10 Essential items Your Website Should Have — part 1
Why do people choose BSG to handle their web needs? Simple. All the allegedly easy things that turn into dramatic nightmares are easily and professionally handled right here. However, we do not want to discourage those of you who want to try your hand at building a website. So, here is some basic advice, broken into two parts or five suggestions each.
As a freelancer, your website is an important tool in your marketing arsenal. There are many bad sites like the one pictured. It is crammed with all kinds of information but, is so chaotic, that it is undecipherable and you, like everyone else, clicks away rapidly.
It’s the first step in positioning yourself online with a solid, professional destination that gives customers the impression you mean business. If you set it up properly, you can generate lots of leads, convert them to paying clients and your freelance business can thrive. But, surprisingly, research shows that many small businesses are not maximizing the benefit of their websites. If you want to capitalize on your online presence, consider implementing these 10 essential elements to your website.
1. Own your domain
Many freelancers choose free hosting solutions such as WordPress.com (here’s why I don’t recommend that). That might be good for your bank account, but it’s bad for business. It shows the world that you don’t want to shell out a few bucks for your business’ official homepage. Clients won’t want to pay a freelancer who won’t pay for their own website. Spend $80, give or take, on hosting and get your own domain name, you’ll look more professional and that will help you look better to clients.
2. Easy-to-follow navigation
Your freelance website should be easy to navigate. Visitors should go to the website and see a menu of options. Their desired destination should always be a click away. At the minimum, you should have an “About” page, a “Blog” page, a “Services” page and a “Contact” page created and the links to them displayed in your top navigation menu.
3. Social proof
According to psychologists, humans have a tendency to gravitate toward people, places, and objects that closely resemble themselves. They refer to this as implicit egotism, and it’s why testimonials and other forms of social proof work so well. When you include testimonials and endorsements on your freelance website, people identify with them and sign up for your services. If you can add online reviews, you can drum up even more business. In a survey conducted by Dimensional Research, 90% of participants reported that positive reviews influenced their buying decisions. That’s a great reason to encourage people to leave reviews for your freelance services.
4. A face to a name
Avoid stock photos for your “About” page. Whether you are a one-man show or you have a team, you need to show who you are on this page, giving your business a face to a name. According to researchers, visitors typically ignore stock photos. If you use them, you miss an important opportunity to connect and build trust with your readership by putting a person behind the work.
Recommended by Forbes
5. Pricing information
While there is some controversy surrounding adding prices to websites, it is a good idea for freelancers to include prices for all services. Buyers want to know prices before moving forward, and if you don’t provide them, they might look elsewhere. If this idea makes you feel uncomfortable, go with at least a price range on your contact form, or you could end up with loads of unqualified leads.
Check here for the remaining 5 items!
To your success…