A question we get all the time is what, exactly, is a microsite, and why do I need it?
Since this is a service we provide to our clients, we wanted to take the time to explain what a microsite is, why we think our clients need one and how microsites can be more beneficial than your main website in marketing matters!
Read on to learn what a microsite can do for you.
P.S. Much of this article is focused on our microsites and how we build them. The other guys might not do it exactly the same, just so you know.
So, what exactly is a microsite?
Microsites are defined as the following:
A microsite is a website, distinct and separate from an organization's main site, that delivers more focused, relevant content about a specific topic or to a targeted audience or even just requiring a defined action. Source
Think of a microsite as an extension of your company’s website. If done right, a microsite is a great way to amplify your marketing efforts; it's focused, SEO friendly and designed to help you get more customers/clients.
And, managing a microsite is often easier than using your website. Rather than going through the lengthy process of contacting your webmaster to make changes to your website any time there's a new marketing campaign, your agency can easily make changes (and with a better turnaround time) with a microsite.
That's the key to microsite success. It's easy to work with and easy for consumers, too!
Do local businesses really need a microsite?
We think so! Like I mentioned earlier, we offer a microsite service with many of our plans in order to give our clients the best return on their marketing efforts.
Here's how a microsite (when done right) can help your business:
1. Microsites have a lot of local SEO value.
Your general business website exists for customers to learn more about who you are and what you do. That's great, but depending on who built your site, it's not always the most SEO-friendly.
Microsites, on the other hand, are typically built around SEO strategies. Microsites are tailored to search engines with the intention of ranking high in searches.
And, when we create a microsite for a client, we focus on optimizing for local SEO (we call this local search marketing). We do this by providing search engines with everything they need to know about where your business is located and what you do in order to help you rank in relevant local searches.
2. Microsites encourage customers to act now.
Your microsite should be optimized for conversions. What does that mean? It's designed to get consumers to interact with your business in some way.
That means it will usually have a strong call-to-action, prompting consumers to make a phone call, get directions, etc. Whether it’s purchasing an item or subscribing to a website's mailing list, good microsites give the consumer a sense of urgency.
3. Microsites are mobile-friendly.
While a lot of small business websites lack mobile-friendliness, our microsites are focused on giving consumers a great user experience, no matter what device they're using!
The fact of the matter is that it's nearly 2018. Mobile usage has surpassed desktop, and if your site isn't mobile-friendly, you're already behind the competition. Your microsite, though, will give you a leg up. It's designed to look good on any screen so that you don't scare potential customers away with slow load times (they'll leave if it takes more than three seconds to load) or difficult-to-navigate pages.
4. Microsites can be edited quickly.
The first microsite was created to promote the Sony Handycam camcorder in 1999. Sony’s marketing department was short on time and had to make a separate website because making changes to the Sony website would have taken too long.
Just like Sony’s marketing department in this instance, sometimes you don’t have the time to make edits to your main website, because your marketing campaign may have a limited window of opportunity to start promoting. Creating or editing on microsites, on the other hand, doesn’t take too long because the content of a microsite is on a much smaller scale than that of the larger general website.
5. You’ll have the ability to test new marketing messages.
Your business’s website needs to stay consistently relevant, and changing too much content on it at random times can confuse, or even lose your customers.
Unlike your business’s main website, microsites offer the opportunity to test and experiment with new marketing ideas. This can allow a chance to see what message you truly want to convey with your business.
So, to sum it all up, microsites are pretty great. Here's how they can help your business:
1. Your microsite is designed to rank high in local searches
2. Microsites have a strong call-to-action, prompting users to take action
3. Microsites look great on any device, from desktop computers to tablets and mobile phones
4. It's usually easier to edit a microsite than to make changes on your main site
5. You can test new marketing messages and learn what works best for your business and your customers
Shameless plug: Check out our local search page to learn more about our local search marketing strategies.