We will assume that you already know that having a website or a blog (which can also function as a website) is a requirement in today’s business environment. I won’t spend time trying to convince you of that. Suffice it to say that you need one and if you don’t have one nobody will treat you like a serious business.
Without a website at best you will be considered a skilled craftsman, not a business person, at worst you will be considered a fly-by-night.
“So should I do a website or Blog?” and what’s the difference between the two?
First let’s start with what the basic difference is between a website and a blog.
The basic difference between a blog and a website is that on a website your main page remains static (it is constantly changing in case of a blog) and other pages contain mostly static information. On blogs — at least on most blogs — you can leave comments and interact with visitors. Most of the time this does not happen as much on a website. However, even on a website you can have online forums and discussion threads.
So what does this mean to most home improvement contractors and construction businesses?
The main thing you have to decide is – Are you going to have time to keep a blog updated?
For most the answer is NO!
You are too busy running your business to always be making updates and responding to visitors posts. Sure, it would be nice to always have fresh content on your site – but you’re in the construction business not the internet marketing business – LET’S KEEP IT SIMPLE. Stick with a website and update content as you have free time.
So what do you hope to gain by having a website?
- Credibility. A website says to the world – we are in business. It changes your position in the customers’ eyes from a guy working out of the back of his truck to a local company with a professional image.
- A venue to explain your services and what sets you apart. It’s hard to tell a prospective customer everything about your business, the services it can provide and show pictures in a print advertisement. You are limited by space and cost. A website allows you to do this. A one page website costs the same as a five page or a ten page. So tell them your story and show them what you can do.
- Leads. A website should generate lead inquires. If it’s not – you either don’t have any traffic or your website is not effective. We will show you how to get traffic to it and convert them to lead inquires.
So how do I do it?
OK, here it is. If you don’t have a website already OR you have a website but aren’t getting any leads off of it here’s what you need to do.
Step-By-Step to building your own website:
- Choose a domain name – the name of your site. (Example: DetroitRoofer.com or DetroitRoofingPro.com.) See if it’s available at Godaddy.com (Hint: having your city and trade in the domain name are a big benefit when it comes to SEO)
- Hosting: You need someone to “host” your website. A host is a company that owns the servers or computers that contain the contents of your website and keep it showing all of the time when someone is looking for it. There are a number of places that provide hosting. The cost will vary but plan on spending around $100 year.
- Produce Content: You need to write some basic content for your site. Tell people who you are, where you are, what you do and how they can reach you. Also include pictures of your work. Pictures of you and your crew – looking professional in front of a company truck are very affective.
- Important – you need certain things included to help produce leads – this is called creating conversions. A conversion is someone who starts out visiting your site and then decides to contact you about having you provide them a service.
- Again we want to keep this simple. Three things that are “must haves” for a contractor website are:
- A professional looking picture of you and your crew, if you have a crew. People want to know who they are inviting into their house.
- A quality description of the service you provide. Pictures of the services – before and after are helpful as well.
- Every website should have a form for them to fill out and a phone number for them to call – different customers have different preferences.
- A “Call to Action” Ask them to call now or to fill out a form for a free estimate.
- Publish: Depending on where you are doing your hosting you need to upload the content or copy and paste it for publishing. Every hosting company will have different details on how to do this – they will provide instruction when you sign up for the hosting account.
We hope was helpful. Online marketing changes constantly. If you are looking for more construction leads click here.