What’s on your website? Are there pretty pictures of your products? Info about the person who owns the business and their staff? Testimonials from happy customers/clients? State-of-the-art demonstration videos? A link to a lecture you presented last year?

Just a cursory look at a handful of the millions and millions of live sites on the web shows a variety of info, ranging from pure fluff that takes up space to important facts that help customers decide whether they want to work with that particular company.

Now, take a close look at your website and consider whether you’re giving your customers what they need and desire rather than just trying to sell them your product or service. Are you educating your customers or doing the minimum necessary to keep them on your site, hoping they eventually take action?

Educating through content on your website

A few weeks ago, we talked about content marketing. Creating content is much more than just talking about yourself and your accomplishments. Instead, you should use your content to educate your audience and help them learn or grow.

There are a variety of ways to educate through content. You can offer practical knowledge by posting how-tos or tutorials. You might even take deep dives into specific topics related to your business. This might include information about industry trends or something else your customers may need to learn by browsing your products or services. You can help them solve their problems via your content or even help them learn from your mistakes by talking about past challenges.

Creating educational content like this allows you to obtain a reputation as a helpful resource rather than just a website/business pushing products. Customers respect industry leaders who can speak authoritatively on a variety of issues and who are willing to be a little vulnerable in the process. This allows your audience to forge a connection to you that is unique.

Marketing materials vs. educational materials

Customer education is a real issue when it comes to what’s on the internet because it’s often difficult to ascertain what’s trustworthy vs. what’s there to entice you to buy. For example, you can find thousands and thousands of pages of content about dietary supplements on the web, ranging from the stone-cold truth to claims that are about as far-fetched as they come. The latter is written with no other intent than to sell these products, which don’t likely do what they claim to do. But, it’s challenging for customers to sift through all the information and determine what’s real and what’s not.

According to marketing experts Andreas Eisingerich and Simon Bell of Sloan Review, “Efforts to enhance customers’ service knowledge and provide them with the skills and abilities to use critical information can help companies differentiate their service offerings and provide a strong foundation on which to build trusting relationships with customers.”

In short, that means the best customers are informed and empowered, which allows them to be confident in their decisions. Whereas some companies believe that ignorance on the part of their customers is okay, studies show that to be untrue. The more educated they are – thanks to your efforts – the more satisfied they’ll be with their choices and their relationship with your business.

Take advantage of “thought leaders.”

Experts also suggest tying your educational content to “thought leaders” in your industry. Thought leaders are those whose views on a subject are considered influential or authoritative. They are the go-to people in their field. For example, if your business is electric cars, chances are you would consider Elon Musk a thought leader in your industry.

You can eventually become a thought leader, but until you are, offer education from more well-known individuals in your industry. These thought leaders already have the general public’s attention, and it could benefit you to spread some learning through them.

Consult with website – building professionals.

The experts at Watershed9 know what it takes to attract individuals to your website and understand the peculiarities of taking lookers and turning them into customers or clients. At Watershed9, we can suggest options for educating your customers and introduce you to content writers that can help your website climb to the top.

For more information on educating your customers through effective website building or to schedule a consultation with one of our professionals, call us at 604-337-1449 or complete the contact form on this site.