It is obvious that before creating your outstanding website, you should think about how would you like to communicate with your visitors.
- Would you like them to call you or have to fill in a contact form?
- Would you like them to be able to write by email?
- Are you going to create a blog?
- Would you like them to follow you on social media?
- Would you like to build your own social platform?
- Are you going to create a newsletter?
- Will you have forum or web chat?
- How about a customer service portal?
- Are you going to use push up notifications or mobile app?
Companies often overlook the most obvious and straightforward questions in working out their strategies and end up trying hard to use every possible form of communication with their customers. However, the consequence of trying to be everywhere at once is usually that your communication is never quite good enough anywhere.
No universal formula works for every single business, but I highly recommend you focus on building a communication strategy personalized for your own company. Focusing on fewer ways of communication will give you the possibility of mastering them all and present your business in the best possible way.
Your website is your promise to your customers, in the same way that your brand is a promise to them. Setting up the wrong expectations can be detrimental to your business.
Here is a list of what is important for some of the most used communication channels for your website:
CONTACT FORM OR EMAIL
Online communication today is extremely fast. Most people expect a response in no more than 24 hours. The maximum time for email responses should be less than 24 hours during the week and 72 hours at the weekend.
If you have the ability to be fast and you have the right people to answer inquiries for you, this is an excellent way to communicate with your customers. We can create interactive contact forms and automate your online conversations with your users. Check out this simple example!
Some businesses can’t respond to emails so fast, and if yours is one of them and you still want to use contact forms or email communication, don’t forget to leave a note on your website, clarifying when your customers can expect an answer.
Another important part of answering emails is WHO is going to do it.
Make sure that the people responsible for answering your emails are the ones who have the skill to sell your products.
A long, long time ago, far, far away, there was an excellent small company with amazing products. They decided to go global and create a website in English. All was going perfectly until the moment they added a “call us” button on their website. Unfortunately, that phone number was on the very desk of the only person in the building who didn't speak English at all.
A phone call is the preferable method of communication for some brands, and it is the fastest one.
People feel secure if they can call you.
No matter what, when you decide to leave your phone number on your website, check if there will be somebody who can take the call and knows the communication standards of the brand.
FACEBOOK / TWITTER / YOUTUBE / LINKEDIN = SOCIAL MEDIA
Social media can work miracles for your business if you know how to use it. Brands need to be where their potential customers are and yes,
building relationships with them is easier on social media: sharing valuable branded information, creating experiences, instant communication, building brand awareness, etc.
Focusing on the most important platforms for your business is the key here.
It is not wrong if your company is not on social media. If you do not have time for it, this is much better than having empty profiles and nobody to answer to the messages and comments.
If you have the resources to develop your social media strategy, here are some key points on how to decide which social media platforms to use:
1. Do your research and see which your customers use of social media platforms.
2. Check the most used channels and decide how much time and effort your company is ready to invest in social media management.
3. Determine which social platforms to use based on the most used by your potential customers and add social buttons to your website.
4. Set up goals and build your strategy for your social media presence.
5. Research, adapt your strategy to your public, work hard, measure! Then repeat!
You do not have to do research every single time after measuring the results, BUT do not forget to follow your competitors. Study the best practices in your industry and research and brainstorm for new content ideas regularly.
Creating valuable content has been—and always will be—the best way to attract people and Google to your website.
We all know that everything new comes with great enthusiasm. It is the same with new websites and blogs. If you do not have time to create new content for your blog on a regular basis, you'd better focus on using other types of communication with your website users.
BUT if you can deliver quality content for your blog, then you should use it as much as possible!
Providing high-quality content on a regular basis is one of the most secure ways to invite your visitors to come back.
Do not forget that most people are generally looking for more information about your products before buying. It depends on you what are they going to find online.
Email marketing is one of the most used and powerful communication channels to convert your website visitors into real customers. It gives you the opportunity to share personalized information on a regular basis, drive traffic to your site, build brand awareness, introduce your latest offers, and transform your users to customers.
DO use a newsletter:
- If you have a clear strategy and plan for using it
- If you know how to make people subscribe to it
- If you have enough resources (time/money) to create valuable content
DO NOT use a newsletter:
- If you think that adding a Subscribe button to your website will in itself give you a list of subscribers
- If you do not have the resources to send regular, valuable information to your email list
- If the information you are about to send is not interesting for your visitors
We all have our internal spam filters active 24/7 and we accept only the information we really love.
Ask yourself how much quality content can you create for your users before adding a Subscribe button. Is this content interesting enough to pass your users' internal “spam filter”? Will they love to read it?
Building a website is not only about beautiful design and nice images, although a good design is always the most-needed first step.
Now, more than ever, what is behind the website is much more important: your promise, products or services, marketing strategy, content, company culture, ideas, and a lot of hard work.
If somebody tells you that a website will make you famous in a month without any hard work, I must disappoint you. A website is a constant investment of time, effort, and money.
Planning your communication strategy is one of the keys to a website which works for you and your business.
Make your online presence a positive experience for your potential customers. Show them that you understand their needs. Give them just the right amount of information. Put all this into a beautiful design, and you can be sure that this strategy will work for your business.