While many customers look at your website for key information (location, hours, how to contact you), there are other people who would like to know a little more about WHO you are and WHAT you stand for. If you can engage them in one of the following ways, you might stand a better chance of making a sale.
A little can go a long way – and it is best to underuse this than overuse it. Lean towards the light humor, especially if it reveals something about your approach to life or your personality. A good example of that can be found on the home page of Higinbotham’s Bed and Breakfast http://www.higinbothams.com/. The first page begins by describing owner Mary Jo Higinbotham in the first paragraph and then moves to her husband and their property.
It reads, “Jim, her willing but kitchen-averse husband, has renovated the house over a 3-year period with the help from a variety of experts.” The sentence is designed to give many married couples a chuckle of recognition of the sorts of divisions of duties that are shared in a marriage. She loves the kitchen, he hates it. He handled the renovations but recognized his limitations and relied on the experts.
In your contact information, it is important to give as much information as possible. Directions to your location are wonderful – as is a link to a mapping site like Google maps. If you can take phone calls on either a landline or a cell phone, and are willing to give both numbers, just seeing them both on the website can let a customer know that you really care about hearing from them. If you are often with clients or otherwise unavailable, a promise to return phone calls within 24 hours can place you head and shoulders above the rest. Just BE CAREFUL to only make that pledge if you can meet it. A broken promise is worse than no promise.
These can do so much. Once a customer sees the landscapes at Beech Springs Farm http://www.beechspringsfarm.com, they want to jump in the car and go visit. But the note that the farm is only open to public by appointment tells the customer that yes, they would love to see you, but yes they do have too much work to stop and visit with drive-by visitors.
Images can also subtly convey messages. On the McIlhenny Banner website, for instance, http://www.mcilhennybanners.com, the first image shows President Obama standing in front of a banner at Arizona State University. It shows that the work done by the Gettysburg company gets to be associated with some important people and important places.