How to set up your website to generate leads

Written by Jade McAuley, Rebel Nation

If you think that having a website is something you “have to do” or it’s basically just an online brochure for your business, this blog probs isn’t for you.

If you think that a website is your online shopfront to bring in traffic, and convert them to customers – then please, let’s sit down and have a chat.

Obviously I cannot go into heaps of depth and detail on how to set up a website to generate leads in one blog (that’s more of a book-type thing) – but I can give you three really straightforward tips to get your head in the right space. If you’re creating a new site or upgrading your current one, this is where to start >

1. Think with the end user in mind

Your website is not for your business. It’s for your clients, prospects and so on to find out if your business is for them. Remember – they are their number one priority, not you. So it’s imperative that when you first start planning a site (choosing a platform, plotting out a site map etc) – that you do it from their perspective first, yours – second.

When you visit a website, what is the first thing that you want to know? It changes, right? Depending on what you’ve been searching, and which business you’re looking at, you’ll be looking for different things. If I’m looking for an electrician to fix my automatic roller door, I want to know if they fix roller doors, are in my area and how to contact them. It’s a one off thing, so as long as they don’t look too dodge, I’m cool with that. If I’m looking for a solicitor, I really just want to pick one to use forever so I’m going to want to know if they offer all the legal services I would probably want, and then I’d want to know that they know their stuff – qualifications, how long everyone’s been there, do they care about the community (or just themselves) – all that stuff that establishes credibility.

So when it comes to your business, what are the main things people ask you? If you’re talking to a potential new client – what do they ask? Whatever those questions are, that’s what you want to highlight on your home page and make it super easy to see and understand. Answer those questions straight up, and they might just stick around on your site – or get straight to contacting you.

2. Set yourself up for SEO

There is sooooo much you can do here (even just to DIY) but the first thing I really want to stick in your mind is to think about how people will find you. If you are the electrician, then chances are I am just doing a Google search for electricians – and will check their Google reviews, website etc. Whereas for the solicitor, due to the type of service they provide, I’m more likely to ask for recommendations from my main business peeps and then stalk those recommendations online before contacting the most promising one.

Now, that’s how I personally would go about it. Maybe you’d do the opposite – maybe you’d be asking for sparky recommendations and then just randomly searching for a solicitor. What I’m trying to get across is that people search in different ways, so when you first set your site up – when it’s just the basic main site – think about the phrases (also known as keywords) that people will type into Google to find you. It could be the service you offer, the service you offer plus your geographic location (eg electricians mackay), it could be your business name. Pick a handful of the main ones and then make sure to include those keywords/search terms in your website.

There’s a bunch you can do with keyword research, high value SEO spots, on and off page SEO and much more but to start off – wrap your head around what search terms your ideal customers will most likely use, and then include them in your site copy. When it comes to SEO, I think that’s the first step for someone just learning about it. Trust me, just because you’re not a digital marketer – it doesn’t mean you can’t have a good understanding of SEO. No matter where your skills are, we are all living in an increasingly digital world – and if you own a business, I think that having an understanding of SEO is just like knowing how to read a P&L.

3. Don’t make it a set and forget

This is probably not a startling realisation for you, but heaps of new stuff is getting uploaded to the internet every second of every day. No matter what good work you did at the start to set your site up – that’s not the end, if you want it to be truly useful. You need to be adding original, new, relevant, interesting content to your site on a regular basis – in line with the keywords that you want to show up for. You also need to be driving traffic back to your site whenever possible – hyperlinking your logo in your email sig, linking to interesting info through your social profiles, sticking it on your vehicle signage – wherever you are doing your marketing, your website should be the main port of call. Your website is the only place where you get to be alone with your audience – and where you 100% can control how they experience your business, so you really want to point them in that direction as often as you can.

Some people (like myself) find websites, content marketing, SEO strategy and so on incredibly interesting and thought-provoking (the possibilities!), but I can understand that for a lot of peeps – it’s probably as boring as bats---. There’s nothing wrong with just setting up a simple site that is basically just a digital business card – just don’t expect it to perform miracles for you. If you are interested in learning more, let me know what about. For example, do you want to know the main factors of SEO? Or would you rather learn how to use keywords on your site? Or are you more interested in finding out how to write a blog? Or maybe you just need some tips for driving traffic to your site? There’s a lot we could talk about, so shoot me an email if you have a particular interest and I’ll blog about it.