Your website is your first impression, so how can you make a good one?
I hope this issue of the Executive Report finds you well. In our last issue, we covered the process of updating your needs analysis as your customer’s lives change. With more people working from home, using more energy, and improving their homes, demands are changing. Metal roofing can address these with energy savings, longer lifespan, and high quality.
The problem is, you can’t bring this information to your customers if you don’t have your first point of contact, your website, built correctly. Especially right now, as people research products online and spend more time and money from the comfort of their homes, a clear and effective website is an invaluable part of your sales strategy. Nowadays, almost every company has a website and a presence on social media. Still, some neglect their website when it could be crucial to expanding their business. A website can help sell your products, but it can also be a way for potential customers to research metal roofing and educate themselves on its benefits.
One of the biggest problems facing the metal roofing industry is awareness of modern metal roofing’s advancements. Many people still believe that metal roofing is for barns or outbuildings, not homes. Although the metal roofing industry has made significant advancements in coatings, styles, and quality over the years, bringing awareness is a major battle every metal roofing contractor, distributor, and manufacturer has to fight. Using your website to educate homeowners on the benefits of metal roofing not only helps you, but the industry at large and is an excellent way to establish your brand as an authority on metal roofing.
What this doesn’t mean is filling your website with unnecessary or overly technical information. Instead, use language anyone can understand and educate your customers. If you can help your prospects grasp why metal roofing is the best mix of price and performance for long-term use, they will see its value and be much more likely to purchase. When customers feel like they can make an informed decision, they are empowered.
Organizing this information in a user-friendly way is critical to your website’s success. Many websites are cluttered, difficult to navigate, highlight the wrong things, and don’t give the customer a straightforward way to take action in the buying process. One way to think of it is by showing your customer where they are (navigation), what they can do (call to action button) and why they should pick you (statement of unique value). Check out this video for an in-depth explanation of these three principles each website should follow.
Clear up cluttered websites by reducing the number of navigation tabs and leaving less important content at the bottom of the page. The top of your site is prime real estate, so feature your logo, name, three to four tabs of navigation, a call now button, and a linked phone number. Directly below this, make your best project picture the highlight. Customers should know what you sell, who you are, how to get in touch with you, and how to move forward with the buying process. Beyond this, creating content (guides, articles, videos, etc.) to populate your website is another way to bring value to your customers and build relationships. When you provide value, it creates a positive experience, building your brand, and establishing your credibility as a trusted source of information.
Another kind of content worth creating is a case study. Don’t think of a case study as just a few short paragraphs giving the bare minimum with some pretty pictures of the job. Instead, write it as a story featuring the customer as the subject and solving their problem as the central conflict. A compelling story paired with relevant quotes, pictures of the finished job, video if you have it, and an eye-catching title combine to make one of the most valuable tools on your website. A well-written case study gives the customer an inside look at your approach to a roofing project from start to finish. They can see your sales techniques, installation skills, ability to meet deadlines, and more. Also, link to case studies in a social media post, submit them to industry groups like the Metal Roofing Association, and use them as lead generators.
Take this content, plug it into your newly refined website and start serving your customers online. Use your first impression to show prospects that your focus is on helping them solve their problem, not just making a sale.
Todd Miller has spent his entire career in the metal building products manufacturing industry. He is president of Isaiah Industries, an organization recognized as one of the world’s leading metal roofing manufacturers. Todd is currently Vice President of the MRA (Metal Roofing Association) and a Past Chair of MCA (Metal Construction Association). Through his website, he strives to raise the bar on standards and practices to provide property owners with the best possible products for successful roofing projects.
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