Local Business Website: Determine Which Type is Right for You

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Find out which type of local business website is right for you. Let’s identify your needs and translate that into the right website for you to grow your business and revenue.

What kind of local business website do you need?

The problem with websites is understanding what you really need. If you skimp on design and copywriting, the website may not do enough for you. If you add features your visitors don’t use, you may waste money.

But, if you get clear on what you need, you can work toward a website that gives you a return on investment.

First, do you need a website?

If you are a very small or new business, view this video. You may not need a website, or need one yet.

Yes, it is possible to use only Google Business Profile and social media while ramping up. This is not a good option for most businesses. But it is for some. Here’s a fun case study of an expert SEO who helped a local diner get more business this way.

Book a call to get help with your Google Business Profile

If you do need a local business website, here is what to consider.

First, do a deep dive on your current needs and assets.

  • What kind of local business are you?
  • What are others in your field doing?
  • How established are you?
  • What is your financial budget?
  • What is your time budget?
  • How do customers find you now?
  • If that improved, what would it look like to you?
  • Do you need to increase volume or quality of leads, or both?
  • How much revenue could you generate with more visibility?
  • How much more work could you handle? Do you have a plan to scale?
  • Would the increased revenue pay for your website and marketing in a year’s time?

Then, consider how your business is most likely to benefit from a website. It needs to perform for you. There are several marketing techniques you can use to get the most from your local business website.

For example, your website could be used to aid word-of-mouth marketing. You could work on search engine optimization or use paid ads for more visibility. You may send people to a portfolio or case study on your site. Do you want your website visitors to call you, book an appointment, place a to-go order from your menu or sign up for your email list?

There are 3 types of local business websites used for different marketing goals.

3 types of websites for doing local business.

Now we’ll outline 3 typical local business websites and who might use them. Our goal here is to help you narrow down what you need and how you will use it. We want you to form a realistic website plan for you and your team.

Creating a marketing plan for your local business website

1. A Branded Brochure Website

A brochure website is simple — it could even be one page. It shows your business brand and personality, it outlines whom you serve, what you do, your key benefits, and it offers a first step in your sales process.

Consider how someone might use this site and how they will find it at all. It will have limited exposure in search, but it should show up if someone searches by the business name. If you do word-of-mouth marketing and someone says, “Hey go check out Mara’s Yoga for You”, that person could find out more about you and contact you. If it is well-designed with the right content, it can motivate people to contact you. If done poorly, it will be a turn-off and drive people away.

The Basics for a Branded Brochure Website:

  • Logo and simple visual branding
  • Professional copywriting – 200 to 400 words
  • Quality stock images (not expensive)
  • Photo or video of the business owner
  • Basic business information
  • Professional email (branded @business-name.com)

2. A Brick-and-Mortar Business Website

This type of local business website works a bit harder than a branded brochure website. It conveys all those things in a brochure website, but is meant to funnel traffic from online search to a physical location. There may be service or product pages, blog posts, news articles, and a social media feed. Search engine optimization (SEO) might be a consideration, depending on your budget and the size of your business.

Businesses like restaurants or hair salons may use their site to make appointments or reservations. Some local businesses might incorporate ecommerce into their website. Brick-and-mortar locations can also connect their Google Business Profile with their online booking services and show up on Google Maps — driving people to their front door.

Basics for a Brick-and-Mortar Business Website:

  • Brand and marketing strategy
  • 3 to 7 pages
  • Professional copywriting – 900 to 2800 words
  • Minimum photography: Quality stock images (not expensive)
  • Better photography: brand photos of location, services, products, staff
  • Blog and links from social media to your website
  • Google Business Profile optimization
  • Focus on getting reviews
  • Basic business information
  • Professional email (branded @business-name.com)

3. A Lead Generation Website

If your business has a sales process — perhaps you give a quote or people need to be educated about your approach — then a lead generation website is what you need. This type of website can be a hub for online marketing for your sales funnels. You want people who visit your website to call you, book an appointment or get on your email list — to get into your sales pipeline in some way.

Service area businesses — such as contractors that travel within a certain area — are good candidates for this type of local business website. Start small to build a good foundation of SEO and a website that speaks to your target market. Then you can increase your SEO and other marketing efforts as your revenue grows and you increase business capacity. Paid ads, in-person networking, a public relations campaign, and even a print marketing campaign could all be used in tandem with this kind of website.

Suggested for a Lead Generation Website:

  • Brand and marketing strategy
  • 5 pages and up
  • Professional copywriting – 2,000 words and up
  • Minimum photography: Quality stock images (not expensive)
  • Better photography: brand photos of location, services, products, staff
  • Portfolio of work or case studies
  • Blog and links from social media to your website
  • Google Business Profile optimization
  • Focus on getting reviews
  • Search engine optimization
  • Other marketing techniques
  • Basic business information
  • Professional email (branded @business-name.com)

Website Strategy — Next, Outline the Type of Website You Need and Plan Your Actions

If you’d like to talk about your specific website needs with a professional, sign up for a Website Strategy Session with mhcDesign. You’ll get a full report outlining a website plan and marketing ideas for your particular business.

The website plan is yours. You can take it and use it however you like. It is yours. If we are a good fit for your project, we’d be happy to implement it for you, of course. Contact Maureen at mciaccio@mhcdesignstudio.com.