Published: 29/04/2021 By Chris Gilbert - Website ConsultantSo, you’re going it alone and setting up your own estate agency – great! You’re probably hard at work getting your new website designed and built, too; creating a specification document, engaging with a web development agency and looking forward to generating those all-important customer leads to fuel your new business.
But before you get too excited, is there something you may have forgotten? Something deceptively simple that can give your new website and brand a timely boost in organic traffic, build valuable brand awareness and give your prospective customers vital information?
Holding Pages: The Unsung Heroes of Successful New Website Developments
When you think of a traditional holding page, you might be thinking of the old-style ‘Coming Soon’ type website pages - often containing little of any value to visitors other than vague information about a new site launch. If you think these would be fairly pointless, you’d be absolutely right! However, it’s important that we make the distinction between a ‘Coming Soon’ page, and a holding page as the two are fundamentally different.
A holding page should act as a ‘soft launch’ of your new website; so, whilst it won’t have all the bells and whistles of a completed website, it can still do a vital job of building audience engagement and establishing your online presence. In fact, a really good holding page should contain all the information your customers need to get their attention and make contact with you – essentially, what your website ultimately will be looking to do.
For start-up businesses, a good holding page should be top of their to-do list – not just a ‘nice to have’ frivolity. And here’s why…
- They help build vital brand awareness
If you’re a new business, getting your company name out there is critical to success; so whilst you’re beavering away on getting a full website built, a holding page can do the job of generating initial brand awareness.
Because holding pages are generally very simple and quick to set up, they can do the heavy lifting of building an online web presence whilst your site is in development. They can also help put a face to the name of your new business – and this is vital in the world of property where reputation really matters.
Think of your website’s holding page as a film teaser trailer: it’s there to generate a buzz with your audience and get them to visit your site once it’s up and live. Make it interesting and give them a reason to come back again!
- They can help boost your SEO performance
SEO (or Search Engine Optimisation) is the process of increasing the quantity and quality of search traffic to your website through organic search engine results. Basically, it’s a process that can help you rise up those all-important Google search listings and, most importantly, rise above your competitors, too. For start-up businesses entering a competitive market, making an immediate impact with a new website can be tough; however, a holding page can get your foot in the door whilst your website is being fully built and developed.
As any holding page you build will most likely use your new company domain name, any search optimisation work you do for your holding page – such as good quality keyword-driven content, adding H1 headers and appropriate page titles and meta data - will continue to enhance your visibility once your site goes live as your domain will already be more visible – simple!
A holding page we created for Loney Miller, who's site has since gone onto long lasting success!
- They can act as a focal point for your social media activities
Whilst building your social presence will be a challenge of its own, having a holding page can help support your activities in the short term as potential customers will instantly be able to access what will eventually be your website – and better still, they’ll also know it’s there for the future, too.
- They can help start driving PPC traffic
For example, using Google AdWords can begin driving paid traffic to your holding page as you’ll be bidding on search terms being used by your ideal customers. If done well, a targeted PPC campaign can help give your holding page more visibility via paid search results, and do the job of letting your new potential customers know your agency is open for business.
Must Haves for Your Website Holding Page
So, we now know the positive effects a good holding page can have for start-up business websites and new agencies looking to get their business off to a flying start – but what are some landing page must haves? Well, to get you started, here’s what the expert team here at Webdadi would recommend:
- Your brand’s identity – This is your big entrance, so make your brand logo & identity clear immediately visible – in fact, give the design of you holding page real thought; not just a ‘that’ll do’ approach!
- A show-stopping headline and sub-header – Make your USP and proposition clear from the offset! Take the time to create something that piques interest, attention, and understanding from your audience.
- A well-crafted summary of you and your business – This is your elevator pitch! Define who you are, and what you can bring to your customers that makes you different
- Some keyword-driven content – Include some content which is keyword driven and will attract the people you’re looking to make customers
- A countdown clock – Yes, may seem a bit clichéd, but a nicely designed countdown clock can create a sense of audience anticipation and urgency!
- A clear, converting call to action – Lastly, give your visitors a reason to contact and engage with you! This is where you should also have a simple form to kick off you website’s lead generation.