At Hinge, we recently interviewed leaders from a long-standing, successful technology firm. The secret to their success? Strong client relationships that begin during the initial proposal phase. Isn’t it interesting that even for a tech firm, the human element is the key to success? As people, we instinctively know this is true but don’t always acknowledge it due to emphasis in our marketing efforts. All business relationships start with introductions – ones that are not usually face-to-face.
According to our recent study, Beyond Referrals: How Today’s Buyers Check You Out, prospects look at a firm’s website 80.8% of the time and search online 63.2% of the time. So, the vast majority of your prospects are checking your website before they decide whether to contact you. Of course, technology firms need to emphasize their tech solutions on their website, but they must also find ways to make themselves relatable from a human perspective.
Unfortunately, many technology firms’ websites are kind of like Teflon: it’s uniform and nothing sticks. They are often filled with so much technical jargon and “corporate-speak,” that they don’t hold the reader’s attention. Even if a prospect understands their particular technology solution, it’s hard to get a feel for the company. Who are they? Can they help me solve my challenges? What can I count on? Who would I be dealing with? If none of these answers are obvious, visitors will bounce and look elsewhere.
Here are a few ways to make sure your website properly introduces your firm to your prospects.
1. Let Your Personality Shine Through
Most firms have essential, key elements upon which they have built their business. These are the differentiators you want to be known for – and they could be one thing or a combination of things. For instance, it could be your company’s history of innovation, your focus on supplying the US Navy, or developing apps for financial institutions, or, as is the case with Hinge, a dedication to research and open sharing of findings.
These essential traits must be evident on your website. If you talk about them on your home and main pages, and use your graphic elements to display them both literally and figuratively, then your prospect will get a very clear idea of who you are.
2. Don’t be Shy, Introduce Yourselves
Not only is your website the place to introduce your company, it should also introduce your people and give them a blogging platform to share their knowledge and bio pages to share their story. Highlighting your people and their expertise helps in several ways:
- It shows that you are proud of your staff and their accomplishments. This is also a great way to show that your leaders and staff are seasoned professionals, have advanced degrees, etc.
- It demonstrates openness and transparency. Being able to put a face with a name makes a prospect feel more at ease when reaching out to a new firm. They can also see your bench strength and know who they might be working with.
- SEO boost. Your employees who are industry experts are probably being searched for by name in Google. Letting them be found on your company website enhances your reputation online.
- It multiplies your firm’s social media strength. Empowering and urging your employees to share your firm’s social media messages through their own personal LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, etc. is a highly effective way to grow your social media reach.
- It adds color. When possible, sprinkle your team bios with a few snippets about their hobbies and special interests. Little details like the CEO’s passion for snowboarding, or the accountant’s sideline as a playwright, capture your reader’s attention and make your firm more memorable.
3. Write like you speak.
Write like you’re having a conversation as you build out content on your website. Imagine a relaxed chat with a prospect over coffee. You probably wouldn’t use a lot of convoluted sentences full of jargon and techno-speak – or you’d soon find your prospect’s eyes glazing over. Of course, you would explain your business in terms they could understand and put into their own context.
Your web copy should be written the same way. This doesn’t mean you should avoid technical terms. In fact, you should highlight them—particularly if they are important search keywords. But be sure to explain them in language a layperson will understand. Not only will your prospects appreciate the education, they will begin to trust you as a source of information.
Making your technology firm’s website appealing to your prospects can be done in both simple and sophisticated ways. The key is understanding that your prospects genuinely want to know who you are, what you can do, and what makes you unique.
If you would like more information on incorporating these ideas, check out our Website Planning Guide.