You’ve shopped around, you’ve checked out our prices and it’s clear our website prices are the cheapest and most affordable around. Great! But then you worry maybe it’s a false economy. You’ve bought cheap stuff in the past and it hasn’t been a good experience. Maybe it didn’t last, maybe it cost you more in the long run or maybe you just decided you didn’t like it and had to start over. Whatever the reason, sometimes cheap is not the best option financially and it can be worth investing more where it counts.
So, even though our website packages are the cheapest business websites around, here are three things you can do to maximise the effectiveness of your cheap website and fool everyone into thinking you paid a whole lot more for it (and generate more business!).
1 – Good photos
If you’ve come across a really good looking website, chances are they’ve put a lot of work into sourcing some really good looking photos. Unfortunately, sourcing great photos isn’t cheap but it can be worth the investment. Ideally, hire a professional photographer to showcase your business. Create a range of photos, from detailed close ups to overviews and background shots.
When purchasing stock images, download the free sample first, and check to see how it looks on your website, before you commit.
If your budget doesn’t extend to stock or professional photography, check out our list of free resources.
Remember, it’s better to not use any photo than use a bad one that could put customers off. Use photography with care and not just to fill the page.
2 – Well-written copy (text)
Speaking of not just filling the page, it’s important you think about the words on each page. Do they help sell your business, or do they put people off? Think about it from a customer’s point of view. They want to get the main points, and they want to know why they should choose you.
Make it easy for them by including all the information they’ll need to make an informed choice, but don’t give them pages and pages of text to wade through, no one wants that, especially if a lot of it is irrelevant.
Make a list of the reasons people come to your website and the questions they likely want answered: Can you fix my problem, or fill a need, how do you compare with other providers, how much will it cost me, how long will it take and why can I trust you to do a good job?
Be sure to revisit the text on your website from time to time. Every website needs an occasional refresh and things change, so make sure your website is current, up-to-date and accurate.
One last thing: Make sure that finely crafted text is displayed using a nice looking font – choose something sharp from www.google.com/fonts (ideally don’t use more than two font families, one for headings and one for the body).
3 – Smart branding
Branding can be expensive. I’ve worked with companies that have spent over a million dollars on branding, and sometimes that’s just one campaign. For what sometimes just looks like bright colours and squiggles (Spark anyone?) design agencies do pretty well for themselves. What can you do if you don’t have a million dollars to spend on branding? You might not get yourself a nationwide campaign and a fancy scribble but there are a few things you can do to make sure your branding creates a good impression.
- Be consistent – Use your logo in a tidy, consistent way. Use your chosen colours and fonts in the same way. It might seem boring but it’s important for brand recognition that you decide on how you present your business branding, and stick religiously to it.
- Think like a tidy person – You don’t have to be obsessive about it but just make sure when you look at any sort of marketing material you publish – an email, your website, a brochure – that it’s aesthetically pleasing. Everything is neat and orderly, not crowded or cramped.
- Create a brand ‘rule book’ – This should be your north star of how you want your business to present itself. Be as detailed as you can. From font spacing and styles to logo use and layout, it should be a document that all staff can refer to and stick to, at all times.
- Get everything (and everyone) on board – Good business branding isn’t just a marketing problem. The whole business – operations, sales, contractors, signage – everyone (and everything) needs to follow the branding rules. This goes back to the first rule of consistency. In some cases, you might need to appoint someone gatekeeper to make sure nothing goes out without first being reviewed to make sure it adheres to your branding rules.
Save your money with an affordable (but very sharp looking) website
Hopefully, these tips help you to see that an expensive-looking website doesn’t have to be expensive. Yes, you can spend a lot of money on a very fancy website and company branding – sometimes it’s a good investment but not ever business can afford that. So, it’s good to know there are cheap, or even free, options available that allow small businesses with a small budget to create a really good impression.
Get started today with one of our very affordable business website packages that are super cheap to buy but, by following these guidelines, you can make it look like you paid a whole lot more.
Alternatively, if you already have a website but it needs work, get in touch – we’re master renovators when it comes to websites!