Kirsten Donaghey is a writer, an editor, and a writing coach living in Vienna. She got in touch with me through client referral and asked me to help her improve her website’s SEO health with a goal of increasing the number of inquiries received through her website. At the time of our first meeting Kirsten was already an established and well-known consultant in Vienna – she set up a local group for writers called Write Now and got projects through people, who came in contact with her personally. What Kirsten wanted more specifically was to receive more direct inquiries through her website’s contact form from people that were not necessarily based in Vienna, AT.
How to Get More Client Inquiries Via Your Website
The most important thing to investigate when wanting to increase business inquiries through an existing website is why are the inquiries not coming through in the first place?
- A very simplified checklist you should go through:
- How’s the website’s SEO health?
- How’s the on-site behaviour? How do the users arrive on the website and where do they drop off?
- When was the website last updated? Is there a clear indicator that the business is still active?
- Are the contact details easy to find?
- The basics: Is the contact form working? Was the email misspelt? Are messages arriving at the email destination?
- If anyone has ever made use of the online contact route, what convinced them to send the message? Was it a word-of-mouth recommendation that led them to the website or did they arrive exclusively via online channels?
Once I did my research and looked at website analysis, I was able to pinpoint the areas that needed improvement. Professional writing services were a new topic for me so I spent a big chunk of my worktime documenting good practices. Don’t be scared of getting inspired and even copying techniques from people that get a lot of business online, especially if you can compare strategies in different markets and in different languages. I saw many Polish brands employ marketing strategies that were old news in the US or the UK, yet it seemed they were extremely effective on the Polish virtual marketplace. Similarly, Austria-based native English speakers working as writers, copywriters, ghostwriters, and editors emphasized different selling points on their websites.
I have to add that when you are striking out internationally with certain consulting services, you will have to differentiate yourself from sites such as Fiverr or Upwork, online marketplaces for freelance services. Their main USP is the low cost of hiring freelancers internationally and they are raking in top SERP positions for certain queries.
Kirsten’s website is built on Jimdo. As we discussed the new online presence strategy, she decided to stick with that CMS because it’s quite simple to navigate. I changed the template to one, which had the technical functionalities I recommended.
When redoing a website to improve search visibility, it’s important to structure it accordingly. This is how you implement the research you had done in the first phase of analysing a website’s health and looking up good practices. The new page topography was also dictated by a thorough local keyword search, competitor benchmarking and the priority of services as assigned by Kirsten.
Finally, taking into consideration the entirety of the research I had done, I proposed the new wireframe, content and provided SEO writing content guidelines. The latter included tone of voice tips as well as an editorial calendar to implement in the months after the website got its redesign – SEO auditing and fixing alone won’t help if you don’t have content. The entire redesign and implementation took 4 months.
Screenshots of the website before redesign
The new website had a watercolour theme because Kirsten specifically requested it. See below for screenshots.