How to Create a Great Manufacturing Website in 2020
As a manufacturing company, you need a website that clearly exhibits your innovation and technological expertise to inspire prospects to contact to your sales team. Whether you’re designing a new website or making user-focused updates to your existing site, these tips will help you turn your manufacturing website into a powerful marketing tool.
Convey a Strong Manufacturing Brand Image
Having a strong, updated website can solidify your brand impression and quickly communicate the health and quality of your company. That is true in any field, but especially so in technical industries, when an outdated, poorly functioning website can reflect negatively on the technical expertise of your company.
Your website is often the initial point of contact with a customer, so it needs to make a good first impression in three main areas: looks, content, and function.
In terms of appearance, a simple, streamlined, aesthetically pleasing website design makes your business look more professional than a site that is cluttered and difficult to navigate.
For content, make sure your site clearly explains what your company does, including experience, skills, and technological proficiency.
In terms of function, it's crucial that the site work seamlessly, not only to give your site visitors a good user experience, but to instill confidence in your ability to build things that work as they're supposed to.
5 things your manufacturing website needs for a strong brand:
- A clean and professional logo
- A modern layout that is visually appealing and on-brand
- Large, captivating imagery
- Value-based messaging regarding your services
- Logos for awards, certificates, partners, or associations
Make it Easy for Site Visitors to Find What They're Looking For
Your website visitors should be able to browse your capabilities or search for a product easily. For capability and service-based manufacturers, this means easily-found service pages that are well-written and organized logically by application, industry, or material.
Manufacturing capability pages should include:
- Industries served
- Drawing formats accepted
If your company is product-based, make sure your product categories are clearly defined and thoughtfully organized, and offer the ability to quickly drill down to see more specific options.
If you have a large selection of products, be sure they can easily be searched by keyword, part number/SKU, or other key factors.
Speak to Your Target Audience
When a prospect is vetting multiple manufacturing companies, thoughtful and well-written content that is specifically aimed at your target audience will help your website stand out from the competition.
When developing content for your website, always keep your target customer or buyer persona in mind and include information that helps them achieve their goals.
For example, if engineers are your prime audience, what details will help them understand they’ve found what they’re looking for? If purchasing managers are the ones browsing your website, how can you ‘keyword match’ their spec sheet to ensure the sale?
Once you've identified your audience(s), make sure you generate content that speaks to their needs, including key information such as turnaround times, customer rejection rates, processing accuracy, product quality, lead times, shipping, etc.
Include Customer Success Stories
One of the best ways to show potential customers how they can benefit from your products is by showing how existing or past customers have used your manufacturing services to their advantage.
4 ways to showcase your past work on your manufacturing website:
- Case studies showing how you solved a particular challenge for a customer
- Customer testimonials, in either written or video form
- Photos or videos of your products in action
- Reviews from customers, both on your own site and on third-party platforms
Having this type of content on your site will provide valuable confirmation of the quality of your work.
Make it Easy to Contact You
Once a prospect has read through your material, the next step is to contact your sales team. Make this process simple by having strategic calls-to-action on each page. Use action words like “Request a Quote” “Submit a Request” or “Order Replacement Part” to fully communicate what the user will experience next.
Optimize your Contact/RFQ forms for usability:
- Include a place for attaching PDFs for purchase orders or blueprints.
- If there is standard information you need to generate a quote, ask for it in the form, but don’t make it required in case they don’t know.
- Remember that in general, shorter forms are more likely to be filled out.
- Include a thank you page (for marketing tracking) and a thank you email.
Don’t forget that some people prefer to talk things through with a real human. Make sure your header and footer have a contact phone number, especially on mobile devices.
Here at Web Solutions, one of our specialties is developing websites and creating marketing plans for clients in the manufacturing (or distribution) industry. If it's time to redesign your manufacturing website, contact us to talk with our strategic team.