You’ve likely visited many website looking for a local gym or martial arts school. However, you may not have given much thought into how or why the website was designed the way it was. Like most web visitors, your main concern was likely what the site looked like, good or bad. You also noticed whether it was easy to find the information you were looking for. While these factors are important, they won’t single-handily grow your business. If you’re a business owner looking to get more local members from your website, you need a website that turns local visitors into members AND looks good. Luckily, we’ve got some great tips to help you get started.
6 Tips to Get More Local Members from Your Website
It’s easy for business owners to get distracted by all the fine details that go into web design. In order to help you get started and focus on the things that matter most when it comes to your website and turning visitors into customer, we’ve put together a list of 6 important tips to help you get more local members from your website. This list of tips isn’t all-inclusive, but it will give you a great start compared to your local competitors that aren’t using their website as the lead generation machine that it’s meant to be.
Pro Tip: The tips here are usable for any type of local member-based business with a website; from karate, MMA, and martial arts schools to gyms, yoga studios, ballet and dance studios, CrossFit gyms, etc.
1. Have a Responsive Website
With mobile sales surpassing desktop sales in every way, it’s no longer a choice to have a responsive website. All local businesses should now have a responsive website, which means the site responds to the size of the browser being used so it can be easily viewed from any device – desktops, tablets, smartphones, etc. In fact, having a responsive design is so important that Google is favoring websites that offer this feature for their visitors. Again, it’s a must for all local businesses.
When it comes to martial arts website features, you may wonder why a responsive design, specifically, is important to you. Consider this, if a parent of one of the your members needs to find out when class is while they’re on the go, how do you think they will access the online schedule?
You guessed it, on their phone.
If you don’t have a responsive design, the parent will find it difficult to find the information they need. Responsive designs eliminate the need for a user to scroll left and right and zoom in and out to read relevant information. The info presented is done so in a clean, streamlined manner, making it easy to use and read.
2. Use the “About Us” Page
The “About Us” page is a primary connection point for visitors. Surprisingly, the “About Us” page is often the most visited on most websites, besides the homepage. When visiting the “About Us” page, visitors are hoping to find out more about you, your business and – most importantly – what you can do for them. If a parent isn’t sure what type of martial arts is right for their child, your website should help persuade them to choose your school. “About Us” page visitors should be able to meet the owners and instructors on the page, and learn more about your school. This page is the best place to share the who, what, where, when, and how’s for your business. However, that’s not the only reason to create an “About Us” page.
As you’re educating visitors about your business, and earning their trust, it’s a great time to encourage the visitors to take action (see Step 3). This action can be an “opt-in” offer, ability to view your class schedule, or sign up for a free class. Whatever action you want online visitors to take should be included on the “About Us” page.
Making the most of your membership-based business’s website requires you to optimize your “About Us” page for conversions.
3. Create an Opt-In Offer
Unless your web visitors call you, you’re not going to know anything about them. You can’t collect a visitors name, email address, or phone number unless they willing share that information with you. Creating an opt-in offer allows you to offer something of high value to your visitors in exchange for their information – their email address at the least, and hopefully their name and phone, as well.
This opt-in offer will help you grow your list of local leads that are interested in your business but may not be ready to pick up the phone and call you yet. With an opt-in offer, you can identify these visitors as “potential members” and continue to market to them until they finally contact you directly.
When you’re thinking about website features to include in your website, having an opt-in offer should be a top priority. Below are some opt-in offer ideas to help you get started:
· Opt-in to access to a coupon or special offer.
· Opt-in to get a free eBook or other valuable information.
· Opt-in to enter into a contest or giveaway.
· Opt-in to access members-only information, pricing, etc.
Adding a great opt-in offer will help you start getting more members from your website.
4. Publish Your Class Schedule
When you run a martial arts business, or any other type of member-based business, having an easy-to-access schedule online is a great convenience for your members. It’s certainly much easier and faster to edit and update than printed schedules. An online class schedule also allows potential members to find out if training times work with their schedule. Some experts argue that having the class schedule available results in less “inquiries” from potential members. However, we’ve found that it actually results in higher-quality inquiries since potential members now have more of the information they’re looking for. Posting your schedule on your website also keeps steady traffic coming to your site as your members come to look at updated class times. This allows you the opportunity to market new offers and information to them while they’re on the site viewing the schedule.
5. Content is King – Create a Blog
You’ve likely heard the expression “content is king.” It’s no secret that high-quality, informative, and well-written content is appealing to visitors. This type of content also appeals to search engines like Google. When you take the time to create truly epic content, search engines – and customers – take notice.
The type of content you create is not the only factor that’s important. You need to create content on a consistent basis for it to make a difference and boost your website’s search engine optimization (SEO). You have to create quality content that’s serves your members if you want any chance at ranking high in Google.
Written content isn’t the only way to reach visitors. A new, effective way to create content is with videos. In fact, most people would rather spend some time watching a video, than reading text content. Take some time to create some custom gym or martial arts-related videos that will provide information about your business, show a benefit of what you offer, or provide greater insight into your programs.
6. Testimonials, Reviews, and Other Words of Praise
Did you know that a large number of consumers seek advice from other consumers prior to making a purchase like a gym membership? As a result, it’s a great idea to post testimonials, reviews, or other words of praise from real members on your site for visitors to see. It’s also a good idea to ask your current and past members to post reviews on third party sites like Yelp and Google, and social media channels. Reviews on third party sites make it easy for potential members to find your business and reviews when searching online for your services. Reviews and testimonials from current and past members can become a great asset and selling point as your business grows.
There’s no question that thinking about website features can be a bit overwhelming. If you’re feeling overwhelmed with all the options and internet marketing jargon, feel free to contact us for a free consultation. Our team at Conversion Strategies offers internet marketing services for a variety of member-based businesses, including CrossFit gyms, martial arts studios, dance and ballet schools, and much more. We understand the nuances of member-based businesses and how to create a website that meets your members’ needs AND helps you attract more local members.
Our goal is to help you grow your business. How can we help you?