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Key Elements Every Business Website Needs

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 A woman sits at a table and types on a laptop. The woman has chin-length brown hair and wears an unbuttoned maroon shirt over a white tank top. The table holding the laptop is otherwise covered with papers and books. The room in the background has vivid red-orange walls.

The information on your company website should speak to both your existing customer base and potential new customers. — Getty Images/kupicoo

Your company’s website is often the first thing a potential customer will see, so creating a solid website is crucial. Your website establishes your business’s credibility and showcases its products and services in the best light possible. Here are six things you should always include on your business’s website, plus ideas for choosing other site elements and picking the right platform.

Homepage

The homepage is your first opportunity to tell website visitors what your company is about and why they should care. Your homepage should start with a compelling headline that speaks to your ideal customer.

From there, you can include a more general description of your company’s offerings. You should also have high-quality graphics that visually explain the main points you’re trying to make.

Creating a video for your homepage is another way to make a lasting impression on website visitors. A video is more engaging for your audience and will keep them on your website longer. Videos are also a great way to help someone new to your business begin to know, like, and trust you.

[Read more: How to Write Great Content for Your Website]

About page

You might be surprised to learn that the About page is often the most visited page on any business website. People do business with other people, so they want to get a sense of your business story and the individuals behind the company.

Your About page should outline how your business started and your company’s mission. You can also include short bios of each member of your team.

The About page should also explain the types of customers you serve and the benefits your business offers them. The key to writing a good About page is to remember that it’s not really about your business — it’s about the customers your business serves.

A services or products page

You also need a page that outlines any products or services your business offers. This page should include descriptions of each product or service you offer and who they’re best for.

You’ll want to include pricing information and clearly explain how customers can make a purchase. This information will allow potential customers to take the next step forward with your business.

If you sell physical products, you should include high-resolution photos of each one. Customers want to get a sense of what they’re purchasing, and images can help convert website visitors into customers. Use free graphic design tools to create photos to match your site.

Testimonials

Just explaining how your products or services work isn’t enough — you need to also include testimonials from happy customers. Testimonials show how your products or services helped solve a problem for that customer. If possible, you should include a name and photo with each testimonial, as this will create more social proof.

[Read more: 5 Smart Ways to Market Your B2B Business]


Your homepage should start with a compelling headline that speaks to your ideal customer.

Contact page

You should make it as easy as possible for current and potential customers to get in touch with your business. Your website should have a separate contact page with your company’s address, phone number, and email address.

If you’re active on social media, your contact page can include links to your social media profiles. It’s also a good idea to include your business hours so people know when they can expect to hear back from you.

An invitation to join your email list

If you’re not giving your website visitors an opportunity to sign up for your email list, you are almost certainly missing out on potential sales. Email marketing is one of the most effective ways to communicate with potential customers and grow your revenue.

Start by creating a strong content offer you know your ideal customer will benefit from. For example, you can write an e-book or whitepaper that gives in-depth information about a topic your audience is interested in. After they sign up for your email list, they can automatically download the free content.

[Read more: How to Create and Manage an Email Marketing List]

Site elements tailored to your business website purpose

Home and product or service pages are must-haves for businesses. For multi-page sites, each component opens on a separate page, whereas a single-page site takes visitors to the appropriate section. However, additional information can improve your search engine optimization (SEO) efforts, enhance customer experiences, and reduce operational costs.

Prioritize your approach by understanding your business website’s purpose. Identify goals and determine how adding website content supports those objectives. For instance, blog posts support your SEO cross-linking strategy, which increases site visibility and educates readers. Accessible shipping and return policies alleviate administrative and operational burdens.

Consider adding the following pages to your business site:

  • Blog: Content management systems
    and e-commerce platforms offer text editing tools. Commit to a
    consistent and manageable posting schedule of customer-centric posts.
  • Press: Showcase media mentions, upcoming speaking events, or local awards on a press page. This page is a good addition when investing in public relations.
  • FAQs: Compile a list of frequently asked questions into
    a user-friendly online document. Update your FAQs based on customer
    support and survey responses.
  • Return and refunds: Avoid negative reviews and back-and-forth emails with transparent return policies and step-by-step details.
  • Shipping: Explain timelines, fees, tracking information, and relevant details so shoppers feel comfortable purchasing from your brand.
  • Case studies: For companies with longer sales cycles,
    case studies help them see how others like them solved similar problems
    using your product or services.
  • Careers: Tell visitors how to join your team with a
    career page. You can include an online application or update the page
    with opportunities.

Choosing a website platform

Customization levels and ease of use vary by platform. Although you can add many page types when using most website builders, some are more challenging to navigate for beginners or offer fewer personalization options. The best e-commerce systems or CMS platforms should align with your skill level and business goals.

Consider the following solutions when building a business website:

  • Wix: With scalable solutions for retail and service industries, Wix is a top pick for small businesses. It supplies lead forms, marketing tools, and built-in web chat.
  • WordPress.com: As a longtime blogger favorite, WordPress.com stands out for its free plan and site monetization options.
  • Square Online: With free and paid site design features and an integrated POS system, Square Online is a good option for brick-and-mortar startups.

This article was originally written by Jamie Johnson.

CO— aims to bring you inspiration from leading respected experts.
However, before making any business decision, you should consult a
professional who can advise you based on your individual situation.

Applications are open for the CO—100! Now is your chance to join an exclusive group of outstanding small businesses. Share your story with us — apply today.

CO—is committed to helping you start, run and grow your small business. Learn more about the benefits of small business membership in the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, here.

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Jessica Elliott

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