Local business owners have an advantage when it comes to online search. Nearly half of all Google searches are queries for local information, and 97% of consumers learn most of what they need to know about a local company online, according to SEO Tribunal.
These statistics are pretty compelling if you’re a local business owner, particularly one that offers niche services. Whether you restore clocks, run a hot yoga studio, or own a vegan bakery, establishing an online presence is key to helping potential customers discover your business.
If you don’t have a website yet for your niche services, here’s how to create one, along with the potential benefits you can reap.
Why you need a website
A website can boost your business’s visibility. According to Search Engine Land, 63% of consumers use websites to locate or interact with businesses. Another 30% of them won’t even consider a business that doesn’t have a website.
Think of a website as your business’s digital storefront. It gives consumers a chance to learn about your products and services before they ever set foot inside. Also, in an era when consumers no longer rely on the yellow pages or printed business directories, a website is key for discoverability — 72% of people who search online for local information will visit a store within five miles of their location, HubSpot reports.
Local searches are often driven by need. For example, a parent will search online for a party rental company if they need to rent a bouncy house for their child’s upcoming birthday. A website can help you land this sale by boosting your presence in search engines when consumers are in the market to buy, connecting you with people who need your particular service, at the exact moment they need it.
How to set up a WordPress.com site
You can build your very own website on WordPress.com in a few simple steps:
1. Set up your account
Pick the relevant category for the type of site you’ll create (in this case, business). Next, select an industry category (e.g., real estate agent), and then fill in the search bar with your business’s name (this will appear at the top of your site, but you can change it in the future).
2. Choose a style for your site
WordPress.com gives you design options based on your desired aesthetic — for example, modern, sophisticated, or professional. You also can browse and choose a theme yourself. If you’re not a designer, don’t worry — themes provide the design and layout for your site. All you need to do is add the content.
3. Pick a domain name
A domain is the web address people will type online to go to your site. For example, if you’ve recently opened a clock restoration business, your domain name might be chicagoclockrestoration.com. You can get a free domain with a WordPress.com extension (for example, chicagoclockrestoration.wordpress.com) or purchase a custom domain directly from WordPress.com (the first year is free with a paid plan).
Are you a blogger? Why not choose a .blog domain extension for your site?
Are you a consultant? You can get a .consulting domain.
WordPress.com has dozens of excellent top-level domains (TLDs) for you to choose from.
4. Select a WordPress.com plan
Plans range from Personal to eCommerce. Choose whichever option best meets your business needs.
5. Build your site
Once you’ve completed the setup process, you can create pages and posts and add different media (photos and videos). Since this is a business website, you’ll probably want to create a home page, an “About Us” page, and a “Products & Services” page. Once you create each page, add content so potential customers can learn more about your niche services. If you restore clocks, for example, a photo gallery of your previous work may help you land more customers.
6. Remember headings and keywords
Google uses headings you’ve included in your content — like H1, H2, and H3 — to determine the relevance of your site’s content. Headings are elements of HTML code that distinguish the headlines or titles in your content from the body text. The headlines and subheadlines then appear larger and more prominent to the reader, like the subheadlines in this article. In the actual coding language, an H1 title tag would be written around a title like this: <h1>Our Selection of Dairy-Free Birthday Cakes</h1>. These tags range from H1 to H6, with H1 being the tag for the page’s main title, and then descend numerically in order of importance for Google’s search rankings. So, for example, if you want Google to rank your page well for vegan birthday cakes, be sure to include that keyword in the main H1-tagged title.
All these headings — and all your site’s pages and content — should contain keywords that people will type in search engines to find your business. For a vegan bakery, relevant keywords might be “vegan cupcakes” or “dairy-free birthday cakes.” You then can use these keywords for headings like “The Ultimate Red Velvet Vegan Cupcake.”
These are just some helpful tips to get you started. WordPress.com has several checklists and guides that provide more information on how to set up and launch your site.
Get more customers
If you have a niche business, you need to maximize your reach — and a website is the perfect way to do that. Rather than relying on word-of-mouth marketing or foot traffic, you can help potential customers discover your business by setting up a digital storefront. With a solid online presence, you can quickly connect with people who need the specialty services you offer.
Thousands of small businesses and online stores call WordPress.com home.
Whether you’re looking to promote your business or share your story, we have a plan that’s right for you.Create your own website