Is your website S.M.A.R.T.?
Posted on 21st June 2013 by Valorie Reavis
Websites may be one of the first things you did to get your digital marketing on a roll; painting a picture of your business for everyone on the Internet. What you may not have known is that the website remains one of the most important elements of a smart digital marketing campaign. It serves as the hub of your online efforts and the conduit to your salon, ushering clients through your salon doors.
What has likely changed since your first website is the complexity of how to get the most out of your websites. Consumers are more fickle, impatient and demanding compared to in 1995 (or even 2005). Here are four ways you can add simple tweaks to your website to appeal to these clients and bring in more business.
#1 Reviews & Feedback
According to econsultancy.com, 61% of customers read online reviews before making a purchase decision, and they are now essential for websites trying to attract new business. When prospective clients looking for a new salon come to your website, having real-time, authentic reviews on your website from your clients is essential to getting them to act. Add the Spotlight reviews widget to your website on strategic pages like your services page, your stylists' bio pages and perhaps your homepage.
#2 Online Booking Links
Online booking has become expected by consumers, and salons that haven’t added online booking to their client communications arsenal are missing out on revenue. Studies have shown that providing online booking will increase new client acquisition, client retention and also decrease the time in between appointments. To get the most from this new, client-preferred booking technology, make sure to place the link to your booking system in strategic locations where clients would logically go to book with you. Some important places:
- Header – the upper right hand corner of a website typically gets the most action, so place your online booking link in the header on the right-hand side. That way it’s on every page and in a prominent place.
- Contact Page – when people go to your contact page, they’re often inquiring about an appointment. Give them all the options they require to contact you – phone number, email form and online booking.
- Stylist Bios – place a booking link next to each stylist's bio so that after they review their profile, they’ll be able to act quickly
- Services Page – another quick action link for clients after they review which services they want to book. For best results, offer some descriptions of your more complicated services so clients understand what they are booking. Also, do not use technical jargon; explain your services like you were speaking to a novice client.
#3 Track Conversions
If you are spending money with Google Adwords, it’s a good idea to understand your return on investment for your advertising dollars. You can track how much of your advertising is actually contributing to online bookings, and even get an ROI figure from Google on your conversions. Set this up in your Shortcuts Online Console to connect the two systems and get complete clarity on the impact of your investments.
#4 Email Newsletter Signups
Your clients want information from you, beyond what they get in the chair. The appeal of offers, deals and hair and beauty information is strong to a large majority of people that visit your website. That’s why they are looking at your website in the first place, after all. So, capturing interest upfront is an easy way to build your Set & Forget Marketing email database and also understand their interests by asking them some quick questions up front. Embed this form on your website in strategic locations. The best places are:
- Header – consider a drop down box that is hidden until you click ‘Sign up for Email Updates!’
- Sidebar – this is the smaller column on your interior pages. Place the form on your interior pages, not your homepage.
- Footer – this is an easy place to put the signup form that ensures it’s on every page. It’s out of the way for more important pages, like the homepage, but it may be a bit too out of the way for less important pages.