The million dollar question asked by both new and established web hosts: how do I find and acquire more clients?
Hosting is much like any other business in which it requires hard work and constant effort. Here are some tried and true methods to get new clients without spending money on advertising.
User Friendly Website and Mobile Design
The main purpose of your website is to highlight your products and make it simple to convert viewers into clients. Look at your website through the eyes of the viewer and make sure the design and navigation are optimized toward improving sales. The prices should be crystal clear; don’t get off on the wrong foot with your clients by including hidden fees.
Make your website look professional. A basic looking WordPress site is not going to stand against your competitors. Check out a site like ThemeForest for an unique theme that is clean and responsive so it looks great on any device.
More people will be checking your site on mobile devices than ever before. Do you know what your site looks like on an iPad mini or an HTC One? A responsive theme ensures the same viewing experience on all platforms. Go here to see what your site looks elsewhere.
Spelling and punctuation mistakes on your site makes you look like an amateur, so triple check your grammar and have someone else proofread it.
Find Your Niche
You can’t compete with the giant, established web hosts when it comes to cheap pricing and variety of hosting products. Your best bet may be attacking a niche market so you can try and stand out from the rest. By offering niche services, you can quickly climb up the Google rankings due to less competition. Make what you do a little different than other web hosts to give people a reason to choose you.
Create an Affiliate Program
If you haven’t already, the time is now to create a competitive referral service that will allow your current clients to sell your business for you. Referrals are great for new business and will help the company growth. Offer your customers money, free service, or a giant coupon to thank and entice them for their recommendations.
Promote on Relevant Forums
Talking to like-minded individuals on forums is a great and free way to promote yourself and your business. Web Hosting Talk is the largest, most influential web hosting forum on the Internet. Last month, there was a moment where 18,000 people were on the forums at the same time. That’s a lot of relevant potential clients all in one place. Be active on WHT and interact with peers to learn the ins and outs of the industry.
Blogging & Social Media
Potential customers, as well as current customers can keep up with what is going on with your company, your industry and your product or service. Be sure to make it easy to find your blog from the homepage. Often, high profile bloggers invite guest bloggers to add to their blog so always be ready with a few good ideas.
Create a timely, relevant blog and spread it all around the big four social platforms: send a tweet on Twitter, share with your followers on Facebook, make an update to your peers on LinkedIn, and post a video or picture on Instagram.
Advertising in your local area is old school tactics, but they still work. Most areas have networking events that allow you to meet people with similar goals and exchange information. These can include charity events, social groups, church groups, rotary meetings and industry events.
Networking locally can keep you in touch with other movers and shakers who can help your business grow through word-of-mouth. Also you may become regarded as the go-to technical person in your local circles, which will yield selling opportunities.
Referrals and Testimonials
What’s the next step after you have some happy clients? Testimonials! Make sure the world knows your clients enjoy being under your roof. Ask your client for a referral to put on your website and on hosting forums. Word-of-mouth marketing is a great way to convince new clients to hop aboard.
It takes time to build a solid reputation and credibility, but the dominos begin to fall once you put in enough time. Where have you noticed success in finding clients? Let us know in the comments below.
This article was written by HostDime’s Director of Marketing Jared Smith.
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