15 MUST HAVE items for your small business website

So you’ve got a growing small business, or maybe your business is going steady but you want to take it to the next level? Your clever you know that it’s essential for your businesses growth to have a website, but the question is what should I have in my website?

This is a question we hear everyday at Pixel Splash. Most business owners understand the importance of having a digital presence for their business but when it comes down to discussing what they should have in that website, many remain clueless. If your in that boat don’t worry, we can help you out.

Here are 15 essential things every small business website should have:

1) Simple, professional, easy to remember website address

Your website url is an important statement about your business and speaks to it’s credibility. For this reason keep it simple and avoid .net or other strange extensions. If your an Australian based business try and secure a .com.au domain, it will cost a bit more but will help boost your search ranking in Australia.

2) Don’t get cheep hosting! Professional paid hosting is worth it’s weight in gold.

Unfortunately this is where a lot of small businesses slip up. Avoid cheap website hosting like Go Daddy or Netgreg.  While they are cheaper these services will put your website on a server someone in Asia (they won’t even tell you the location) with another 10,000 sites. Basically your website will be slow and unreliable. You can get reliable, fast hosting for less than $15 a month.

3) “Responsive” Design

Make sure your site has a “mobile friendly” design. I can’t stress enough how important this is. With the bulk of traffic being garnered from mobile devices now, you need to make sure your website looks great on a mobile and is easy to navigate.

4) Fast load speeds

If your site is slow people will just leave it, it’s as simple as that. A good site should load between 2-3 seconds. If you have paid for professional hosting this shouldn’t be a problem.

5) Display your phone number

After your company name and what you do, the phone number is often the most-wanted piece of information. Include it at the top and bottom of every page on your site.

6) Hours of Business

If your business operates within certain hours be sure to add that information to your site. This information should be in the bottom section (the footer) of every page on your site.

7) Address

If you have a physical shop front be sure to list the address on your website.

8) A Map of Your Location

Like wise a map  makes it easier for people to find you. It gives people context and lets them see where you are located. An interactive  Google Map is your best option here.

9) Get a domain email address

Steer clear of mybusinessname@gmail.com, you will lose all credibility in a second if a potential client see’s this email address. Hopefully a free address (with lots of storage) will be included in your hosting package. If you already have a great looking website but still don’t have domain email address make sure you contact us here at Pixel splash and we can help you out.

10) A Products or Service Page

If your business offers services or sells products be sure to make those visible on your website. People are instantly skeptical of websites which hide service or product information so be as detailed as your can without information overload. Adding pictures of your products or services is also a great idea, people love pictures.

11) An “About Us” Page

Write about the people behind your business for a paragraph or two. Then add a few paragraphs about why you started the business. Remember: People want to do business with people they know, like and trust. So give them enough information to know, like and trust you.

12) A Contact Form

You want to have clear and open communication channels and give potential clients every opportunity to contact you. This is why a contact form is so good, it allows your clients to quickly get send you a message. With this said be sure to provide alternate contact information in the form of email address and phone numbers, some people prefer directly contacting a business through email or by calling.

13) A Call to Action

This is where you stop giving information and ask for their business. Your website needs one focused call to action, whether this is “Come visit our store,” or “Make a reservation,” or just “Call us.” Put your call to action either in the header area or in the navigation column. Make it stand out.

14) Title and Meta Tags Optimized for the Search Engines

If you can only do one thing to optimize your website for search traffic, write unique and enticing title tags and meta descriptions for each page. This will help your site get found in serach engines like Google. At the end of the day if no one can find your site it just becomes wasted space. Addming Meta Tags and SEO contact can be a little tricky so if in doubt get your website designer to do it. Here at Pixel Splash we have a lot of experience with SEO (Search Engine Optimization) so be sure to contact us if you have any questions.

15) Testimonials/Reviews

There’s a fatal flaw to marketing: People often don’t believe what we say about ourselves. But they do believe what other people say about us, even complete strangers. Even if you’ve got just one testimonial, put it up on your site. It will get you more business, and hopefully more testimonials.

Well that’s it, our Pixel Splash ’15 must have items items for every small business website’ guide. As always if you have any questions about this article or want to contact us directly concerning website development visit our contact us page or contact us directly via email at inf0@pixelsplash.com.au or call 03 5243 9817.