When you finally make the decision to become a wedding planner, more than likely you are also making the decision to become a business owner. So not only do you have to learn the ropes of coordinating a wedding, you also have to learn the ins and outs of how to run a business. Dear goodness, that’s a big to-do list! And one of the first things you’ll probably do is create a website.
Wedding Business Website Self Audit
When taking this initial step, it’s easy to get lost in the details. Sometimes you focus so much on the design that you forget about its function. At least once a month in our Facebook group, Becoming a Wedding Planner, we do something called the Wednesday Website Audit. This is where our members can drop a link to their wedding website in the comments and I’ll take 5-7 minutes to do an audit on the functionality of their site. You can do your own wedding business website self audit.
Your Home Page
Having a well-designed home page is critical. But I don’t mean just in its aesthetic. Your home page should sum up your site and have a call to action. For example, I like to see a phone number, email address, and where you are located on the first page (usually at the bottom). There are a million wedding planning businesses, and a lot of them have similar-sounding names. Don’t confuse your potential clients; make sure they know they are looking at the right planner’s site. I also like to see a call to action like “Book Now,” “Contact Me,” or “Learn More.” This is a great way to get your client to subconsciously visit your contact page, opening the gates for communication.
Types of Pages
When I audit a website I make sure they include these types of pages: home, about, services, testimonials, gallery/portfolio, contact, and a blog. The pages that are most often left out are the testimonial, gallery, and blog pages. If you’re just starting out, it’s understandable why you may not have these pages yet; however, I recommend adding them as soon as possible. Here are some blog posts that might help you with testimonial and gallery pages. I’m an avid blogger and truly believe that blogging can help you reach your ideal clients. Read this article if you want to know more about how a blog can help your business.
Most likely, your contact page will have an inquiry form. If not, you need one, like, yesterday. This is one of the most important pages on your website and it is often overlooked. If you ask the right questions up front, you can quickly identify if someone is a good fit to work with you. Your inquiry form is the gateway to connecting with your lead. Whether you first make contact with a bride via phone or email, having some key points to connect on is essential. For example, depending on who your ideal client is, ask about their hobbies and interests, their favorite flower, or preferred wedding dress style. Ask about their venue and why they chose it. Your inquiry form is the perfect opportunity to really make magic happen.
Social Media Links
Be sure your website includes links to all of your social media accounts, not just your favorite one to use. With the endless options for connecting with a bride, nothing should be ruled out. Maybe a bride spends most of her time on Facebook, or maybe she just checks the reviews of companies using Facebook—who knows. But I can tell you that there are tons and tons of very similar-sounding wedding planning companies out there, and if you don’t type it exactly right into Google, you might not be found—and the lead is gone forever. Make it easy for them—add your social media links.
Please be sure to give a starting range on your services. Let your lead know if you’re even in their ballpark budget-wise. I would never want you to waste your time and a bride’s time trying to figure out if they can even afford your service or not. You could spend hours talking with them, creating a vision, only to hear crickets once you send the quote. Make it easy for your potential clients by posting your starting range.
My last piece of advice is to make sure that your website design is cohesive and represents your brand well. Depending on where you are in your business, I recommend Weebly for those doing the DIY route and Restored 316 for those wanting an affordable WordPress option. Also, check out our stock photography if you need pictures for your website until you have some of your own.
Your website is a necessary lifeline to your wedding planning business. Looking at your site with a critical eye and following the recommendations above will help you to optimize its functionality. Anytime you make changes to your site, be sure to repeat these website audit steps. You can download our handy checklist and review your own website, or you can join our Facebook group and have me do a free audit.