Your website is one of your business’ most important assets. It is your online brochure, your presentation, and your biggest marketing tool all wrapped into one.
As members of NAPO, we are encouraged to create professional, well-written websites. However, knowing just what should be included in that website can certainly be a challenge. It’s important for professional organizers to better understand the key elements necessary for a successful, traffic-generating business website.
Basic Elements of a Successful Website
As a rule of thumb, websites should contain all the basic information: who, what, where, when, why, and how. Who you are, what you do, where you do business, what your hours are, why a prospect should chose you, and how you can be contacted. After you create your website, do a thorough review to ensure that all of these basic questions have been answered.
Organize your website into sections (i.e. pages) that are easy to find and easy to understand. Even the most basic website should contain the following:
- Home Page
- About Us
This is typically your first chance to make a good impression — unless your website also uses a Landing Page. Help visitors get to know you and get them excited about what you have to offer. Display your business name and include links to other pages of your website. Include promotions for gift certificates or other interesting offers, and include a link to an order form. If you offer a free initial consultation, promote it here. Also, display logos of professional organizations that you are affiliated with.
People want to do business with someone that they feel like they know, so introduce viewers to you, your team, and your organization. Tell your story, why you went into business, and what geographic area you service. Let visitors know how you give back to your community. This is also your place to brag — highlight any awards, special certifications, or honors that you’ve received or earned.
List your services, along with a brief description of each and include links to other pages on your site where visitors could get additional information. Many organizers also create separate sub-pages for each of their individual services, with links from the primary Services page. Sub-page categories might include: business organizing, home organizing, downsizing, moving, estate sales, etc. Elaborate on what you do and how your services benefit clients.
Be sure to include all of your contact information: your name, telephone number(s), email and website addresses, and hours of operation. Also include links to all of your social media accounts, since many prospects are more comfortable communicating through tools such as Facebook and Pinterest. Consider including a contact form, where visitors can email in their requests or questions. You can link to this page from others on your website by using a “contact us” button or link.
If you have products to sell, have relationships with other businesses or websites, or want a place to have conversations with your customers and prospects, the following pages should also be included in your website organization. Additionally, content-rich pages (for Galleries, Testimonials, and FAQs) help make your website even more appealing to viewers — and to search engines such as Google and Bing
- Media / Press
Have you written a book or e-guide? Promote it here. You can also promote links to affiliate organizations (like a closet system partner) on this page. Your product list might include written materials, organizing aids, classes or courses, apparel, CD or video sets, gift certificates, etc.
Posting links to helpful articles, checklists, charts, graphs, photographs, interviews, etc. provides value to your visitors. This helps to make your organization a go-to resource for clients — beyond just their immediate needs.
A blog is important because your site needs to have new content updated regularly in order to stay relevant. Your blog drives SEO (search engine optimization) because search engines love valuable content and will reward you for it by ranking your website higher in search results. In your blog, you want to address your target audience in a conversational-type tone. Let them get to know you on a one-to-one basis — your personality, your goals, your outlook. Include helpful information, links to interesting articles, links to your videos or online photo gallery, success stories and customer case studies (get permission to post these), etc.
A gallery is a great place to post pictures. Post examples of organized rooms or before-and-after shots of client jobs (again, get permission from your clients before posting). Post photos of yourself or your team hard at work on client projects.
People often ask for recommendations when hiring a professional organizer. Get testimonials from your happy clients and post them on a testimonials page. Always get permission to use their names and testimonial first.
FAQ stands for Frequently Asked Questions, and many organizers offer a list of typically-asked questions and their answers. Questions might include:
- “How much do you charge and what’s included?”
- “What does a professional organizer do?”
- “Will you haul away my stuff for me?”
- “Do you keep my information private and confidential?”
Media / Press
If you have been featured in magazines or newspapers, have participated in radio shows or online forums, or are involved with the media and have TV clips, this is the place to promote those links. This online résumé is what gives your business credibility and establishes you as an authority in your field. If you work regularly with the media, this would also be the place to post a media kit that offers media outlets your bio, photograph, list of services and topics about which you are qualified to speak.
Social Media Links
Because social media is how many people find what they are looking for, you will want to consider setting up business accounts for Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, and Pinterest, among others that might be applicable to your business or geographic area. Determine which social media platforms are most popular with your target audience and focus on those. Post to these accounts regularly to increase your engagement as well as your chances of being found through online searches. As mentioned earlier, make sure to include icons and links to these accounts on your website Home Page and Contact Page.
When planning for your business, spend the time and money to get a professionally-designed, well-written website from the start. Even though it’s an up-front expense, it will save you money and stress in the long run. Many websites today are use a “content management systems (CMS).” This easily enables you to update your own text and add or delete photos and information as needed.