Having a web page about each of the services you provide is critical to the success of your website and your business. Too many businesses get their service pages wrong and it’s costing them leads and customers. In this post, I’ll show you how to create service pages on your website, so you can win more leads and customers and improve your search engine rankings.
There are two big mistakes businesses make when it comes to creating service pages on their website.
The first mistake is having only one web page that lists all of your services. While you should have a web page that lists all of your services, each service on that page should link to a page about that individual service. Businesses often make this mistake because they don’t know what content to put on each service page, or because they are lazy. There is no excuse for this.
The second mistake is having long paragraphs of text that explain your services. This mistake can often be attributed to using website templates. While the template you purchased may have seemed like a deal, it’s actually costing you money because website visitors aren’t converting into leads and customers.
Imagine you have one web page that lists all of the services you offer.
Now imagine your target audience is searching for just one of the services you offer on Google. Your target audience is going to have a hard time finding your business on the first page of Google because you don’t have a web page about the one service they are looking for.
Now imagine with a little luck your target audience does find your service page. How likely do you think it is that they will convert into a lead or customer. They are searching for one specific service, and you have it buried on the page with a dozen other services. Your odds of converting them is not as high as it could or should be.
Let’s see what could happen if you took a different approach. Imagine you have a web page for each service you provide.
Now when your target audience searches Google for a specific service you offer, you have a web page optimized to rank for that specific service. It’s much easier for your target audience to discover your business when they have a want or need for a service you offer.
Your target audience not only finds you on Google, but they see you have a web page that speaks directly about the problem they are trying to solve or the service they are looking for. Because your webpage is focused on one service, it’s aligned with your target audience and you have a much greater chance of converting them into a lead or customer.
While there are a lot more details and nuances to the above examples, hopefully the importance of having individual pages for each service has been conveyed.
Before we dive into the details of the second problem - dividing web page content into sections - you need to understand how people consume website content.
Consumers don’t read websites like they read printed text. While people read paragraphs of text in books, magazines or newspapers in their entirety, they tend to scan text on web pages.
Eye tracking studies have found that web site visitors have two common ways in which they consume website content. They tend to scan web pages in either an “F” pattern or a “Z” pattern.
When scanning a web page in an “F” pattern, people browse the content of a web page starting in the upper left corner and move across the page to the top right corner. They then move to the next line of content, but instead of reading the entire line of content from left to right, they only read part of the line and then move down the page. Scanning content in this way creates an “F” pattern.
When scanning a web page in a “Z” pattern, people browse the content of a web page starting in the top left corner and move across the page to the top right corner. However, instead of moving to the next line of content, they skip down the page and repeat the process of reading from left to right. Scanning content in this way creates a “Z” pattern.
In both scenarios, consumers often repeat these patterns until they find what they are interested in. So, while you thought having long paragraphs of text on your web pages would be beneficial for SEO purposes, it turns out, it can hurt your conversion rate.
By breaking your web page content in to sections, instead of having long paragraphs of text, you make your content easily scannable. This helps web site visitors quickly find the information they are looking for. The faster your target audience can find the information they are looking for, the better experience they’ll have. The better the experience you provide, the greater the chance they’ll convert into a lead or customer.
“Wait a minute” you say to yourself. He’s telling me I need to break my web pages into sections that are quickly and easily scannable, yet here I am reading paragraphs of text. Good observation. There are pages on your website, such as a blog, where long form text is expected. However, this is the exception to the rule. The content on most web pages, including your service pages, should be divided into sections.
Now that you know why you need to break the content of your web pages into sections, let’s look at how you can effectively divide the content of your service pages to maximize conversions.
Every web page should serve a unique purpose. The purpose of a service page is to help your target audience discover you on search engines when they search for a service you offer, and to convert them into leads and customers.
In order to convert your target audience into leads and customers, you need to help them quickly and easily find the information they are looking for. But what information are they looking for?
Consumers are typically looking for the quickest solution with the least risk. That means you don’t have to have the best or cheapest service. It means you need to make them confident you can resolve their problem faster than anyone else, and with little risk to them.
So, how do you convey this information? You break it up in to sections that your target audience can quickly and easily scan.
Below is an overview of web page sections you can use to build your service pages. This is not intended to be an exhaustive list of sections- use them as a starting point. Depending on your industry or business objectives, you may think of new sections to use.
The sections below are presented in an order that has been proven to work, but can be reordered to suit your needs. In fact, you can and should experiment with the order of page sections. Sometimes, moving just one section up or down the page can have a dramatic impact on the performance of the web page.
Above the scroll or ATS for short, is the part of the web page people see before they have to scroll. This is the most important part of any web page as it will determine if the visitor will give the page a chance or leave right away.
Your ATS section needs to have a message that clearly and concisely identifies the audience the page is intended for, the problem they face, the solution you provide, and the result they can achieve using your service.
Your ATS should also include a CTA (call to action). This is the action you want website visitors to take, such as “Call Now”, “Request an Estimate” or “Schedule a Consultation”.
In addition, you should include an image or video that supports your message and your CTA, or reflects the outcome the consumer can achieve by using your service.
The why us section is short and sweet. It’s three or four points, with each point represented by an icon and a sentence.
