Your website is your storefront for the entire world. While many businesses have chosen to stick to social media to promote their services, they could be doing so much more with their own website.
This series will show how easy it is to create your own website for your business, whether you’re a hairdresser, a restaurant, a consulting firm, a photographer, or anything. With our recommendations, you can have your own website up and running quickly, easily, and ready to get customers in.
In this one, we’re focusing on the hair and beauty industry — where image is everything and whole new audiences can be quickly discovered online.
Before you get started making your website, start working out what you want to put on the website. Write the content you want on each page, focusing on the services you want to promote.
It might be tempting to just put a PDF list of your prices up, but, instead, think about what the customer is looking for. Think about what previous customers have asked. Explain what each service is and what the customer will receive with it. Do you use specific brands? Have different prices that depend on the length of time? Do you provide special services, like autism-friendly haircuts or wedding makeup? Adding in the details isn’t just great for your business, it’s fantastic for search engine optimisation, which will mean more customers.
Once you know what you want to put on your website, you can then buy a web hosting package and get started.
We recommend buying a good basic package, either our Essential hosting package or our Basic Managed WordPress package. Both of them will give you the space and performance you need without costing too much. If you choose Essential, you’ll need to install WordPress on your package, and if you choose Basic, WordPress will be installed automatically.
Making Things Look Good
With WordPress, there are literally thousands of themes available to make your website look great. Here are three we’ve found that are designed for the beauty industry.
Built on Bootstrap, this theme includes everything a salon needs for their website, including special offers, booking options, and plenty of space to show off your gorgeous photos. There is also a premium version available for $39, which adds further customisation options.
Bright and eye-catching, especially with those lovely cards, this theme has beautiful elements that make it a great for your website. A sliding header gives you plenty of options to lure your customers in, and there’s WooCommerce integration to build up your online store. While there isn’t a premium version of this individual theme available, you can purchase premium versions of all their themes for $99.
Clean and elegant, this theme is filled with so many features, including two options to list your services, a section for team profiles, and Schema.org markup to provide even more search engine optimisation. There is a premium version of this theme as well, letting you customise the design, add more features, and more, all for $59.
Booking and Scheduling
You can have the most beautiful website out there, but if people can’t make appointments online, there’s no point. You could go with a third-party booking service, or try these plugins to keep it more in-house.
This plugin gives your customers an easy way to book appointments directly from your website, and also makes it easy for you to list working days, multiple services, and integrate it with PayPal or WooCommerce. Plus it gives you a convenient appointment list to print out. If you want more integrations, including other payment methods, external services, and Google Calendar, you can purchase the Professional version for $5.99 a month.
This plugin also gives your customers a quick way to book appointments in an easy-to-understand calendar format. While the free version does not have direct integration with payment providers, it does have a discounting feature and integration with Google calendars. The paid version includes integration with payment providers, a mobile app for your staff members, and even more add-ons for €79 a year.
There is no free version of Amelia, but for £59 a year, you get an amazing collection of features in an easy to use backend. Convenient payment provider integration, customisable designs, an admin dashboard giving you the statistics you want, and everything designed for convenience and ease of use.
Integrating Social Media
Even if you do have a website, you still want to keep your social media accounts filled with content. Whether it’s your Instagram account filled with your nail art, your Facebook page linking to hairstyling tutorials, or your YouTube channel with five-minute makeup tips, your social media accounts are vital to your business. These three plugins will help you easily integrate them into your WordPress site.
Instagram is a fantastic way to introduce people to your services, but it’s also a locked-in system, making it difficult for anyone who doesn’t have an Instagram account to see your work. With Spotlight, you can easily integrate your Instagram feed into your WordPress site, not only pointing your customers to your Instagram account but also giving you an easy way to show off your work.
Smash Balloon has produced separate plugins for Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube, giving you a convenient way to integrate specific social media accounts into your site. Each plugin costs $49 for a year and will give you a fast and smooth integration with your personal feed.
But if you want to show off all your social feeds across your site, Feed Them Social lets you put in Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube feeds onto your site, along with Follow buttons to make it even easier for your customers to find you. It’s $50 a year for the premium version, but the free version does come with a lot of features.
Showing Off Your Skills
While social media is great for showing off your skills, there’s something to be said for large beautiful photos of your work right on your website. Here are some plugins that are built to create great galleries.
Easy to set up and use, Envira not only gives you a lovely gallery on your website, but includes social media buttons, video embeds, and watermarking, as well as search engine optimisation for even better results. The basic version is only $26 for the year, and gives you a convenient gallery at a low price.
If you have multiple galleries but want to have them in one convenient block on your home page, Album is a free plugin that gives you an elegant solution that loads quickly and is easy to work with. The free version comes with four different styles, but for $24.99 a year, you can upgrade to the Pro version, which has eight more styles as well as a custom tag filter, making it easy to add variety to your album.
This plugin not only gives you great-looking gallery carousels, but you can also create text block carousels as well — great for special offers, blog posts, latest products, and more. It’s easy to customise, including how fast the carousel rotates, what’s shown, and how it looks. It’s $39 per year for one site or $139 for a lifetime purchase.
So there are some options for your brand-new website. Whether you’re a makeup artist, hairdresser, massage therapist, nail technician, or run your own salon, having your website is a great way to engage with your existing customers and gain new clients.
If you ever have any questions about how a website can help your business, get in touch with us! We’re happy to help!