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According to the many founders, CEOs, and marketing directors of manufacturing companies we’ve worked with over the years, there are five common points of pain when it comes to managing an old, outdated manufacturing website.
What you’ve told us is that in addition to looking dated, your website doesn’t communicate who you really are as a company.
You’re also bothered by the fact the website doesn’t do anything; it’s basically a digital brochure that provides a static customer experience. And when you do try to initiate a project to update the website, it seems like no one can agree what changes should be made.
You also know that you should be making your expertise and knowledge available to prospects and customers, but you just can’t figure out how to make it happen. Finally, most of you are frustrated your company is not coming up in Google search and you’re trying to figure out what to fix so that it does.
Sadly, for many of you, these pain points persist even after a new site has been designed and launched. It doesn’t have to be this way!
Go ahead and indulge your impulse to look at your competitors’ websites but resist the urge to copy what they have done, because you are not trying to be them. If you really want to carve out a unique image in the hearts and minds of your ideal customer, you’re going to need to look within to find the right direction, and chances are you’re going to need help because it’s really hard to see the label from inside the jar.
The days of the brochure site are done, but you already knew that. What you might not know is that the B2B customer who is researching a new machine solution is just as savvy as the B2C consumer who is researching a new pair of running shoes. Both expect an engaging user experience that anticipates their needs with increasing accuracy, and a deep well of helpful information that constantly grows and evolves, and so your site absolutely needs to provide them with those things as well.
At the core of today’s highly effective manufacturing website is a powerful content management system, aka CMS. You may still need your web person for the care of the website structure and system maintenance, but today’s intuitive and user friendly content management systems enables anyone who can use a word processor to upload content to the site themselves in just a few clicks.
We haven’t met a manufacturing company yet that isn’t loaded with unique talent. If you’ve been in business for a decades (or ten), we can pretty much guarantee the talent is there. The challenge you face is in how to transform your culture in to one where those experts come forth willingly, even eagerly, and become part of your content generating machine.
At some point, people looking for manufacturing solutions on the Internet will use a search engine, and for the most part, that search engine will be Google. If you are not coming up in buyers’ Google search for solutions, you are not adding enough unique content to your site, often enough, and chances are your site is not optimized for search, either. Unless your site is intentionally set up so Google can go in and look through it, it’s pretty much guaranteed that no one (at least no one who doesn’t already know about you) will be able to find you.
Your ideal customers are looking for you, and it’s your responsibility to ensure they can find you.
Embracing the steps to create a highly effective manufacturing website will ensure they have a chance to get to know you and what you have to offer before they offer the business to a company they already know – or another company they have found online that has beat you to the punch.
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