Creating a Community for Your Site or Company
The best customers are those that continue to come back to your company time and time again for products and services. If you offer services, there is nothing more beneficial than the client coming back requesting the same service again. Return business is the best business. However, creating that sort of business can be difficult, especially on the Internet. There isn’t as much face to face interaction that can make a person feel as if they are special. And that makes it difficult to persuade a client to become a return client.
However, just because you can’t have that face to face interaction doesn’t mean you can’t incorporate community on your site to get the customers interested.
The following are a series of ways in which you can implement community on your site:
+ Add a blog to the site. The blog can be updated on a semi-regular basis with new information pertaining to your niche. For example, if you are a carpenter, you could write a new article once a week on how to do a different home improvement project. It’s free information, but it gives the clients a way to feel as if you’re genuinely interested in their success.
+ Sign up to Twitter.com. Create an account and start using it to post updates on your site and to also answer client’s customers. As you help clients, more people will start following.
+ Hold a contest on your blog. There is no way to get people more interested in coming back to the site than to hold a contest. However, contests are short term, so don’t rely on them.
+ Encourage comments on your blog and then e-mail first time commentators personally. This e-mail is a fantastic way of showing them that you are interested in what they have to say and it will bring them back.
+ Include a way for them to subscribe to the site. This can be through a RSS feed or through a newsletter. However, it is important to have this added because it gives readers the chance to come back.
These are all methods in which people can begin joining the community of your site. While it might seem so basic, these little changes can really develop a sense of community for the visitors. And that tiny bit of community can turn a first time visitor into a member of the site or, more importantly, a returning visitor into a consistent customer. While getting new customers is always important, keeping old customers means you’ve got a solid base to grow from. A community is a great way to ensure those people keep coming back.