The purpose of the why us section is to convey to consumers why they should consider you.
A few examples include:
The service areas section quickly conveys to consumers that you service their area. This can be conveyed by showing a map of the areas you service and/or by listing the names of the areas you service.
The audiences (or industries) section conveys to consumers who your services are intended for. For example, if you are a plumber, you may provide both residential and commercial plumbing services. This is a broad way to categorize who you help. Residential and commercial customers could be further broken down to landlords, tenants, retail, industrial, restaurant, dentists, etc…
By being specific about who your services are for, you can connect with your audience on a deeper level. If you are a dentist and need plumbing work, and you see that the plumbing website you are on services dental offices, you are much more likely to engage that business as opposed to another plumbing company that doesn’t speak directly to you.
Just like the services area section, the audiences section helps your audience know they are in the right place.
The reason a consumer is visiting your website is because they are searching for a solution to their problem. The problems section conveys to your target audience that you understand the challenge(s) they face.
The purpose of the problems section is not to rub your target audience’s problem in their face. It’s to subtly remind them of how their problem makes them feel, so you can present them with the feelings they’ll have after engaging your services.
Identify a few of the problems your target audience is facing and present them as questions or statements. Use supporting imagery such as icons for each of the problems so they are easy to consume.
Now that you’ve reminded your target audience of the way their problems make them feel, it’s time to help them see the light at the end of the tunnel. Let them know how they could feel if they use your service.
The purpose of the outcome section is to convey the end result your target audience could achieve by purchasing your services. You want them to associate a feeling of relief with your services.
Use a few bullet points to convey the results they will achieve with your services. You may also want to include an image or video of someone who represents your target audience, celebrating or in a happy mood. You want to convey this could be them.
It’s one thing to tell your target audience about the results they could achieve, but it’s an entirely different thing to show them people who have actually achieved those results using your services.
Social proof is a critical factor the consumer’s decision making process. Consumers are often apprehensive of purchasing something without first doing research. They have questions and fears they’re looking to resolve. By showing them social proof, you help alleviate some of the purchase hesitation they might have.
You can demonstrate social proof in a number of ways. You can use testimonials - especially video testimonials, case studies, or if you are a performance based business, you can publish results your customers have achieved. Put on our creative thinking cap and come up with ways you can demonstrate social proof to your website visitors.
You’ve identified the problem(s) your target audience is facing, and the outcome they could achieve. You’ve also shown them social proof so they know your services work. Now it’s time to provide them with an overview of your service and what they will get.
The purpose of the solution section is to provide an overview of how your service works and/or what is included with it. A simple way to do this is to list three to nine features and benefits your service provides. Be sure to distinguish the feature from the benefit. While it’s tempting to talk about the features in detail, it’s the benefits that your target audience is most interested in.
One question consumers often have is “How do I get started?” As the business owner, it may seem obvious to you that all you need to do is pick up the phone and call or fill out an online web form. But don’t assume it’s obvious to your website visitor. No matter how easy you think it is to get started with your services, spell it out for your target audience.
Use three or four points to address the steps consumers will go through to reach the outcome they want.
There is some debate about whether or not you should display pricing on your website. Think of it this way, how would you feel if you walked into a retail store and had to ask for the price of every item you were interested in. It doesn’t create a good user experience. If you can, you should display the price of your services on your website.
Depending on the industry you are in and the type of services you provide, you may not be able to list your prices. This is often the case if you provide a complex service such as building a new home.
When you put prices on your website, don’t present them as a cost or expense, present them as an investment. Remember, you’re not just selling a service, you are helping people find solutions to their problems. They are investing in your services so they can feel better in some way.
If your services have lots of options and/or add-ons, list the “starting from” price.
Remember, your target audience has questions about the services you offer. A good way to address some of their questions and concerns is to provide an FAQ (frequently asked questions) section.
Your FAQ’s should reflect the topic of the web page. In other words, don’t have the same FAQ’s on every page, even if they are generic and apply to all services.
Create four to six FAQ’s for each of your services. If you’re not sure what to write about, just think about the questions consumers have about the services you offer. How much does it cost? How long will it take to get? Do you provide refunds or a guarantee? Etc…
Having a lead CTA (call to action) on your service pages is a great way to help convert consumers not quite ready to become customers into leads.
You’re investing a lot of time and money getting consumers to your website. Don’t let them leave. If they aren’t ready to purchase from you yet, give them a reason to give you their contact information so you can follow up with them in the future.
A great lead CTA is a downloadable document or access to a video or series of videos. You can use anything you want as a lead CTA, as long as your target audience sees value in it. Have your target audience fill out a web form with their contact information in exchange for your lead CTA.
You now know why you need a web page for each of the services you offer, and how to structure the content on those pages. It can take some time to create the content for each web page section, but the investment of time is worth it. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
Toby is the founder of STRADEGY.CA and principal Advisor. He's been helping service businesses navigate the digital economy since 1996.
Getting more leads and customers from your website is easier and more affordable than you think. Talk with an Advisor to learn how.
Toby is the founder of STRADEGY.CA and principal Advisor. He's been helping service businesses navigate the digital economy since 1996.
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