For electrical contractors, the COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the importance of establishing and evolving their digital presence in a marketplace that has been profoundly impacted by the health crisis. Electrical contractors are designated essential businesses, making it imperative, at a time when digital has trended exponentially, that your website clearly communicates how to contact you, what your services and experience are and who is on your team.
But those are just the basics. From web design optimized for different devices to cutting-edge functionality trends, it is important that your website be a distinctive and unique gateway to your business.
I built and ran e-commerce and digital marketing for U.S. Electrical Services, Middletown, Conn., and Crescent Electric Supply Co., Dubuque, Ill. Over the past nine years, I personally have met with more than 250 electrical contractors across the country, from Fairbanks, Alaska to the Bronx, N.Y., to gain insights into their needs so I could create solutions to make their lives easier and help them to grow their businesses.
There are some fundamental key features that are critical to a website’s functionality, ease of use and attractive presentation:
- Your website needs to be mobile-friendly and optimized for different screens, from smartphones to tablets. It is estimated that mobile devices comprise roughly half of all web traffic.
- Speed is everything. Attention spans become shorter and shorter every year, making it critical that your website loads instantly.
- Especially for electrical contractors, SEO-rich content is vital to make a compelling presentation of your services, as well as establish your company as a trusted resource through blogs and case studies.
- Such fundamentals as service locations, service pages, contact information and testimonials should be easy to access.
- Professional photography elevates a website’s presentation. One picture can be worth a thousand clicks! Portraits of your team also helps forge a personal connection with visitors to your site.
- Live chat capabilities convey responsiveness to visitors and will help to convert prospects into leads.
- Video content, including video testimonials and “who we are” videos, is another great way to visually convert visitors.
- Social media buttons (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc.) help to drive customers to your social media presence and establish your professional bona fides. Social media posts should highlight new content, including news, promotions, company milestones or blog posts.
- Email marketing is a low-cost method to keep you front of mind with your customer base. It helps to remind them of the services you offer and is effective for delivering promotions that you may have going on.
Who’s to say that things will get back to “normal” when the pandemic is over? Many analysts are forecasting that conducting more business online is here to stay. This has far-reaching implications for electrical contractors looking to promote their services and gain clients, and this is why it is important that your website be fluid, continually refreshed and kept up to date.