Everything you wanted to know about your website - By Aaron
So you have started your group and now you need to know how to go about getting a home on the Internet.
Most people do not realize that having a professional, eye catching website can boost your prospective client traffic. Think about it, if you were having a problem with the paranormal in your own home, you are already skittish about the situation to begin with. The last thing you want to see when looking for someone to help you is gaudy graphics, blood and gore dripping off of their website along with skulls and cross bones everywhere. You are serious about your problem! You want a serious group of individuals who display an aura of professionalism when inviting them into your home.
They have been in business for over 10 years freelancing and now recently incorporated. Blitz Productions has everything you need from graphic services, website creation and SEO (search engine optimization), web hosting, domain names and more! VERY AFFORDABLE! Take our website for example, they created the pages you are viewing now.
Clients want to feel comfortable with you when contacting you and your website should provide a feeling of security and knowledge. You want information about your group, how you got started, who your group members are, how you go about conducting the investigation process and more. Just putting up a webpage that says, "have a problem, contact us" is not going to get you anywhere. You also want a website that tells people you've got experience in what you do. Writing, professionally, about your previous investigations and giving some client testimonials will help. Be accurate in what you say. If it didn't happen, then don't write about it. The last thing a client wants to hear is that you exaggerated a situation to make it look better than it really was. This doesn't help you and it definitely does not help your clients.
Hold your clients trust. If they have asked you not to write about a situation or post evidence for personal reasons, then abide by their wishes. You don't want a lawsuit on your hands and more often then not a judge will side with the other guy if you've plastered something on the Internet that they said you couldn't. It may have very well been the best piece of evidence you have ever caught, is it worth your house or livelihood to post about it?
Search engines can be your best friends. SEO is the art of optimizing your webpage to be picked up by search engines and get ranked in the process. A web design company can help you achieve that. If all you put on your website is pictures and nothing else, you will never be found by a search engine. You should be thinking about short and to the point keywords about your group. Where are you located? What services do you offer and more? The design company will input this stuff into your website so that places like Google, Yahoo and MSN can pick up on those keywords and display your website to people who are looking for help.
Word of mouth is going to be your best asset. Getting out there and networking with other groups or people who hold the same interests will get your name out there the fastest. You can advertise your group if you want. The most popular form of this is PPC (pay per click) advertising. This is where you sign up with a set amount of money and your advertisement is put into rotation based on how much you are willing to pay each time someone clicks it. This has been found to be not effective though. You end up paying more money than you want to and it doesn't generate much traffic to your website. Unless you have tens of thousands of dollars to throw into this, steer clear of it and do more networking instead. People who are having issues generally go to their friends and family first before looking for outside help. Who knows, you may have networked with one of those family members and they can in turn refer you to the other family in need. People trust those close to them and if the person they trust, trusts you, then you are golden.
In the end, you want to display professionalism, quality and a sincere want to help people. Lets face it, you got into paranormal for a reason and whom did you turn to when you needed help? Did you skip over those sites with the creepy Friday the 13th music or the skulls that kind of freaked you out? If you want to change the image of paranormal you need to do so by starting with yourselves. Paranormal is still thought of to be taboo by many people. It doesn't help our cause much if you are portraying an image that gives them a reason to think it's still taboo.
Best of luck in your endeavors!