So you’ve made the decision to build a website. You’ve purchased your domain name, and you’re in the process of selecting a website company to help make your dreams a reality… But there’s something else you should be doing in these initial stages that is just as important as everything else:
BUILDING AN AUDIENCE TO LAUNCH TO!
Unlike a traditional bricks and mortar business, you can’t work on the premise of ‘build it and they will come’. Websites are essentially hidden – unless you promote them!
First things first, setup a landing page on your domain name. It’s entirely up to you what this page includes, we’d definitely recommend against any of the typical “Under Construction” atrocities that are out there! But here’s some suggestions on the very basics:
- Include your business logo front and centre, as you want this to resonate with your visitors – you need them to recognise your logo and build an association with it.
- Give an outline of your products and services. This doesn’t have to be War & Peace, but at least give users an inkling to what they can expect from your website when it goes online! This will also start to help with regard to search engine optimisation.
- Feature some contact information. It doesn’t have to be a phone number, but at least give people an email address as a means of contacting you.
- Add icons and links to any social media properties that you have – Facebook, Twitter, Google+. If you can get people to connect with you here, you’ve won half the battle!
Now, if you want to step it up a notch and really work to build up that audience, we’d suggest (actually, we’d really recommend) providing a field for people to enter their email addresses. Why?
- You can start building your email database from day one.
- You could use this list as your User Feedback Group to do a ‘soft launch’ of the site.
- You can notify them when the website comes online, which pretty much guarantees some solid traffic to your site on the first day.
You could incentivise people to give you their email address by offering a special deal to those who sign up – if you’re an ecommerce store this could be a 10% discount store-wide during launch week, or if you’re a service based business, try to think of a small thing that you can offer that has high perceived value to your target market.
We’ve done up a quick example of what we think a good ‘under construction’ page might look like using the DBG branding:
In the end, you want to give people who visit your landing page the impression that the launch of your site will be so exciting that they would be fools for not giving you their email address and coming back.
Another positive thing about this is that it also places a little gentle pressure on you to keep working hard on your website with your website company to make sure you launch as soon as you can!
If you’re looking for additional ways to drive people to your page, use social media as much as you possibly can to engage with users, build momentum and get that audience into a frenzy just before you launch.
And whatever you do – don’t forget to make sure your web developer installs Google Analytics onto your landing page!
If you’ve just registered a domain and are looking to setup your online business, give DBG a call – we’d love to help!