May local businesses have relied for years upon directory listings and word of mouth recommendations.
Of course, recommendation still leads the way when it comes to companies gaining new clients, for this reason many long established firms still do not see the benefit of a website or social media presence, relying alone their outstanding customer service to carry them forward.
What is overlooked by many is that it is the way in which these recommendations happen that has changed.
When searching for a service such as an electrician, carpet fitter or rental van it has become common practice to request a recommendation on Facebook or other social media channels. Enquirers will post a request to locally based, often postcode related groups to request a recommendation from both friends and strangers. Without a website to link to, if you are lucky enough to be mentioned, you become just a name in a mix with many others. A website link at this point makes you stand out from the crowd, shows your professionalism and potentially announces your business to hundreds of viewers.
The power of recall
If you are trying to remember a company or individual you have used for a service in the past to recommend them or use them again, how do you remember them? It may be that you have safely stored away their business card to be passed on, or referred to, you may even have stored their number in your phone. More than likely you will pick up you phone or tablet and search for their name or their service. If for example your are searching for a particular carpet fitter, but you can’t recall their name, you will type “carpet fitters” into Google alongside your local town or city.
There you will presented with several carpet fitters at varying positions in the rankings, jostling for your attention. Chances are you will stop by one of the websites in position 1 or two, and never find the one you were searching for in the first place, particularly if they do not have their own website.
A company your clients will trust
With the right website you have the potential to stand out from your competitors and capture new potential clients, when they are actually searching for the service you offer. Make sure any website you invest in having built, works without glitches and matches your companies branding. Often, even after they have spoken to you to arrange a quote, by way of a reference to ensure you are a trustworthy and legitimate company. Without your own, regularly updated website, you won’t be showing your full potential, and you could even lose the lead.