Is Your Website Content Working?
You are the face of your business. You represent it to everyone you meet: customers, employees, suppliers, investors… everyone with a stake in your business from your personal banker to the person who waters the plants twice a month.
But what about those important people you haven’t yet met: your prospects? Your potential ideal customers, upon whom the future of your business depends?
Who (or what) represents you to them?
More than anything else – more than casual word-of-mouth from customers and employees, more than that single-line listing in the phone book, even more than your mom – your chief representative to your future customers is your website.
And, more precisely, your prospects will assess your business more by the words you’ve given them to read on your website than by any other measure.
How confident are you in your web content?
Will it make your business look as awesome as it is, in the right way to influence your prospects, every single time it’s read?
Is it working?
Are You Really In Business?
First, it needs to be said that if your business doesn’t even have a website, you’re losing money every day you delay launching one.
A business’ website is the modern-day equivalent of what the listing in the phonebook or the printed letterhead was fifty years ago.
In 1967, if your number was in the local phone book (particularly in the yellow portion), if you had printed letterhead, and if you had a business card to pass around (maybe even a brochure!), well, you were a legitimate business owner.
If you didn’t, you weren’t.
That’s the cold reality of how your 1967 prospects would’ve judged your entrepreneurial efforts.
Your business would’ve been practically invisible to everyone, prospects and investors alike.
Today, the signal you send to the world that you’re open for business is a website.
I know you’re busy… all “busy-ness” owners are.
But if your business doesn’t have a website to represent it, 24 hours a day, every day of the year, I think I could safely predict that what you’re busy with is not just the revenue-producing work you got into business to do.
So, before you do anything else, put down the watering can, talk your mom into taking care of the plants for a couple days, and get a website for your business.
You’re not really in business these days unless you have one.
And if you don’t get one, you’ll really be out of business... sooner, rather than later.
Beyond The Techie Stuff
Once you launch your site, you’ll find there are at least seven different technical aspects that need to be addressed to make your site successful.
Web Development. Is the site architecture sound, so that everything flows logically and works as intended?
Web Programming. Is the hidden code that runs every website running yours properly?
Web Design. Is your site visually appealing, with a consistent and attractive overall “brand?”
Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Does your site have the right amount of the proper keywords that help customers find you, and are those keywords in the right places?
Search Engine Marketing (SEM). Are your keywords and paid ads working to drive traffic (prospects) back to your site? (Note: SEO and SEM are critically important, and each has both a technical component and a content component. Too many business sites fail because the owner paid attention to one component, but not the other.)
Content Management System (CMS). Does your site include a properly-formatted and functional database that allows you (or your writer) to easily keep the content fresh, helpful, and attractive?
Usability. Is your site technically easy for prospects to use, and aesthetically-pleasing enough to get them to want to spend time there?
These days, a web designer or developer worth his/her salt will know how to take good care of your site in all of these areas.
At least, technically.
But web developers are not typically writers. And very rarely are they trained, skilled writers who know how to produce persuasive copy.
You have to go beyond the tech stuff – important as it is – to have a website that performs brilliantly.
As you know, business is competitive. It’s like a cage fight out there! Your competitors certainly have websites, and most will have beautiful sites that check all the technical boxes.
So how do you stand out from the crowd?
Every business depends on them.
Whoever Has The Best Words Wins
You stand out in a crowded marketplace by leveraging the power of great, professionally-crafted, persuasive words.
Your web content is your best weapon in the fight. It’s what you use to attract and retain the best employees, let alone find and delight your ideal customers.
Your words will differentiate you from your competitors.
Either in a good way, or in a bad way!
Remember, Brand X is always out there, trying to hire the best employees away from you, and trying to grab your ideal customers before they can find their way to you.
It’s a battle, all right. And whoever has the best words is going to win.
You Know It’s So
To prove to yourself the importance of web content in winning your business battles, imagine this:
You’re a guy looking for a haircut in a new town. There are four barbershops nearby… but when you whip out your smart phone and do a search for “nearby barbers,” you only find three (because one has no web presence at all).
You take a quick look at the three sites.
One has very little content at all. Another has plenty of content, but it ain’t great: it’s riddled with errors and inconsistencies that definitely make it stand out (but not in a good way). And one has awesome content, complete with rave reviews and interesting articles.
Who’s cutting your hair?
Even if they charge a little more?
And take the scenario a bit further: Imagine you’re a great, highly-skilled barber who just moved to this town, and that all four shops need help.
Where will you start your job search?
Even if they pay a little less?
It’s a fact. People want to do business with (and work for) outstanding businesses. Businesses that care about the little important things their competitors overlook.
Great web content, for instance.
Businesses represented by fabulous words tend to catch fire and stay smokin’ hot when others burn out.
Ignite Your Business With Winning Words
So how do you ensure your business’ site has all these fabulous words?
A great start is to commission a website content analysis by a professional writer who’s trained to supplement your web designer’s good technical work with persuasive content.
This comprehensive report will look at five key aspects of your website’s content (among many other things) to determine whether you’re ready for ignition.
Customer Focus. Does your site’s content likely resonate with its visitors? Are you presenting solution-oriented messages that speak directly to your ideal customers in a voice they can relate to?
Competitive Strategy. Are your SEO keywords helping you stand out from the crowd… in a good way?
Clarity. Are you offering helpful (and scannable) information, clean and free of the kind of boo-boos that torpedo so many sites?
Conversion-optimization. Does your site guide visitors with offers that compel them to action, moving them along in the journey from strangers to prospects to customers to ambassadors/fans of your business?
Consistency. Are all your site’s pages connected with a positive, constant brand and voice, and do the messages reliably appeal to the ideal prospects who’re out there looking for you, right now?
This is a battle you can win.
Get a content professional on your team, and invest a little of your marketing budget on words that have the power to ignite your business.
Let your main competitor be the one who’s relying on luck.
Let him be the one who’s merely open and hopin.’
You? You’re going to set your bottom line on FIRE.
Burnin’ and earnin!’