In today’s post, our franchise development team introduces 4 essential factors that every franchisor’s website should have.
- Short page load times (aka quality hosting). Imagine: you’ve spent countless hours building a business model you’re proud to offer to other entrepreneurs. You’ve worked day and night trying to design the perfect webpage that’ll capture the user’s attention and convince them to request a consultation. Likewise, you’ve stretched your budget thin outsourcing compelling content, advertising services, and search-engine optimization.
Everything is in place, but your site just isn’t performing. What’s going on here, you wonder…
But when you type in your URL to take a closer look at your site, you notice it takes forever to load; you’re sitting there for 10, 20, 30, even 40+ seconds before your lovingly crafted content appears.
While you may have the patience to wait out these length page load times, potential leads do not. In fact, a recent survey suggests that users will wait only 6-10 seconds before abandoning the page for another. It doesn’t matter whether you’ve built the most beautiful site detailing the best franchise opportunity on the internet; if your site’s hosting is subpar, its performance will be too.
Page speed is especially important when making first impressions on prospective franchisees. These users will treat their user experience as an indication of what they can expect while working with you, so make it a speedy, efficient, and enjoyable for best results.
- An interactive user experience. Your website should not just be a dry, static vessel of franchise information, but rather should be written and designed in a way that takes the user through an interactive experience – think of it as the difference between reading a textbook or getting a hands-on tour.
When thinking how to design your website’s interactive experience, try to predict and answer questions the user may have. You should also funnel users from introductory material (“why own a franchise?”, “benefits of franchising,” and so on), through specific value showcases (promising industry breakdowns, reviews of franchise awards and accreditations) towards the call-to-action endpoint in a way that creates a sense of movement and progress.
Finally, one last tip involves numbering tabs to give the user an instant “roadmap” and progress chart for the informational journey they’re about to embark on.
- Consistent branding and up-to-date advertisements. New leads are fickle and skittish; you’ll need to convince them right away that your offer (and your site) is trustworthy and worth reading. This means avoiding some common red flags.
One of the most common mistakes we see is inconsistent branding, which can be as egregious as mismatched logo colors, or as subtle inconsistent heading format from one page to another. Another major red flag is outdated advertising, which makes your site look old and irrelevant. These kinds of QA checks and updates can easily be overlooked by busy franchisors, but they make a big difference. For this reason, we recommend raising these issues with your franchise development website managers so they can handle the small details while you focus on growing your brand.
- Highly visible social media assets. Though social media platforms are not going to get you franchise development leads in and of themselves, they do play a big part in reassuring leads and gaining their trust. Today, people want to know that they can reach the people behind the corporate front with a few simple clicks, and social media remains one of the most widely used platforms for this kind of audience engagement. Adding a Twitter button or Facebook page banner to your site can go a long way towards making the user feel as though their questions and input are welcome.
Want to learn more about franchise development? Browse dozens of free resources on the subject or speak directly with a member of our team at http://www.clicktecs.com.
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