Local business owners have long thought that they don’t need to worry about their web presence. Their logic is, the local residents are already aware of them, and a site wouldn’t add anything to the experience. These assumptions are wrong. In a recent survey, BrightLocal asked respondents about local businesses. As it turns out, 36% of respondents said that having a clear and smart site gives a local business more credibility, and 32% of respondents said that they are more likely to contact a business if they have a site. Using this survey data, BrightLocal compiled a list of the top 10 elements consumers want from a local business site. Here are the essentials your site should have and why.
1. List of products
Even if it’s fast and easy to run to your local business and check out the product lines in person, consumers still want the accessibility a site offers. With one click, they want to be able to check and see if a business carries the product they need. By listing your products and services clearly, you can avoid wasted trips and frustrated consumers. While you’re listing your products, you’ll want to include a…
2. Price list
Giving consumers a price list that’s easily accessible has a couple of benefits associated with it. 1) It allows consumers to comparison shop without wasting time or gas. 2) It can help curb calls to your staff asking for price checks. The less time they spend on the phone, the more time they can spend on the sales floor.
3. Phone number
Although lots of customers love being able to reach the business via an email address (see below), they also expect to have a phone number listed on the site. Rather than confining it to a ‘Contact’ tab, you might want to include it as part of your footer, along with other essential elements of your contact info, like your…
4. Physical address
You might be local, but that doesn’t mean that everyone knows where you’re located. Save site visitors time and energy by providing them with your physical address upfront.
Not two businesses have the same hours, so don’t assume that even your most loyal customers will know yours off the top of their heads. Make sure you clearly state your weekday and weekend hours, along with any applicable seasonal or holiday hours. This would also be great information to include in the footer detailers, making it easily accessible on any page of your site.
6. Company info
Give your site visitors a little background on your company. If it’s a family business, tell them your story. If you’re a brand new startup, tell them that too. Giving them that kind of transparency will help to build the bond, and get them to walk in the door for that first time.
7. Contact email
Yes, you’ve already included your phone number, but you’ll also want to include a contact email. Email is the go-to method of getting in touch with a company, particularly one that the customer knows very little about. Providing that email information will make it easier for potential customers to get in touch with you. Just make sure you regularly check your email!
8. Map & directions
If you want to go the extra mile, provide your site visitors with a map to your business. This will make it easier for them to get directions and determine the best route to get to your business.
9. Attractive appearance
The more attractive your site is, the better. An outdated or ugly site can easily rub visitors the wrong way. Making it as attractive and easy to navigate as possible will definitely resonate with your visitors in a very positive way.
10. Company images
Images are great. They help to put a face, or a facade, to the name. Include images of you, your staff, your building, and, if applicable, your products. Your visitors will have a better idea of what to expect from you before they even walk in the door, and that will go a long way in establishing a relationship with them.