When you are running a business it’s tempting to accept any business which comes your way, especially when you first start up. But really you should be working to get more of the right sort of business from the right sort of client.
Your website can help you do that. Here's how ...
First, do your research.
Clearly identify who your ideal client is. What are they like? Where are they? What are their interests and values? What are their pain points? How can you meet their needs?
Make a list of brands that might appeal to your target audience: Sky Sports, Boden, Pinterest? Look at their websites to gather inspiration and identify trends. Consider the tone of voice of those brands, the style, the colours, the use of font and white space.
Now look at your competitors’ websites. How do they frame their messaging? Are there any lessons you can learn?
Put yourself in your client's shoes. How are they thinking about your product or service? Probably not the same way you do. You may be thinking about the features of your packages but your client is thinking about how your service will solve their problem and how they will benefit from it. Write a list of your client’s pains and interests.
Think about the search terms your client is likely to use. Don’t just think about what they will google when they are looking for your service but also what they will search for in general when trying to solve their professional problems. Compile a list of keywords.
Okay now you have done your research, here’s how to apply it to make your website appeal to your ideal client.
Target your messaging. Speak directly to your ideal client’s needs, interests, and pain points. Make your key message about your client, not about you.
Write your copy in an appropriate tone to appeal to your client.
Be authentic. Use professional and recent photos of yourself or your team so your client can see who they will be dealing with. If you are a sole trader, use “I” not “we”.
Pick colours and images likely to appeal to your client.
Choose a font which reflects your client’s taste and also makes you look professional. (No unusual, curly fonts here please.)
Clearly communicate the unique value proposition of your products or services and highlight how they can benefit your ideal client.
Highlight case studies from previous clients who are most like the type of client you most wish to attract.
Make sure you include your keywords.
Make your website easy and pleasant to use with a clear navigation structure.
Think about how your ideal client would prefer to communicate with you and make it easy for them to do so. If your client is likely to be looking at your website in the evening, give them a way to book an appointment or complete a form online. Don’t make them wait till the morning to phone you.
When your website resonates with your target audience, they are more likely to engage with your content, stay on your website longer, and get in touch with you.
The key takeaways:
Make your website focussed on your client, not you.
Make your website look like their sort of place.
You don’t need to spend a fortune or have a complex website but you do need to get the tone and messaging right. After all, you’re never going to attract a Selfridges' client with a pound shop website.