Having a website gives you the opportunity to pitch to customers, show them your work, and store your business and contact information all in one place. Maintaining a website shows that you’re professional and it also gives your customers an idea of what they can expect from your pet services. We’ll walk through some online business resources that you can use to get started today.
Online Presence: Why
Why should a business have an online presence? You can find almost anything you want online and it should be no different for your business. Having an online presence for your pet business helps your potential customers find out all they need to know about you and your services. Having a website is the perfect way to display your work, like pictures of your groomed furry friends, and have all your information readily available. You may not be available 24/7, but your website is. There are several online business resources available for you to get started.
Website builders help you build your website so that you don’t have to start from scratch. These website builders provide templates, designs, and more to make your pet care website visually appealing and easy to understand.
If you’re lost and not sure where to start or how to design your pet care website, we recommend you use Weebly as your free business resource. Weebly offers pre-designed templates that you can choose from, depending on your preference and company’s branding. Each template is ready to launch after you include your business information. Your visitors can easily view your website via desktop or mobile. Weebly also includes your website’s performance, site updates, and more so that you can track how your website is performing. Creating a website requires a lot of work, but Weebly makes it easy to get started and create your pet care website.
Wix is a popular option to use when creating a website because you can either select a template and design that you’d like to use, or you can create your own website from scratch. When you design your website from scratch, you are able to select every detail yourself—like where you want your pictures, the color and font of your text, and so much more. Their service includes hundreds of predesigned pet templates that you can customize, which may be an easier option for you. Keep in mind that you may have a little less flexibility if you choose to create your website with a predesigned template.
Squarespace: Online Booking
Another option for building your pet care website is Squarespace. Like the other services, Squarespace has predesigned templates that you can use, color palettes, and fonts to fit your style and needs. Squarespace allows you to set up an online store, book services, third-party extensions, and more. What is nice about Squarespace is that they offer a free trial period, with no credit card information needed. If you decide that you like Squarespace and would like to move forward with their services, you can pay a small fee per month, starting at $18 for your website.
What to Include On Your Website
Keep in mind that when designing a website, it is common to have a navigation menu at the top of each web page that shows the different pages that your visitors can click on to learn more. Your navigation bar should include:
- Home Page
- About Your Business
- Contact Information
- Customer Reviews
- and if you’d like, Blog
Before you start building your site, sit down and write a list of the pages you would like on your website. That is what they call “wire-framing” your site, just knowing how many pages you are going to need and the ideas or goals behind each page.
We’ll start with the Home Page.
The Home page is the first page that your visitors see when they visit your site. This sets the stage for your pet care business and your visitors’ experience with your business. You’ll want to make sure that it is straightforward and easy to read, with clean designs. You’ll want to include the name of your company, and possibly your company’s mission statement. You’ll also want to include your company logo, appealing and relevant photos, a call to action (perhaps a ‘Book Now’ button), and links to your social media pages. You will also want to list out services offered, like pet sitting, pet boarding, dog walking, etc., so your visitors don’t have to search all over your website for what they are looking for.
About Your Business
The second thing that should be included on your website is an About page. There are several different items that can be included on your About page. For starters, you’ll want to share your prices and services offered. You can do this in a list form or however you’d like—just make it very straightforward. You can also add a ‘Book Now’ button that takes them to your calendar so that they can schedule an appointment with you. There are several different pet care software options available; here is one.
Some other software options you can checkout for scheduling services are listed below. Each service has a specialty that they do best, so make sure you find the best option for the services you are offering.
- Time To Pet
- Pet Pocketbook
- Pet Sitter Plus
If you’d like, you can also share a snippet about you and how you got into the pet care business. This section is for you to share your pet care background and experience with potential customers and to show them your personality. This is your opportunity to show them why they should choose you to take care of their pets.
On your Contact page, you can list your business’ phone number, email address, and your business’ operating hours. We also suggest that you have a Google Map with a marker for your location on the Contact page, so that your customers can know where your business resides. You can provide them with a contact form to field their questions, making it easier for you to know how to assist them and get back to them in a timely manner.
You can also let your customers know what an average response time is, so that they can expect when to hear back from you. And don’t forget to share your social media handles, so your customers can check out your Instagram and Facebook pages.
Customer Reviews & Pictures
Another page that could be included in your navigation menu is a reviews page, which can include customer reviews and pictures. You can ask your customers to rate your business and leave comments about the work you’ve done for them. This will help potential customers see the quality of work that you offer, incentivizing them to hire you. If you’d like to include testimonials from customers, this would be the page to do it.
You can also use this page to show pictures of your furry customers. For example, if you are a pet groomer, you can use this page to show before and after pictures of the dogs that you have groomed. Having pictures on your website will help with your pet care website design and help it be more engaging. However, make sure you get permission from your customers before posting any pictures or testimonials.
A blog is a great place for you to provide value to your current and potential customers and to attract new business. Having a blog gives you the opportunity to write about pet-related topics to answer any questions that your customers may have. You can refer your customers to your blog for questions about how to care for their pet. If you really want to get into blogging, you can learn about search engine optimization (SEO) and start ranking your website, which helps you get more traffic to your website and business.
Create Your Website!
Your website can be what sets you apart from your competitors, especially if it’s interesting and professional. Weebly, Wix, and Squarespace are all small business resources that can help you build your website from the ground up, and help your business thrive.
Now that you know what to include on your pet care website, you are ready to start designing and creating it! Be sure to include all your business information and services on the Home page, share about your website and yourself on the About page, include your contact information, provide customer reviews and photos, and as a bonus, share a blog. If you’d like examples of the best pet care websites, take a look here. You’re on the right track to creating a successful pet care business! Get started today so you can build your pet care business.
Pet Sitter & Dog Walker Business Guide