Selling Professional Services? Learn How To Improve Your Own Website

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If you promote professional services, this little blog series should be of interest! I hope to encourage and help you to look afresh at your website. But relax – it will be without the pressure of a marketing company or social media consultant breathing down your neck. And, assuming you’re good with words, it won’t cost you a penny either (especially if you have two or three people who can appraise your work impartially) and it should increase sale conversion.

Software developers, accountancy firms, legal services, education and training, business development – professional services all with one thing in common; they rely to some extent on word-based descriptions, word-based promotion. And if, like most businesses, they’ve had their eye on SEO reports and social media statistics, the chances are that their website has been overlooked and is in serious need of refreshing; the likelihood is that they’re missing a trick when it comes to converting visitors into enquiries or sales.

Are websites still relevant? Oh yes! The humble website remains a primary tool for engaging with potential clients and customers. This has not changed. Whilst the platforms for accessing the site have evolved, websites themselves haven’t – not as a primary marketing tool. And they don’t need to; their job remains the same as it always was – to connect with impact, a place for powerful written communication, short, concise, relevant, compelling, irresistible – and of course, a symbol of your firm’s impeccable professional quality. The problem is that most fall well short of this.

“I want to help you to become a better editor.” True or false: “I can write; I am educated; I don’t need to pay someone to edit my work.” The answer is ‘false’ – but not because aggressive copywriting firms tell you so. The key word here is ‘edit’ – and I want to help you to become a better editor, able to…

…Eliminate Website Waffle! Through this mini blog series – Website Waffle – I want to help you step right back from your Website Waffle – I want to help you step right back from your written work and see it through the eyes of your biggest critic or your most cynical potential client. I want to help you present your business confidently with complete professionalism and maximum promotional efficiency. I want you to connect to your audience with real impact. And we’re going to do this through your website, but of course you can extend the basic principles to all of your business writing.

It’s all about communication! You will need to throw out any preconceptions or guru-derived information about how to write good copy. It’s not that these will be wrong, just that they tend to send you in the wrong direction. Instead, I just want you to think about ‘communication’. Why? Because there is absolutely NO point spending any time working on written material of any kind unless or until you know exactly what you are trying to say, why, and to whom. And there’s one other consideration – the target audience’s resistances. Grasp all of these right and the words will simply fall into place. And if they don’t, then (and only then) do you need to hire the services of a wordsmith.

This process is what I call ‘editing’ – building up a virtual conversation between you and your target by putting yourself both sides of the table, and then converting this conversation into written text. And over the next few blogs, I will give you simple ways to do this which can massively improve the impact of your website copy. And you know what? Get this right and at last all that time and money spent on SEO and social media will pay off – you’ll get the traffic and you’ll convert more sales.

In the Website Waffle series I’ll make reference both to my own website (a good illustration of the technique) and to a fictional business site – Daft Solutions Ltd – which gets is all horribly wrong! See you next time.

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