How to design a consulting website
A well-designed website is essential for any consulting business looking to establish its online presence and attract new clients. Your website is often the first impression potential customers will have of your business, so it’s important to get it right.
In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk through the key steps and considerations when designing an effective consulting website that converts visitors into leads and customers.
Design a consulting website
Your consulting website is often the first impression and main touchpoint for reaching potential new clients online. That’s why investing time into getting the website design right is so critical.
Choose the Right Domain Name
Your domain name is one of the first things potential customers will notice, so pick one that’s short, easy to remember, and contains your most important keywords. For a consulting business, including your area of expertise in the domain name can help.
Make sure the .com version is available and opt for that if possible. Avoid confusing domains or extra words that don’t add value.
Select a Mobile-Friendly Template
With the majority of website traffic now coming from mobile devices, a responsive template that adapts to different screen sizes is essential. This will ensure visitors have a smooth experience regardless of how they access your site.
Look for templating sites and themes designed specifically for consultants and professional service providers. They will have all the pages and layouts you need pre-built, allowing you to customize it with your own branding, content, and images.
Some popular templates/themes for consulting websites include:
- HubSpot’s Agency and Professional Services Templates
- WordPress themes like Consulting by ThemeForest
Craft an Impactful Homepage
Your homepage is prime real estate and needs to quickly communicate who you are, what you do, and why visitors should hire you. Limit the text and focus on your value proposition.
Some elements that are effective on consulting homepages:
- A memorable tagline or slogan
- A brief overview video introducing the business
- Logos of past clients or companies you’ve worked with
- Testimonials from satisfied customers
- A contact form to collect leads
- Links to high-value content like case studies
The homepage should be uncluttered while featuring the strongest elements of your brand. It should only take a few seconds for visitors to understand your consulting focus and expertise.
Optimize with Key Pages
Beyond the homepage, every consulting website needs a few other key pages to round out the customer journey. These include:
About Page: Go in-depth about your consulting firm, founders, experience, mission, and team. Help visitors get to know your business on a deeper level.
Services Page: Feature your various service offerings and areas of specialty. Break down each offering into details of what it includes.
Case Studies or Portfolio Page: Show specific examples of your past consulting projects with real data and results.
Testimonials Page: Display positive client reviews and feedback that build credibility.
Blog or Resources Page: Share your expertise through consulting articles, guides, ebooks, and other valuable content.
Contact Page: Make it easy for visitors to get in touch by including phone numbers, email addresses, a contact form, and office location/map if applicable.
Optimize for SEO
Search engine optimization (SEO) helps potential customers find your website when searching for related consulting terms. To maximize your SEO:
- Research keywords prospective clients would use to find you and integrate them naturally into your copy. Tools like Google Keyword Planner can help generate keyword ideas.
- Include keywords in page titles, headers, image alt text, meta descriptions, and URL slugs.
- Create content and blog posts focused on specific keywords and questions your ideal customers have.
- Get backlinks from industry websites, directories, and other relevant sites to improve domain authority.
- Use schema markup so search engines can better understand your content.
SEO is an ongoing process, but optimizing your consulting website from the start will improve findability. Monitor keyword rankings and traffic sources to see what’s working.
Make it Scannable for Visitors
Consulting websites need to communicate key information quickly. Follow principles of effective web writing and design by:
- Breaking up large blocks of text with subheaders and bullet points
- Using short paragraphs focused on one main idea each
- Highlighting key information with bold or colored text
- Including plenty of white space between elements
- Using numbered or bulleted lists for service offerings, processes, tips, etc.
By making your site scannable with clear hierarchies, visitors can easily skim and find the most important information.
Enable Easy Lead Capture
To generate new business, consulting websites need clear calls-to-action (CTAs) to capture leads. This includes:
- Email signup forms, popups, or bars to collect emails for your newsletter or other content offers
- Contact forms on each page to encourage inquiries
- Clickable buttons, chat widgets, or phone numbers that enable instant contact
- Links to book a consultation call directly on your calendar
- CTAs that stand out with contrasting colors and sizes
By strategically placing CTAs above the fold and throughout your site’s pages, it’s easy for visitors to take the next step and contact you.
Showcase Your Personality
While informative content is crucial, consulting websites should also reflect the brand’s personality, values, and “vibe.”
