Websites have evolved tremendously over the last ten years. There are microsites, opt-in sites, landing pages, sales pages, membership sites, e-commerce sites, educational portals, the list goes on. Many people call these ‘online digital marketing strategies’. This is just a long fancy term. Don’t let these ‘digital strategists’ confuse you. They are all just different forms of websites.
So how do you, as a small business owner, know which ‘website’ is right for your business?
I’ve broken down the three most useful sites for small business owners: landing pages, sales pages, and memberships sites. What are they, what’s their purpose, and how can each one best serve your business?
#1 Landing Page
// synonyms: opt-in page, lead capture page, lead page
What is a landing page?
A landing page is a stand-alone web page that captures a person’s email address and name in exchange for a free resource. This resource could be an e-book, a webinar, a checklist, a guidebook, a tutorial, etc.
What’s the purpose of a landing page?
The sole purpose of a landing page is to offer a resource to help someone. The by-product of this act of service is capturing a person’s contact information to grow your lead list (so you can be of more service).
Criteria of a landing page
- An email marketing service (ie mailchimp, constant contact, etc.)
- A form that captures an email address and name
- A compelling and useful free resource
- No distractions or other links on the page
Is a landing page right for your business?
Whether you are a new business or have been in the game for a while, a landing page is great for everyone. Why? A landing page is the perfect platform to showcase your expertise and help others at the same time.
The number one key to a successful landing page is your free resource. This resource must be so helpful that someone is willing to exchange their personal information with you. So, spend time on this offer, do your research. What solutions do you have to other people’s pain and problems?
#2 Sales Pages
// synonyms: microsite
What is a sales page?
A sales page is a stand-alone web page that outlines your signature service, e-course, program, product, event etc. A sale page is for one-single-offer, not a list of all your services.
What’s the purpose of a sales page?
Say you have of a summer fitness program, a sales page focuses on promoting this single program – the benefits, the details, the price, testimonials (ie how you’ve helped others in the past) and a gateway for someone to sign up and pay for your program.
Criteria of a sales page
- A very clear understanding of your service offering
- A separate domain
- Compelling written copy
- Call to Action buttons
- Payment portal
Is a sales page right for your business?
If you have a signature service, an online or offline program, or a product then having a sales page is an important page to develop. A stand-alone page will not only create clarity in your service, but it will also be provide a gateway for someone to learn more about how your service can help them.
#3 Membership Sites
// synonyms: e-course, online program, online learning center
What is a membership site?
A membership site is an online platform where (paid) members get exclusive, private access to content.
What’s the purpose of a membership site?
A membership site is a great way for a small business owners to share content, or teach a course or program to a larger online audience and to create a monthly revenue stream.
Criteria of a membership site
- Clear vision of your online program (if your confused about your service, other people will be confused too)
- Membership software
- Email Marketing System
- Subscription-based Payment Portal
- A sales page for potential members to join your membership
- Marketing plan
- A large, existing and active fan base/followers
Is a membership site right for your business?
A membership site is perfect for the small business owner who doesn’t have enough hours in the day to serve the demands of one-on-one client sessions. With a membership site you can serve more people at one time.
A membership site is perfect if you have a popular service that you can turn into an online course.
A membership site is a great platform if you teach and want to connect with a larger, national or global audience.
Not recommended for brand new business owners who don’t have an active social media following.
How do you choose the right ‘website’ for your business?
Where are you in the stage of your business?
- Are you brand new small business owner with a little budget, but wanting to showcase your expertise and grow a potential client base? Then a landing page is perfect for you!
- Are you a seasoned entrepreneur with a huge social media following and feeling spread too thin, unable to serve all your clients. Then shifting your services to a membership site would be a great solution.
- Do you have offer a package service offering, then a sales page is a perfect way to showcase your service and make the sale.
Remember we are here to serve at our highest potential. Get out there and make your mark on the world 🙂