Website Redesign or Refresh? …When to Go All in

website redesignIf your website isn’t representing your construction company well or pulling in leads effectively, it’s time to change things up. While there are situations in which a simple update is enough, other times you’ll get better results from a full redesign.

When a Redesign is Worth it

A complete website redesign involves updating both the look of the site and its underlying information architecture. You’ll get a site that’s more attractive to your target audience and easier for them to understand and use.

If you started as a small home renovation company, but you’ve been expanding into multifamily housing, a redesign can help you better target your new ideal clients.

Consider a complete redesign if your site shows any of these symptoms:

  • It looks outdated – Design trends are constantly changing and a website that looks five years out of date can give your visitors the impression your whole company is behind the times.
  • It’s not easy to use – If your site is confusing and difficult to navigate, isn’t usable on mobile devices or takes more than two seconds to load, it’s turning away potential prospects and should be reworked.
  • It’s not working for you – A site that isn’t coordinated with your current business goals, ranks poorly in the search engines or fails to bring new leads is a good candidate for a redesign.

When to Stick with an Update

If your site works correctly on both desktop and mobile and fits with your current business goals, consider a basic design refresh. Maybe you’ve changed your visual branding and need the colors, fonts, and images on your site updated to reflect that.

Maybe you could use a new functionality or two. For example, you might add a feed that displays photos of your construction work your clients have posted on Facebook or Instagram using your company’s hashtag. To gather more leads, you might have some of your best content “gated” to require readers to supply an email address for access.

3 Tips To Attract New Construction Business Through Your Website

attract visitors to websiteActively hunting down new leads is all part of running a construction firm, but getting warm leads to come to you on their own will make your job a lot easier. By fine-tuning your website to attract new construction business, you can grow your firm without adding to your marketing workload.

  1. Direct Your Traffic – Design your site to guide visitors toward giving you their contact information. Make it easy for them to find essential information, such as your services, portfolio, and the market sectors you specialize in. For each page, consider what your visitor will want to know next and make sure that information and your contact information are easy to find. If you’re using a lead magnet, such as a white paper or helpful checklist, to attract new construction business, highlight that content on your homepage, in your sidebar, and at the end of your blog posts.
  2. Offer Live Chat – Live chat isn’t just for retail websites. Given all the complexities involved in planning a construction project, your visitors are bound to have questions. If they can’t get answers fast, they might just take the easy route of clicking over to your competitor’s site rather than calling you to ask. With a live chat window, your visitor can get their question answered quickly and you’ll have the valuable opportunity to engage them in a conversation and set up a phone meeting.
  3. Introduce Yourself Through Video – Especially if you target business people, such as property developers, some of your visitors will be short on time and not in the mood to read through a bunch of text. A short introductory video helps you reel them in and hold their attention while you give them an overview of what you do and how you stand out from the competition. Video also gives your visitor a chance to hear and see you “in person,” which helps break the ice and encourage them to give you a call.

 

5 Tips for Promoting Your Website

website promotionA website that’s skillfully crafted to pull in construction leads is a key part of effective online marketing, but it isn’t much good if it sits unseen. A little strategic promotion ensures your site will have an audience to work its magic on.

  1. Use social media wisely – Social media can bring you new website visitors and boost your site’s search engine rankings, but avoid the faux pas of constantly broadcasting ads. Base 90 percent of your posts on tips, news, facts, and other non-self-promotional content and make the rest direct calls to visit your site.
  2. Get on video – Video sites such as YouTube, Vimeo, and DailyMotion are popular sources for tips and advice, so make sure your content is there for your potential clients to find. You’ll not only reach a broader audience, but also build trust and rapport in a way text alone just can’t. Video also helps you grab attention on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
  3. Leverage other blogs – Publishing on the blogs of complementary businesses, known as guest blogging, introduces your firm to new audiences while giving you the benefit of another company’s endorsement. It’s an especially effective online marketing tactic if you have a less common specialty such as historic building preservation, restaurant construction or modular construction. Search online for terms such as “guest blogger” or just ask your favorite construction and real estate blogs if they accept guest posts
  4. Invest in paid advertising – Done well, paid ads can bring quick results. Google Adwords and Bing Ads let you bid on search terms. With Facebook Ads and LinkedIn advertising, you can precisely target the demographics that will see your ads.
  5. Keep publishing – The more content on your website, the better the chances of that content showing up when one of your potential clients searches for construction project tips online. A consistent publishing schedule lets the search engines know your blog is active and worth ranking highly, but more importantly, it keeps your readers coming back because they know they can expect fresh content.

