If you’re building a home staging website, there are 10 “must have” web pages all home stagers should include. I explain them here step-by-step to help you create your home staging website or home staging blog.
1. Home Page
Here’s where you’ll talk about what home staging is and what markets you serve. Don’t forget to include your state or province. Remember website visitors come from all over the world and many city names are common between different states or provinces.
You must write your own copy for this page or hire someone to do it for you.
It’s plagiarism and copyright infringement to copy web content from someone else’s website and put it onto your own, unless you do so with their permission and you quote them. Taking what they have and changing an occasional word is still copyright infringement!
Here’s where you’ll include portfolio-worthy before and after photos of homes you have staged or decorated. DO NOT USE STOCK PHOTOS as this practice misleads potential customers and will destroy your credibility if you get caught passing off someone else’s work as your own.
If you haven’t had a paying client yet, shoot photos in your home or that of a friend if you’ve decorated it. The key here is that if you’re selling your decorating or staging talent, the photos must represent your own work.
3. About Us
This is one of your most important pages on your website because studies have shown it’s the most visited after your home page.
Here’s where you’ll include a photo of you and a profile of why you’re great at what you do, any experience you want to share, testimonials from a few clients.
Don’t include a photo of you holding your child, it’s not relevant to the task of promoting yourself as a professional home stager and will in fact work against you.
The photo of you is important because people hire people and they want to see who you are before phoning or emailing you. Remember that how well your website encourages people to contact you is highly dependent on how well you write about who you are and what you do.
If the copy isn’t compelling, prospects won’t bother to call or email you.
4. Contact Us
Don’t forget to make it easy for people to contact you. Include a phone number and email address (though to decrease spam you might want to include a “contact us” form that users complete rather than publishing your actual email address).
It’s important to have a mailing address as well, but don’t put your home address on a website. Use a PO box or mail forwarding service instead.
It’s a great idea to sprinkle testimonials around your website, but you should also have a page devoted exclusively to them.
Testimonials have much greater weight and credibility if they include full names at a minimum. Also nice are photos, city and company names (if applicable).
Here’s where you’ll describe what you do and how. Some stagers like to include their rates on this page, though I advise against this practice for a number of reasons I share with my students.
You must write your own text or hire someone to write it for you. It’s plagiarism to copy web content from someone else’s website and put it onto your own.
Here’s where you’ll include any mentions of you in newspapers, magazines, TV and radio. You can also include links to any website you are on. If you haven’t been featured in any media yet, you can include links to stories about home staging to help educate your audience. But don’t try and pretend you’re in the story if you aren’t.
It makes me crazy when I see all these stagers slapping an “As seen on HGTV” logo on their pages even though they’ve never been on HGTV. What they mean is that “home staging” has been on HGTV but they don’t say that and deliberately mislead people. This will back fire.
8. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Because home staging is a new concept to many people, it’s not a bad idea to include a FAQ page. Think about what your prospective clients and real estate agents would want to know about home staging in general and you in particular.
9. Confirmation or Thank You
If you’re asking people to sign up for something, complete a form or order something, after they do so they should “land” on a confirmation or thank you page so that they know the action they took went through.
If you’ll be collecting ANY information from prospective customers, you need to include information on how that information will be used, shared and protected.
Now, these 10 pages are just a beginning, you’ll add others as you have more material. Remember a website is a bit like having a hungry dragon living in the basement. Now that he’s there, you have to keep feeding him. It’s important to constantly update your site with fresh content so that visitors will keep coming back and so that the search engines will rank your site.
To learn more about how to get great home staging photos, write a compelling profile and how to get the right kind of testimonials, check out the Staging Diva Ultimate Portfolio Guide: Winning Clients with the Perfect Home Staging Portfolio.
If you’ve already got a home staging website and it’s not working for you to build your home staging business, I hope these tips have helped.I also offer a Home Staging Website CheckUp Service.
Let me know in the comment section below any additional questions you may have on this topic so I can write follow up articles.
Internationally recognized home staging expert Debra Gould is president of Six Elements and creator of the Staging Diva Home Staging Business Training Program with thousands of students worldwide. She is the author of 5 guides for home stagers. Debra also offers a Directory of Home Stagers to help home stagers who don’t want to build their own website.