It has been almost one month since we were in Orlando for the Water Quality Assn. Convention & Exposition, and we keep thinking...
Here I go again…more than once, I’ve talked about the importance of dealers having company websites. Having a website allows small businesses to make a positive impression on their customers even before they pick up the phone to call. Many water dealers know the value of a website but there are plenty who still haven’t gotten around to it. Even if you are a one-man show and you think, “My phone keeps ringing so why bother?” I still recommend you dedicate time to setting up an official company website.
I come across many industry websites on a daily basis, so I decided to make a list of some Do’s and Don’ts to help encourage you to promote your company online.
Let’s start with the Don’ts.
Probably the most important of all: Don’t be intimidated. It is much easier than you think and the benefits of a website far outweigh the time you will put into it.
Secondly, don’t make your website too complicated. Flashy movies, special effects and sounds are not necessary. They only increase the time it takes to load the page and add significant costs.
Don’t worry about having multiple pages. For small businesses, keeping it simple allows customers to find what they’re looking for immediately. You want your site to be user-friendly and easy to surf through.
Don’t add multiple links and fill your site with irrelevant information. Links are beneficial, but they also can divert traffic away from your site.
Now here are some Do’s:
Do always aim for a clean and professional look. Remember, your website is the very first impression you give of your business. You don’t want it to look like a salesman with a rumpled suit.
Do be sure to list your contact information, such as phone, address, email, etc. on your Home page, or create a “Contact Us” page.
Do determine your website’s main purpose beforehand. This will help keep its navigation simple and make it easy to use. This is especially important if you intend to sell products and services directly from your site.
Finally, do consider purchasing pre-designed HTML templates. This will help you launch your site sooner and will prevent your site from having an amateur look. There are various sources available online that are affordable and easy to use.
With an increasing number of customers going online to look for water dealer services, having a website can improve your customer service by providing detailed information about your products 24/7.
Just think: Potential customers may already be searching for your website and not having one gives the impression that your company is behind the times—or worse, that it’s not a credible company.
On a separate note, I would like to point out that Water Quality Products practices what it preaches. In addition to offering daily industry news at www.wqpmag.com, we recently launched two new eNewsletters: Dealer of the Month and Business Exchange. Each month, Dealer of the Month profiles a water treatment dealer who has excelled in his or her area. The eNewsletter offers insight into the creative sales, marketing and business programs dealers use to grow long and successful business relationships with their customers.
The bimonthly Business Exchange eNewsletter is designed to educate dealers on how to utilize successful sales and marketing programs to promote their company’s image and help their businesses grow, and will feature a sales or marketing-focused article that will focus on different closing techniques, lead generation tips and marketing programs.