A professional website is essential for every business that wants to prosper in the technology age. Apart from being an authoritative platform on which the company communicates its brand, it also helps considerably with engagement and conveying your services. It also makes you stand out as a professional in your field.
Then there’s marketing. Through website analytics, a business owner can quickly tell the demographics of those who show interest. On-page and off-page SEO also goes a long way in building online visibility and search engine ranking.
But how do you actually build a website? And what can you do if you can’t afford one?
How Do I Build My Home Services Website?
There are various ways to go about building your home services website. And frankly, anyone can create a website these days with a good Internet connection. Here are your options:
Template-based website builders
These require no design or development skills at all and are exceptionally popular when it comes to building a website on a low budget. Some of the best website builders out there include:
Do keep in mind that you will still need to pay for things like a domain name, business email, hosting, and customized themes. There’s also photography to take into account, or the purchase of stock images. You will additionally need to put in some time and effort to learn the platform of your choice. WordPress, in particular, is the trickiest but also the best when it comes to ranking on the search engines.
Seek out a freelance web designer/developer
It is not secret that you can hire freelancers online these days for a fraction of the price you would pay your local creative agency. This again applies to those on a small budget who are also short on time and other resources. The freelancer you hire to design and develop your website may even be available to check in on your website every so often and perform maintenance check-ups. They may even be willing to post content for you and assist with admin tasks as well.
Some of the most popular freelance outsourcing sites include:
While an affordable option, finding the right freelancer may take some time and effort. To streamline the process, make sure you create an ad with specific details about what you want, so that the freelancer can bid on it knowing all the specs of the job.
Moreover, don’t hire someone simply because they’re cheap; peruse their profile and portfolio first and have a look at what projects they are currently working on (you would want to avoid anyone already working on 27 other projects!). Before you decide to hire, hop on a video call with your shortlisted candidates to verify that they are not scammers or fake profiles — unfortunately, this does tend to happen when there is no supervision or control over who creates a profile.
Hire an agency
Agencies may be your best option when it comes to creating a professional-looking, fully functional website. They won’t limit your options with template designs and quick fixes, and they are usually comprised of specialists, in which case you may be able to get a full-package of web design, marketing, and branding services by a team of real experts who know what they’re doing.
But do be aware, these professional services come at a higher cost due to the quality they offer, and a website alone may cost you anywhere from $500 to $10,000! As a small business that requires an uncomplicated website with only a few pages, consider putting aside $1000-$3000. If you’re serious about your business, you will not squirm at making such an important investment.
5 Alternatives to Building a Home Business Website
Are you hoping to avoid the whole website-building hassle altogether? If you are, you can still build your online brand and presence. It’s only the platform that will be different.
A website is not the only tool that a business can utilize to create an online presence. There are various alternatives you can look to which as much less pricey, too. Below are some of the most commonly sought after alternatives for home services businesses:
1. Google My Business
A Google My Business page is an all-in-one listing management tool. This tool displays your business information and your business’s location will also appear on Google Maps. You can also take advantage of other tools, like Reviews and Insights. You can even create a DIY site if you like and promote events and special offers. It will boost your visibility on the search engine results page when a relevant query is placed. A GMB page is responsive, mobile-friendly, and can be optimized for SEO.
2. Online Local Business Directories
Yes, you can pay for a listing on your local online business directories such as Yellow Pages and Foursquare. These online directories allow you to optimize your listing for SEO and showcase as much information about the business as you can. You can also just list the basics – name and contact information of the business and services and working hours, and you’re good to go.
3. Review Sites Listings
Review sites such as TripAdvisor, Yelp, and Angie’s List are well-optimized for search results. Hence, a listing on these sites will allow you to take advantage of their undeniably impressive business-boosting functions. The best part of registering your business with review sites is that clients tend to trust any review they read on them! And if you’re low on reviews, you can always invite your current customers to these platforms and have them give their two cents.
4. Facebook Business Page
Facebook has over two billion active users. It is one of the few platforms that are continuously improving their B2B offerings and helping new business promote themselves. With a Facebook business page, you can create an e-commerce store, accept payments, book appointments, share content through posts, create promotions, announce events, set up ad campaigns, and do pretty much anything you need to attract and retain customers. You can also use Facebook for SEO purposes or targeted advertising. The possibilities are endless!
5. Online Marketplaces
Online marketplaces perform well on the search engines, and a listing on them can significantly boost your presence and sales. They are also a great starting point for small niche businesses, as you can position your business in front of your target audience without the need to resort to advertising. For home services business, your go-to marketplaces should be Handy, ProReferral, and Serviz.
Regardless of the options you choose, you must maintain a professional online presence at all times. Be sure to craft an online marketing strategy and implement, review, and improve your online marketing efforts constantly.
If you need help figuring out what alternative to use for your home business website, feel free to ask us any questions.