I have worked with over 200 clients who’ve contacted me though this site since 2006. It always amazes me how WordPress developers especially don’t use WordPress to get more work.
Stick with me on this one. There’s a lot of good stuff here about what works NOW, even though SEO, Google and online behavior has changed so much in the last decade.
Have a look at Google’s Keyword Planner tool and find out which keywords with “buying intent” you want to target. Here are a few examples on the number of searches per month certain keywords with “buying intent” get:
|Keyword with “buying intent”||Searches/month|
|web designer london||590|
|freelance web developer london||140|
|wordpress developer new york||10|
|web designer scarborough||30|
The above keywords are what potential clients could key in to search engines. This is what I mean by “buying intent”. The keywords you should target will depend on a number of factors, for example:
- how would you describe yourself (designer, developer, etc.)
- your geographical location
- is there are demand for your services in your location (see keyword research above)
- what’s the competition like? (google your keywords and see if you’re likely to be able to get on the first page of search results.
This is just the first step of getting clients online.
Put the keywords with “buying intent” into your home page’s title
Let’s say your name is Leslie Othalthwaite and your website’s domain is LeslieOthalthwaite.com, what do you put as your site’s title? Leslie Othalthwaite? No! The domain is enough. Go WordPress > Settings > General and enter the keywords with “buying intent” into your Site Title.
Now the search engines are more likely to return your site in searches for those keywords and people can see what you do from your site’s title which, don’t forget, is what they see in the search results along with the meta description.
Put these keywords in your blog posts’ titles
But it doesn’t end there. You can put these keywords in your blog posts’s headings and subheadings. For example:
- “The life of a London freelance web designer”
- “How much freelance WordPress developers charge”
- “How to plan web design and development projects for corporations”
The above three blog post title ideas have three things in common:
- They target potential clients with keywords (with “buying intent”)
- They target potential clients with the content (they will be interested in reading the content and therefore could be interested in working with you)
- They are clickable and shareable on social media
- They are quite specific and not general
Try to follow the above four rules when writing some of your blog posts.
Make your blog posts specific not general
“How to run a WordPress web design business” is better than “How to run a business”. The former will get you more traffic from search engines because it’s more likely to come up in searches. The former will get you more interest from social media because WordPress web designers will be interested. The latter doesn’t do anything for anyone. It’s too general.
You will help more people by being specific rather than general.
Help other web designers
Write blog post tutorials and shoot video tutorials to help other web designers. Make these specific as possible as well. For example, “How to change the domain of a WordPress website with the help of cPanel” will help others trying to perform the same task. This will increase your authority and standing in the community. Other designers and developers will get to know you and this will help you build relationships with fellow professionals in your field. They may link to you. Over time, they will feel comfortable recommending you to their clients when they have too much work on.
But you can also find clients with web design tutorials. For example, I have found clients with my post and video about changing the domain of a WordPress website with cPanel. People who want to perform this task will search Google to find out how to do it. Some will eventually ask someone else to do it for them and they are likely to employ the services of the person who made the best tutorial.
So don’t make your material “web designer only”. Use a combination of technical as well as everyday language. Make your tutorials accessible to the layperson. Don’t be too geeky!
Video / YouTube
But it’s not all about blogging. I would urge web designers and developers to get involved in other media and forms of content distribution. It will help you going forward.
Purchase decisions tend to be emotional. The reason a potential client decides to contact you may not be because you are the best at what you do. For example, a client of mine contacted me because she’d seen me talking to a female client on a YouTube video and thought I related well with women(!)
We may not be able to have control over the reasons someone has to work with us but we can vary the type and platform of the content we put out, so that we increase our exposure and the likelihood of being contacted.
Authority is of greater and greater importance online. Setting up Google authorship on your WordPress blog is essential but only one of several steps you must take to show your authority. Other ways to increase authority in the eyes of the search engines and the wider web include these:
- Blog regularly
- Comment on other relevant blogs
- Make sure your blog posts can be easily shared on social media
- Create in-depth profiles on all the major social networks
- Forge long-term business relationships with other designers and developers online and off
Authority takes time to achieve. Take it one step at a time and concentrate on the areas where you’re getting the most traction. All this blogging, sharing, linking and engagement within the community of designers and developers will, in time, get you links and social signals to boost your authority.
Go local and responsive
Some people like to do business locally. So, if you haven’t got yourself on Google Maps right now, you really should.
And if you haven’t got a mobile responsive website right now, you really should as well.
Call to action
Every website should have a call to action. Every blog post should have a call to action.
Consider having a “Hire me” rather than – or as well as – a “Contact me” button or link on your website. Add a link to your contact page at the end of a blog post where you’ve given extra special value. Even better, add a contact form at the end of a blog post where prospects can add an email address and click a submit button. You can use GravityForms to add this email address to an email subscription list, if you want.
You can do it!
You can find people online who will want to hire you for web design or WordPress development. Keep blogging and be specific with your blog post titles. Do something everyday to increase your authority in the web design and WordPress niche.
What do you do to find clients? What did you think of my ideas? Let us know in the comments.
This was part of a presentation I did for the London WordPress Meetup group. Here are the slides: