By Susan Saldibar
How important is increasing qualified leads to your 2019 plan? Assuming your answer to be “very”, it would be logical to ask, “Is your website up to date and calibrated to convert traffic to qualified leads?” Who asks those kinds of questions? People who understand how websites work and know how important they are, especially given the fact that your website is where most consumers make decisions about you. So, depending on the state of your website, that’s either pretty cool or pretty scary.
I spoke with Celena Canode, Marketing Campaign Manager for G5 (a Senior Housing Forum partner) last week about the importance of having a website that isn’t just functional, but fantastic. “The number one job of your website is to convert qualified traffic,” Celena tells me. “And that goes far beyond just having a functional site that looks nice.” Way beyond, as it turns out.
Senior living websites have become more critical to lead conversion than ever before. That’s because the web is where adult children of potential residents conduct research. “For those searching for senior living communities, your website is their first introduction to your brand, so it has to work hard for you,” Celena tells me. That means on both the front end and the back end since your website is also tied to SEO. For those communities who haven’t optimized their websites accordingly, 2019 is the time to do so. And, according to Celena, it doesn’t have to be the all-encompassing project it used to be. “You can get a fresh, new website up and operating on all cylinders much more quickly than you think,” she says.
But you have to do the groundwork first. G5 recommends senior living communities go back and revisit their original digital marketing strategy. Especially if you haven’t done much with your site for a couple of years. Here are just a few of the things you should be taking a fresh look at:
Your audience. Define 2-3 “personas” you want your website to speak to. Map out what matters to those personas. Is it a certain set of amenities? Your location? Other extra services?
Your business goals. What are the essentials that your website needs to convey to visitors? Do you want them to schedule a tour, or simply call with questions? Are there certain amenities that are more important to spotlight than others? Do you want your floor plans to be easier to find? Do you want to show off your reviews?
The “must haves”. Do you need your site to be tightly linked to your social media pages? Do you need to have space for a weekly blog? What links do you have available for your resource page? What shape are your property photos in? How will you display them?
There are, as you can imagine, plenty of other things you should also be looking at and G5 has a great checklist that you can download here to get all the details.
The bottom line is that your website is the nexus where all points come together in your lead generation efforts. So, if you haven’t done much with your website in the last 24 months, odds are your sales efforts and anything else you are doing (or think you are doing) to compete and grow aren’t working as well as they could be. “You need to demand as much of your website as you do of your top performing sales counselors,” says Celena. And now is a good time to start.
For more information on how G5 can help you with a fresh new 2019 website, please visit them online.
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