There’s no denying that a good online presence is the most successful way to passively increase your sales volume. Assuming you set up properly and keep working on it at a decent pace, the potential for acquiring new clients only increases.
We’ve discussed both online presence and the 2020 pandemic before, but this is an important point of convergence for these two topics when it comes to the contractor business. For obvious reasons, sales volume has decreased and we still don’t have a foreseeable end for the COVID-19 pandemic. Amidst these unfortunate circumstances, contractors have had to find new ways to continue working and marketing themselves without making huge investments.
Which is where online presence comes into play. Due to the pandemic itself, clients will often look up online for services they may require, and that’s the best way for them to find you – so long as you’re there to be found in the first place.
If you’re curious, we have a series of articles on how to deal with difficulties caused by the pandemic, so be sure to check those out. And though we’ve talked about online presence before, it’s about time for a refresh on this important topic now that it’s more relevant than ever.
Make sure your contact info is easy to find
When it comes to a client landing on your social media profile or website, nothing is more of a dealbreaker than not having your contact information easily available. I’m sure it’s happened to you in the past: you find someone’s page for a service that you need, but you don’t seem to find their phone number or email. It’s there somewhere, but you have to scroll around and look for it.
More often than not, potential clients will just abandon the page before finding it, because that’s very frustrating.
Luckily, platforms like Facebook and Instagram will always keep your contact info in easily accessible locations so long as you typed them in. People are used to these pages, so they should always be able to find it.
And though it might seem like a no-brainer, make sure your contact info is correct and up-to-date. You’d be surprised how often an old phone number is left on a page and leads to people sending messages to the wrong number.
The amount of posts changes drastically depending on your business. You will notice that, for example, food delivery services tend to post multiple times a day – naturally, this increases the chances of catching people when they’re hungry and online to spike their interest in a delivery.
Contractor businesses don’t really benefit from incessant posting though. Most contractor services come out of need or interest, rather than impulsiveness. The idea is to post just enough to keep your page alive and kicking, showing potential clients your most recent work, and at the same time, advertising your business. A few posts a week, even if just once a day, is enough for this goal.
What we want to avoid is for a potential client to land on your page and find that the last post was three months ago.
Take good pictures
Social media is all about the pictures. And while nothing can replace a professional photographer for true, high-class pictures, you can go a long way by learning how to take project pictures with your smartphone.
It’s no rocket science either. Even any minor mistakes can be easily patched with simple editing, since most social media already has an easy to follow UI that allows for proper cropping and filters to make your pictures truly shine.
A simple exercise is to take as many project pictures as you can. Upon reviewing the pictures later, you will start to see which ones look better – and if you’re into this sort of data, you can even measure which types of images perform better online. But the most important part is to practice.
Reply to messages promptly
Long gone are the days of fax messages, emails and SMS texts. Emails certainly have their uses, but when it comes to business inquiries, clients usually opt for informal messaging on social media or apps such as WhatsApp or Telegram… and you have to be there.
Both Facebook and Instagram have dedicated messaging sections, and Facebook even displays how fast you usually reply to messages. If you decide to use this feature, be sure to answer fast – when people see you reply within a few minutes, they’re much more likely to engage.
Similarly, it’s worth keeping your work phone near you at all times for random inquiries. Even if you can’t relay all the information on the spot, a simple “I can get back to you later” is enough to secure an anxious client.
Publish client testimonials
Client testimonials are always a great way to increase sales. Satisfied clients can recommend your services better than anyone, and if you manage to work for influential people in your community, that’s even better.
At the very minimum, if a client isn’t willing to offer a testimonial, ask them for an online review instead. The more you have, the better – reviews are often a deciding factor for hiring. And if you’re wary of the occasional negative review, even those can be dealt with.
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