Your business needs a website

Our business is promoting websites, improving the visibility of businesses in the search results. I often get into discussions with the owners of smaller businesses or those who are sole proprietors about the need to have a website at all.

Let’s take the case of a tradesperson. Someone who does home improvements, HVAC repair or perhaps an electrician. It is often the case that these businesses exist solely on word of mouth advertising and just don’t see the need for a website. But let’s consider for a moment, that even if a prospect gets a referral, they will often get more than one and need some way to differentiate one provider from another.

Just having a website in many cases will set you apart from the crowd. Consider if you had an About page that described you, your years in business, and your approach to the work you do, the scope of the jobs you have had (residential, commercial), perhaps you worked on a job that locals could easily recognize and identify with, like a prominent house, church, hotel, or manufacturing plant. Would you be more likely to get the job?

What if you also had a Services page that described all of the different types of services you provide. Could the initial referral turn into a much larger project?

What if you had a Contact page that listed your place of business, your phone number and that you were licensed and insured. So people know you’re local, and not a fly-by-night operation. What if you displayed photo’s of your business (no building? how about trucks and employees) and listed the trade associations you are a member of or things like a BBB or Angie’s list rating.  Would that help?

Now contrast the view of your prospect selecting a tradesperson with this basic information versus hiring someone blind. Who would you hire?

So what is the Job of an SEO person?

SEO is first and foremost a marketing activity. However, because it is web-based, there are a number of technical aspects inherent to the job. An SEO person must posses HTML expertise (webpage language), PHP skill (a common programming language used on websites), and have a good understanding of DNS (how the web finds your website).

So just how far do the responsibilities of an SEO person extend?

This is industry expert Rand Fishkin’s take on this topic:

Where I try to draw the line between SEO and general support is to ask the question “does the activity doesn’t have a direct impact on the marketing of the website”. Sure I can edit copy and change a phone number, I can add an email account and change passwords, and even backup your website, but those are not really “marketing” tasks and are probably better and more economically accomplished by an IT person or Webmaster who does those tasks on a daily basis.

For customers who don’t have an IT person, I can help connect you with someone locally who does these things on a routine basis and act as a bridge when “who does what ” is unclear.