Nowadays, the internet integrates into almost every aspect of our lives. We shop, search for services, seek information, and communicate with other people online. Whenever we need something, chances are, the first place we look for it will be the web. For this and other reasons, every business, including small local businesses, should consider creating a website. A good website can make a great first impression on visitors and inspire them to come back. It can improve your business’s visibility and eventually increase the number of potential customers. However, creating a professional and attractive website is not an easy job. There are many features for local business websites you should consider. From visually appealing design to overall functionality and usefulness, you can include numerous elements and solutions.
Essential features for local business websites
No matter the type, every local business can use websites as an effective marketing and commercial tool. You can sell products, advertise your services, connect with visitors, or promote your brand. With so many existing businesses out here, you can find as many different websites. They are mostly unique, some more appealing than others, but each of them represents something. If you want your website to help you stand out from your competitors and grow, you need to learn a thing or two about marketing. To help you with this, here are essential features for local business websites you should implement:
- Appropriate and functional design
- Clear and intuitive navigation
- Contact and other business information
- Service pages
- Call To Action
- Your local business website blog
Appropriate and functional design
You will have to think over what type of design you want for your business. If you sell pet accessories, the colorful and over-creative design will suffice. But, if you are into something else, like the moving business, for example, that might not be the proper layout. In that case, you should consider a more suitable design that is adjusted to moving businesses. Besides visual appeal, your website has to provide a degree of functionality. Again, for the moving industry, it is necessary to include several industry-specific elements:
- Online moving quotes
- A list of types of services
- Maps and a distance calculator
- Guides and instructions
- Other important information
Considering the above example, the same goes for every industry – providing the menu for your restaurant business, for example. Also, don’t forget to make your website responsive so it can adapt its layout on every device.
Clear and intuitive navigation
Generally speaking, your business website should be easy to navigate through. If visitors find it complicated and confusing, it can easily make them leave the website for good. No one enjoys a clumsy and inconvenient navigation menu that requires too much time to interpret. If you ensure they quickly find everything they need, you increase their engagement and a chance that they will come back.
This is especially important for commercial websites and blogs. A practical search bar feature, for example, will do wonders for searching products on a website. Even if you have only blogs, it can be tremendously helpful if you have an option to search for a specific topic.
On top of that, Google rewards websites that offer superb usability. Since their primary focus is on providing a quality user experience, paying attention to this part can help your ranking.
Contact and other business information
The basic business information is not exactly a feature. Every business website should have it, especially on the “Contact Us” pages. However, many business owners forget to include and present additional information in the proper manner. Besides your business name, logo, address, and physical location, you should include a map element, for example. Another helpful feature is the placement of social media buttons on your page. Finally, you should create the “About Us” page as well. It’s a perfect place to:
- explain your business goals;
- say something about you and your company;
- place a couple of images of your work or your team.
Showing your human element on your website can help you establish a relationship with your audience.
When creating a website for your local business, ensure you have a page for every service you offer. When visitors are looking for something, they always want to read more about the service they need before deciding to get in touch. Not only does it provide a better user experience, but it also has the potential to help you with your SEO efforts. With this in mind, each page you create gives you additional space to implement vital SEO elements. You can then include specific keywords in the content and use links to interconnect your website better. The same applies if you are selling products.
Depending on the magnitude of your products, you can create separate pages and provide more detailed information about each of your products. Just don’t forget that creating everything can be demanding. If you don’t have the time or means to do it, you can always find professionals to handle website development for you.
Call To Action
Depending on what you want your visitors to do, you can use CTA once they are on your pages. It can be a great way to motivate your visitors to take action. It will keep them engaged and also can lead to better conversion rates. For example, you can offer gifts or specific benefits if they subscribe. Or, you can advertise your customer loyalty program and various discounts for registered users. However, these “call to action” buttons should be clear, explanatory, and non-disrupting. So pay attention to when and where you use them to avoid annoying your visitors.
Your local business website blog
Creating a blog on your business website can be very helpful. It allows you to create quality content to keep your visitors engaged and informed. Basically, blog posts are suitable for discussing everything related to your industry, products, or services. But they are also great for making the most out of your SEO strategy. Make sure the content is fresh, informative, and optimized, not only for readers but search engines as well. In the long run, this can drive more traffic to your website and help you become one of the authorities in your industry—all in an effort to increase the conversion rates.
Fortunately or not, many business owners don’t invest a lot of effort into creating a quality website for their business. This allows you to improve your business by including crucial features for local business websites. In the creation process, make sure to understand each element so you can stand out from your competitors. And try to plan every little step that can prove beneficial for success.