Who speaks for you, when you’re not there?
In a company, we’d like to think that person is the one most capable of spreading our philosophy, of enunciating our mission statement.
But the truth is, the person most likely to make that vital first contact with the public, the buyer or consumer upon whom you depend to pay your way in the world, is probably one of the lowest paid people within your organisation.
The receptionist on minimum wage, the front counter person counting down the minutes till they can escape your corporate existence, the junior sales person who over-promises and under-delivers.
As a business you need everyone to be on the same page to succeed. One voice, one vision, all eager to drive the company forward. To achieve this you give them the proper training, instill a sense of purpose, and hope that customers will see that yours is the type of company they will see fit to deal with.
Life on the internet is no different. Your website is your 24/7 front counter. Day and night potential customers are coming to it, asking questions of it. About you, about your company. About your suitability to do business with.
So here’s a quick checklist to run over your website. It’s by no means exhaustive, but it is a place to start.
- First and foremost, fill in a job description for your site. Be clear about its purpose – is it to generate leads and drive sales, build brand awareness, provide background knowledge…you can hardly blame an employee for not doing their job if you haven’t clearly defined it.
- Think about its dress sense. How does your site look when people come across it for the first time? Is it inviting and easy to get on with, or does it look too much like that try-hard person you try not to get stuck with at networking events?
- Make sure that each page on the site is communicating the company’s message with a common theme, easily recognisable as your brand. And that your contact details are plainly visible on every page!
- Make it easy to find! Keywords are still vital to search, and search is what people do most online. Relevance is more important than ranking.
- Make it an experience! Google is refining its search, looking for sites with ‘engagement’, so consider adding a video or social media button to your site. Why not a page that isn’t all about you, but allows the customer to express an opinion?
- which leads us to the hot topic – social media! Like it or loathe it, you can’t ignore it – social media is a driving force in marketing right now. If you’re going to get involved, understand that it’s for the long haul – nobody likes a fairweather friend.
Done right, your website will be the best investment your company makes. It will allow you to do more, and reach further, than you could ever do without it. It will engage visitors, inform them and encourage them to return.
And then who will speak for you?
Your customers will. Who could ask for more?