Let’s imagine that you’ve decided to host a party to launch your home staging business. For days you work countless hours researching the very best location, carefully planning the food and décor. Thousands of thoughtful, elegant invitations have been sent out to the big event and as the date comes closer, you can’t wait to meet all of these new potential clients and you’re excited about how quickly your new business is going to take off.
But imagine if, when the big night arrives, the only people who show up are your parents and a few of your closest friends.
Can you even begin to fathom what a waste of time, energy and money that would have been? Not to mention the dashed expectations of a booming home staging business right out of the gate!
That’s exactly what’s happened if you’ve hired a website designer to build you a beautiful home staging website that nobody visits except for your friends, family and people who already know about you and your business.
It amazes me that in this day and age people still don’t understand the importance of a well-optimized website. You need to have a website not so you have a pretty place on the Internet to send your family members as proof you have a business, but so that people in your area who are in need of a home stager can find you.
It’s not easy getting your website found in the midst of the other millions of home staging websites out there and a website built with only beauty in mind is certainly not going to do anything to help your efforts.
One of the topics I’m most interested in continuing to learn more about is how search engines work and I devote a considerable amount of time into my education in this area. After all, that’s how you found my home staging courses! That’s also how 90% of my home staging clients find me when it’s time to stage their house – I’ve optimized my websites so that the people looking for what I have to offer find me!
I just finished visiting a Staging Diva Graduate’s website. It is truly lovely. The layout is very nice, the colors are great and the photography is stunning. I imagine she paid the designer who built it quite a lot but guess what?
The way the website is built, there is not one single thing within its infrastructure to make a search engine find it. It’s almost totally invisible to Google except for the footer at the bottom of every page of the site that says, “Site built by designersname” with a link taking viewers right back to the designer’s site!
The reason I know her website is invisible to search engines is because I took a few seconds to take a look at the code.
Yes…code. See, search engines don’t read websites the way you and I do. We’ll scan through the text and look at the pretty pictures but search engines can’t see that. All they can do to determine if it’s a site worth going to is dig into the code to see if it’s relevant to the phrase someone is searching for.
Don’t even consider hiring someone to build your home staging website before finding out if they know how to code the site so that it’s visible to Google. Make sure they don’t plan to use frames or flash which will actually make it harder for your site to be found.
Better yet, consider joining the Staging Diva Directory of Home Stagers. We build your web page for you, making sure your listing is found based on what I’ve learned over the years through SEO courses and building my own successful websites. I built my very first one in 1999 and I’ve continued to study the Internet as it has evolved ever since.
When you get a profile listing on the directory, you’ll also be certain anyone searching your city for a home stager finds you and I’ll even throw in a FREE full-color brochure when you join (valued at $300).
Home stagers, do you have a web design horror story you care to share? Or would you like to tell us a story of a client finding you from your listing on the directory? Please share by leaving a comment below!
Debra Gould, The Staging Diva®
President, Six Elements Inc. Home Staging
Debra Gould knows how to make money as a home stager and she developed the Staging Diva Home Staging Business Training Program to teach others how to earn a living doing something they love.