 

5 Signs It’s Time For A Website Overhaul

website overhaulYour website is the face of your company and should present you as a modern construction firm that’s easy to work with. If your site is dated, slow, confusing or just not getting results, it’s probably time for a website upgrade.

  1. Your site isn’t mobile responsive – Your prospects are busy professionals who do a lot of their business on the go from their smartphones. To reach those prospects, you need a version of your site that looks sharp and is easy to navigate on mobile devices.
  2. Your site is hard to navigate – If your site has grown over the years with no design updates, chances are it’s become complex enough for your visitors to get lost. Confused visitors are likely to click away. Up-to-date navigation helps your visitors quickly find what they want, such as your contact form or relevant sections of your work portfolio.
  3. Your site loads slowly – If your site takes more than three seconds to load, it’s probably turning visitors away. With today’s high internet speeds, fast-loading sites have become the norm. A delay can make your visitor assume your site is down and click away. With a website upgrade, you’ll get cleaner code, optimized images, and other improvements that speed things up.
  4. Your bounce rate is high – Your “bounce rate” is the percentage of visitors who leave after looking at just one page. You can find it using an analytics program such as Google Analytics or Piwik. For a website offering a service, a rate of around 10 to 30 percent is reasonable. Adding useful, engaging content can bring down your bounce rate.
  5. Your design is outdated – Just like fashion, website design trends change with time. If your site looks like it hasn’t been touched in 10 years, your prospects are liable to wonder what else you haven’t been keeping current on. A re-design will give you a fresh, modern site that you shows your firm keeps up with the times.

For more ideas on how a website upgrade can help you win over more clients, contact us at Construction Monitor.

 

Key Elements Your Construction Website Should Have To Attract New Business

website checklistWhether you’re planning your first company website or redesigning your existing one, knowing what to include will help you create a site that can attract new construction business effectively.

Essential business information – Visitors should understand exactly what you do within seconds of landing on your site, so include a clear description on your homepage. Then instead of listing all your services on a single page, create separate pages for each that allow you to go into more detail. Help your visitors get to know and like you by including an About page that shows your firm’s relatable human side.

Dedicated contact page – To make it easy for prospects to get in touch, create a page with a contact form, your email address, your phone number, and if appropriate, your office address and working hours. Include links to your social media profiles so prospects can contact you on Skype, Twitter or another platform they prefer.

Visible call to action – Include a strong call to action in your header or sidebar where your visitors will see it without having to scroll. You might invite your visitors to call for a strategy session, sign up for your email list or download free information.

Portfolio – A well-developed portfolio lets you show would-be clients what you’re capable of and how you do things differently from your competitors. When possible, hire an architectural photographer who can show your work off to its best advantage. Include completed projects and works in progress. Add descriptions of the goals, challenges and accomplishments related to each project.

Testimonials – Your satisfied clients are some of your most valuable assets when you’re trying to attract new construction business. Listing testimonials on a dedicated page is one option, but you can also strategically position short quotes from happy clients on your other pages as well as in your sidebar.

A website that can attract new construction business is one that’s detailed and easy to navigate. Include information and design elements that make it easy for visitors to see the value in your expertise and you’ll be well on your way.

 

3 Key Things Every Construction Website Should Have

construction websiteThere’s so much you could do with your construction firm’s website that it can be hard to determine which improvements are worth the effort. To get the most out of your site upgrade, start with a few proven website best practices.

Gallery-Style Portfolio

Nothing can convey the full effect of your work like good photography. To really show potential clients what you can do, you need not just a few photos on your project pages, but a complete online portfolio organized as an easy-to-browse gallery. Many online services are available that make setting up a gallery on your site easy.

Snapshots from your phone are fine for quick social media updates, but a portfolio demands quality. Invest in a professional architectural photographer who can capture the unique character of your work and highlight its most impressive features. Include not only finished buildings, but also stages of the building process.

In-Depth Services Pages

Crowding brief overviews of all your services onto a single page does a disservice to your skills and the value you offer your clients. Instead, create individual pages for each of your primary construction-related services. Detail exactly what the service is, how the process works, and what benefits it brings your client. The more your prospective clients know about what you can do for them, the more likely they’ll be to get in touch.

As a plus, focused service pages help improve your search engine ranking. A content-rich page focused on a specific topic is more likely to rank highly for related search terms.

Testimonials

A good word from a few satisfied clients boosts your website visitors’ confidence by acting as third-party proof that you can deliver. Praise from clients also humanizes your firm and can help showcase your more noteworthy services.

Written testimonials are fine, but for extra credibility, ask some of your best clients if they’d be willing to do video testimonials. Follow website best practices by strategically placing testimonials on your Home page, About page, and services pages.