6 Ways Websites Save Small Business Owners Time
It’s amazing just how powerful a good website can be for a business. My clients are often delightfully surprised to not only see an immediate return on their website investment, but also an overall increase in their sales and their time.
I love hearing this feedback from clients! Increasing profits is wonderful. As business owners, seeing sales is really nice but, we can always make more money.
We cannot make more time.
A strategic, well-designed site can save us time. Our websites have the potential to be efficient task-masters that perform a variety of roles. Instead of hiring a full team to manage our day-to-day tasks, our sites can step in take care of things.
This potential not only serves us but it also serves our potential customers and clients, or our current base providing a seamless experience. We can add pieces of information that answer questions, facilitate communications, and support our business giving back more of our time to focus on other things.
Here’s a list of 6 ways your site can save you time:
Instead of spending time going through lots of emails, answering the same questions about your hours, location, or how to contact you, add details like these to your site.
A great place to add this information is the Footer of your site. The Footer - available on most Squarespace templates - appears on the bottom of each page of your website.
No matter where a customer lands on your site, the Footer is visible, so your site visitor is always aware of who you are and what you do. Since site visitors will not always land on your home page, the Footer will serve as a guide that takes them back into your site.
2. Scheduling Appointments and Meetings
Your website can reduce time spent on scheduling appointments. Rather than send multiple emails to determine availability, running the risk of lost emails or a breakdown in communication, you can create a central place where all meetings are scheduled.
Consider adding an online scheduler or calendar to your site.
Squarespace offers an integration with Acuity Scheduling. You can get the upgraded Emerging Entrepreneurs service level of the software for free as a Squarespace member. Usually, this service is $15 per month.
Your Acuity Scheduling software can be added easily to a page of your website. In fact, Squarespace has a page started for you.
To create your own dedicated page for scheduling appointments with Acuity in Squarespace, sign up for an account and then take the following steps:
From your Squarespace account, navigate to PAGES
Unless you want your scheduling page to appear in your navigation, add the page to your NOT LINKED section
Select PAGE from the CREATE NEW PAGE menu
Steps continued below image.
4. From the dropdown menu, select OTHER. There, you will see an option for ONLINE BOOKING WITH ACUITY - that’s the page you want!
5. Don’t forget to add a PAGE TITLE.
6. Select START EDITING and add all of your details. When you’re all done, hit save and, voila! You have your own online scheduler!
3. Processing Sales 24/7/365
You could hire someone to take orders over the phone or answer the same questions over and over again for each customer. Wouldn’t it be easier if customers enjoyed a little independence while they viewed your products and services?
Of course, it’s always nice to chat with the people who purchase our goods and invest in our services but, what if they don’t have the time? What if you’re unavailable to talk around the clock?
This is where your website can step in. Your site allows you to automate more processes, one of which is processing your sales and orders.
No matter what time zone a person is in or where they are in the world, your website is open and available to them when and where they need it. Make it easy for them to visit, get information, and shop your offerings.
4. Answering FAQ’s
Do you find you get the same questions? Are visitors to your site emailing you the same queries?
How about adding a FAQ page to your site? Squarespace makes it really easy to add, organize, and remove pages from your site.
Gather up your frequently asked questions and create a new page for them on your site. A good place is either in the Main Navigation area or the Footer area of your website.
Once created, you can always add new questions regularly received and the corresponding responses. When emails are received about questions from the FAQ you can simply provide a link.
5. Providing information on how to hire you
Have you ever landed on a website, wanted to either hire the business for a service or purchase a product but it wasn’t clear how to do this?
I think we’ve all had this experience. And how did it end? We took our business elsewhere.
I don’t want this for you, so the best thing to do is make it super easy to work with you by displaying all of your details on your website.
This information is best placed on a sales or services page. A sales page and a services page are often terms used interchangeably.
A good sales page will include the following:
Who you are
What you do
Who you work with
What you offer
What you charge
What your availability or lead time is
How to get in touch or take the next step in working with you
Providing this information on your site will be the difference between welcoming individuals excited to work with you and turning people off completely. People like having access to information.
Be upfront and clear about your offer. Your potential clients and customers will be so grateful that you are!
6. Take the guesswork out of collaborating with you
Sometimes people want to get in touch because they would like to collaborate with you in some way. Perhaps you would be perfect for a news piece, they want to include you on their blog or interview you. Maybe another creative or business wants to collaborate with you.
Make it easy for them to get in touch with you by creating a contact page on your site. It doesn’t have to be super fancy but it does need to be helpful.
In Squarespace, you can create a contact page quite easily. Squarespace has a few contact page templates ready to go and all you need to do is plug in your details.
There’s, of course, the option of creating your own custom version from scratch. Sometimes individuals will do this and add their FAQ on their contact page and make it available there as well as other spots on their website.
There are several ways to facilitate open lines of communication between your business and potential collaborators. All you have to do is create them and make them easy to find on your website.
Your website is so much more than a visual representation of your brand. It is a robust tool for creating and maintaining excellent communication between your business and those wishing to engage with it.
There are several time-saving tasks and responsibilities your site can handle for you 24/7/365. People like to be able to access information at all hours of the day, and from anywhere in the world. Make it easy for them to get the information they need when they need it.
When envisioning your website, try to view things from your potential client and/or client’s perspective. Consider the kind of experience you want to have when visiting a website.