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Tradespeople – here’s why updating your website could win you more customers

2-minute read

Tradespeople – here’s why updating your website could win you more customers
Sam Bromley

Sam Bromley

27 September 2021

Research from Yell reveals that trades and transport websites are the least frequently updated, with their last update being 20 months ago on average.

Yell’s research also found that customers spend 54 per cent less money on average on websites that haven’t been updated regularly. So, if you’ve been neglecting your website, is it time to give it some love?

Customers research businesses online before booking or buying

Coronavirus restrictions over the last 18 months have accelerated the shift to a digital world. With the high streets closed and customers staying inside, many businesses decided to move their presence online.

Customers now largely expect tradespeople to have a website, with Yell’s research finding that 80 per cent of customers are either likely or very likely to look for a trades business online before using its products or services.

And 34 per cent of tradespeople stated that they thought their website was unimportant before the pandemic but now think that it’s important, demonstrating a change in attitude among business owners.

The research, which also analysed over one million SME websites, reveals that a business’s website can influence where customers spend their money:

  • 36 per cent of customers said they’re planning to make all their purchases online even now restrictions have been lifted
  • customers spend 54 per cent less money on average on websites that haven’t been updated
  • when asked what would most likely increase the chance of buying a product or service from a business, 42 per cent of people said it would be a website having up-to-date information

But trades and transport websites are the least frequently updated, according to the research. These websites were last updated 20 months ago, so tradespeople could be missing out on customers.

But there are important reasons why websites aren’t updated

Tradespeople who run their own business are already strapped for time, meaning that maintaining a website can fall down their to-do list.

Yell’s research revealed the common reasons why tradespeople don’t update or amend their website – do these resonate with you?

Reason% agreed
Lack of expertise47%
Fear of something going wrong39%
Lack of money39%
Lack of time34%
We don’t need to make any changes24%
Nothing puts us off making changes11%

And 63 per cent of tradespeople agreed that it’s costly to update and maintain a website.

How can tradespeople win more customers through their website?

There are undoubtedly benefits to building and maintaining a business website. Yell’s research asked tradespeople what benefits they’ve seen from either launching a new website or updating an existing one during the Covid-19 restrictions:

Benefit% agreed
Increased customer satisfaction54%
An uplift in sales45%
Increased website traffic38%
An uplift in enquiries37%
An uplift in repeat business37%
We haven't seen any benefits4%

If you’re wondering how to update your website, consider these three points from Yell’s website analysis:

  • 34 per cent of businesses had a website with horizontal scrolling on mobile devices (a common complaint amongst mobile users)
  • 13 per cent of websites had text too small to be read on a mobile device
  • nearly one in five (19 per cent) weren’t optimised for mobile at all

Yell suggests four main areas to focus on:

  • the design of your website
  • keeping your website up-to-date
  • improving site loading times for customers
  • security (for example, if you take payments over your website)

At Simply Business, we have guides to help you take your business online and market it successfully:

What stops you from updating your website? Let us know in the comments below.

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