Most people think that, like spouses, one website should be enough. They may understand the reason behind having “a” website. But the idea of having multiple websites just seems like a lot of extra time, effort, and expense – sort of like having an extra spouse. Of course, we understand the thinking. And most of the time we can agree with the logic. But there are quite a few instances when having more than one website pays big dividends.
We’re told by the marketing gurus to choose our target audience. We’re instructed to imagine our ideal customer or visitor. We’re told to create a persona of this ideal, give her or him a name, a personality, a life. And then we’re told to build our website with this one persona in mind. But what if there’s more than one? Are we allowed to only go after one?
Of course not! When we choose our target audience, we also realize there are usually subgroups of the primary target. These subgroups have different needs, wants, or concerns from each other. To connect most effective with visitors from a particular subgroup, we need to communicate with them in a way that addresses their unique set of desiderata. When they have this type of messaging available to them, they feel understood – like we’re speaking directly to their needs and wants. And we all like to feel we’re important enough for someone to make the effort to understand us. On the other hand, building a website that tries to speak to all the different subgroups at once typically dilutes the message to the point where it speaks directly to no one. The result is few, if any, respond to the call to action.
I once worked for a company that manufactured kitchen and bathroom cabinets. They had three distinct sales channels: big-box stores (like Home Depot and Lowes), independent cabinet sellers (specialty storefronts & remodelers), and home builders. These three different sales channels represented three diverse types of buyers, each with their own set of interest, requirements, and concerns. Ideally, we would have had three websites: one general website that featured the brand, another website for the independent cabinet sellers, and a third for the home builders. The big-box stores didn’t need one – they don’t do business that way. If they wanted to put a link to the manufacturer on their website, they would link to the general brand website. But the independent sellers need a website to show the cabinets available for sale to the public. And the home builders have a whole different set of needs, e.g., order status, change orders, expedited delivery request, etc.
It’s not uncommon to see this type of multi-website approach where there’s a general brand website, and then several specialty websites built specifically for each subgroup. These specialty websites often contain a single page that then links to the larger, multipage general brand website. In this arrangement, the look and feel of the specialty websites match that of the general brand website to create a continuity for the entire brand. This also allows the specialty websites to be SEO optimized to specific keywords related to the subgroup’s needs and wants.
When you look at your target audience, do you see subgroups you’d like to market to as well? It’s tempting to try to lump everyone together with a generic message, but as you do that your relevance to them plummets. Instead, follow this three-step plan:
There’s no rule saying you can only market to one audience. But because each group has distinctive needs and wants, you do need a distinctive message for each group. Envision being able to connect in a powerful and persuasive way to each of your target audience subgroups. At Drake Web Development, we specialize in developing messaging tailored to the unique pain points of the visitors you want to attract. Getting started is as easy as scheduling a free consultation. We would love to help you out in any way we can. We never charge our clients for the time they spend talking with us, so don’t hesitate to set up an appointment today. You’ll be glad you did.