especially if it has ecommerce features where they can directly make purchases.
You can also integrate your website into your other marketing strategies, even if they are offline.
A business website should always be aimed at getting more leads and raising conversion rates. You can launch a combination of online marketing strategies to make sure your website is visible to prospects. Once they land on your page, you should offer them a positive browsing experience that leads them to engage, submit an enquiry or better, make a purchase.
If you have more questions on how to leverage digital marketing, feel free to contact our team. You can also explore our SEO services in the UK proven to generate results.