Here at iformat, we feel the need… the need for (website) speed!
So you want to elevate your tradie marketing. In particular, you want a website that’ll blow the competition out of the water, and which will get the calls rolling in.
There’s a lot that goes into building effective websites for tradies. As you can probably guess by today’s topic, loading speed is one of them.
How does speed factor into marketing for tradies? Can something as simple as speed really affect how many jobs you receive? Does speed matter at all?
(Spoiler alert: the answer is “yes!”)
3 surprising (and less surprising) ways website speed affects your business
1) Increased leads and sales
What’s the purpose of your tradie website? To bring in more phone calls.
Specifically, your website should be optimised to push (and get you found for) the jobs you want, whether that means calls from a certain area, ones that get you in and out, or ones that have the highest profit.
Of course, even the best website won’t convert visitors into callers if it takes forever to load!
Even relatively small delays can have a tangible impact. According to Neil Patel, even a delay of 5 seconds can result in 16% of visitors dropping off. Hubspot goes even further, suggesting that a 1-second delay can mean a 7% reduction in conversions.
It’s even worse for tradies like you.
Most tradies are “responsive” businesses. People call you to put out fires (not literally, of course). As such, time is of the essence!
Your customers want help, and they want it fast. If your website takes too long to load, they aren’t going to stick around.
2) Offer better customer experience
Don’t make your customers wait any longer than they have to!
You can offer better customer experience – before they even pick up the phone, mind you – through a fast loading website.
That’s because people aren’t always rational. While product A might have better specs, people might go for product B because it has a better package, a catchy jingle or it just “feels better” to them.
When it comes to websites for tradies, that can mean minor things like photos, colour selection and layout have a disproportionate effect on visitors’ decision… almost as much as the objective stuff like your services and reviews.
As we’re sure you’ve guessed, speed is one of these factors.
Think of your website as an extension of your tradie customer service. It should be informative and helpful – most of all, it should be fast, and give visitors the information they want with minimal delay.
By increasing your website’s speed, you’re supplying visitors with the information they want, faster. That directly translates to a better customer experience, and a higher chance that they’ll choose you to fix their problem.
3) Speed increases online visibility
If you’re here, you no doubt understand the importance of tradie SEO, and its power to bring in leads. In our opinion, SEO the most powerful tool when it comes to marketing for tradies.
What you might not know however is that SEO can be greatly affected by slow loading websites!
Google wants to give searchers what they’re looking for. While Google’s algorithm can’t read your mind, there is one thing that basically every internet user can agree is important: speed.
A while ago, Google started punishing websites with abnormally slow loading speed, with slow sites pushed down rankings in favour of quicker ones.
Increasing site speed: can it be done?
Yes, it can!
There are a couple of things that can be done both on front-facing parts of your site, as well as the back-end that can improve your speed.
Minimise web elements on your site
It’s important that websites for tradies use high-quality images to illustrate their services. However, it’s possible to have too much of a good thing!
In many cases, we find that slow loading is the result of images that are just too high resolution. All that extra detail takes time to load, which can slow down loading times.
Not to mention, you won’t always need that much detail. Do you really need a 4K image if all you’re going to be using it for is a small thumbnail shot?
One of the easiest ways to boost speed is to reduce the size of the images and other media files on your website.
Other tips include:
- Removing Flash – many older sites rely on Flash, which is slow (and no longer supported)
- Hosting videos on YouTube, instead of uploading them directly to your site
- Eliminating unnecessary plug-ins and site addons
Upgrade your website hosting
Like the name suggests, web hosting companies are responsible for keeping your tradie website up and running.
But what if your hosting isn’t very good?
When it comes to hosting, you get what you pay for. In our experience, many cheaper hosts rely on volume to make ends meet, while cutting corners elsewhere to bring down costs.
That combination of more sites crammed into less capable hardwear means slowdowns, which can affect your site and how long it takes to load.
And who knows what other corners they might be cutting?
Something as simple as changing your hosting package and company can help you increase your site speed almost immediately.
At iformat, we only choose reputable hosts for our clients. This allows us to focus on marketing for tradies, and not on struggling with load times. You’ll never have to worry about hosting dragging down your site speed.
Get the right developer
As any tradie knows, DIY repairs are one of the most common things you get called to fix.
Sometimes it’s using improper materials or techniques. In other cases, it’s because the “blood and guts” are all over the place, with pipes and wires that go nowhere, or which double up and cause problems.
The back-end of a website is no different in that regard. In fact, we even have our very own term for it: spaghetti code.
If the code that powers your website is an absolute mess, it can cause your site to slow down, as your web browser struggles to make sense of the website.
If you have coding skills of your own, you can go in and try fixing the issue yourself.
If you’re like most tradies however, you’ll want to enlist the help of a professional!
One of the first thing we do at iformat is perform an audit of clients’ websites. This allows us to identify issues, including problems with the code that may be causing show load speeds.
Marketing for tradies that works!
Improve your tradie website with iformat
Say you’re just getting started with your tradie website, and you’re worried about speed slowing you down.
That’s good! If you’re thinking about speed now, you’re already ahead of many of your fellow tradies.
And you can get even further ahead by getting in touch with iformat.
We specialise in marketing and building websites for tradies. We understand what it is that your customers want to hear, as well as how we can connect you with the jobs you want.
We guarantee that once we’re done, you’ll be left with a tradie website that:
- Loads fast
- “Sells” your tradie business
- Gets the phone ringing