Ways to achieve this:
- Choose an appealing color palette and fonts that communicate your style.
- Incorporate custom illustrations or graphic elements.
- Feature photos of your team, office, and work environment.
- Share about your talents, passions, or hobbies beyond consulting.
- Use an authentic, approachable tone when writing content.
- Develop a unique style for titles, headers, and subheads.
Finding small ways to showcase what makes your consulting firm special makes for a memorable website that visitors will enjoy exploring and remember.
Choose the Right Platform
Your website needs a platform that’s easy to update regularly. Some top options for consulting sites include:
WordPress: The most popular CMS, WordPress offers thousands of templates, plugins, and customization options. Ideal for sites run in-house.
Squarespace: An all-in-one solution with beautiful templates. Easy to set up and manage.
Wix: Drag-and-drop builder with great flexibility. Another user-friendly all-in-one option.
Webflow: More advanced than other DIY site builders. Allows extensive customization and animations.
A professional web developer can also build and customize sites on these platforms for you. Consider your budget, technical abilities, and long-term needs when choosing.
Test and Refine the Site
Before officially launching a new consulting website, be sure to:
- Thoroughly test forms, pages, and features across devices. Fix any bugs.
- Ask others to review the site for any confusing areas or broken elements.
- Use a tool like Google Analytics to set up tracking and monitor performance.
- Soft launch the site to a small test audience first before full public launch.
- Review analytics after launch to see how visitors navigate the site and optimize accordingly.
- Continuously add fresh content, case studies, and other improvements to the site over time.
Following these steps will help you identify and resolve any issues while also establishing a process for continual optimization after launch.
Promote and Maintain Your Consulting Website
Launching your new website is only half the battle – you also need to promote it and maintain it over the long term. Some effective strategies include:
- Add a link to your site in your consulting business email signature.
- Create an announcement about the new website on your company LinkedIn and social media.
- Run Google and social media ads targeted to your ideal audience.
- Develop a content strategy, posting blogs, videos, etc. regularly to attract organic traffic.
- Participate in relevant online communities, forums, and groups to generate referral traffic.
- Continuously add new case studies, testimonials, and examples of your latest work.
- Keep the design, content, and user experience fresh and up-to-date.
By actively promoting and maintaining it, your consulting website will pay dividends for years to come as a lead generation tool and hub for all your digital marketing efforts.
Frequently Asked Question
1. What is the importance of having a website for my consulting business?
A website serves as your online presence and can help you reach a wider audience, showcase your expertise, and attract potential clients.
2. Do I need to hire a professional web designer for my consulting website?
While you can create a website yourself, hiring a professional designer ensures a polished and effective online presence that aligns with your brand and goals.
3. How do I choose the right domain name for my consulting website?
Select a domain name that is relevant to your consulting niche, easy to remember, and represents your brand. Avoid long or complicated domain names.
4. What content should I include on my consulting website?
Include an about page, services offered, client testimonials, a blog or resources section, and contact information. Tailor the content to showcase your expertise.
5. How can I make my consulting website mobile-friendly?
Choose a responsive website design, optimize images and videos for mobile, and test your site on different devices to ensure it functions well on smartphones and tablets.
6. What are the best practices for SEO on a consulting website?
Conduct keyword research, optimize meta tags and headings, create high-quality, relevant content, and build backlinks to improve your website’s search engine visibility.
7. Should I include a blog on my consulting website?
Yes, a blog can help establish your authority in your consulting niche, attract organic traffic, and provide valuable resources for your audience.
8. How can I incorporate client testimonials effectively on my website?
Showcase client testimonials on a dedicated page or strategically place them throughout your site. Use real names and photos to build trust.
9. What security measures should I take for my consulting website?
Invest in SSL encryption, regularly update software and plugins, use strong passwords, and consider a website firewall to protect against cyber threats.
10. How do I track the performance of my consulting website?
Use web analytics tools like Google Analytics to monitor traffic, user behavior, and conversion rates. Adjust your strategy based on the data you collect.
Creating a high-converting consulting website takes strategic planning and execution across design, content, user experience, and technical factors. Invest time upfront in optimizing these website fundamentals, tailoring them to your specific audience and consulting niche.
The result will be an online presence that expertly showcases your business, engages visitors, and helps win new consulting clients. With this guide, you have an overview of the key ingredients for website success – now it’s time to put them into action.