Part four of this blog series will discuss the importance of industry know-how when creating a fantastic website. Industry know-how refers to how well you know your guests/customers and sector. This includes things like: how up-to-date you are with professional changes in your industry and general trends. Further, what encourages people buy and what your competitors are doing – to name just a few. This blog will delve into the importance of industry know-how for you and your web developer. It also covers how you can strengthen your understanding. Overall, this blog will give you tips on how to improve your website using excellent industry know-how.

Why knowing your industry is important

Trends and behaviour within the hospitality and tourism industry are constantly evolving. Especially in the midst of a global pandemic. Knowing what is standard legal practice is perhaps the most important factor. However, it doesn’t stop there. It is pertinent to keep up-to-date with potential changes, including those that could negatively affect your industry. Further, generally knowing trends is important when boosting your sales. Knowing exactly what your competitors are doing  enables you to stay current and ahead of your game. Having a good understanding of your industry inside and out is important for a few key reasons. Firstly, acting legally to ensure your guests’ or customers’ safety is of paramount importance. Secondly, if you don’t stay up -to-date it gives your competitors a key advantage. Typically this sort of research is 100% free, so you have nothing to lose by staying in the loop.

It also contributes to your website’s success by keeping the features and content entirely relevant. If you are informed, it means you can keep your potential buyers informed too. Using Covid-19 as an example, regulations can (an often do) change weekly. Many regulations can impact your business, and the way your clients may buy from you. Staying fully up-to-date and ensuring this information is portrayed at keys stages of your visitors buying journey will build trust; making it more likely they will buy from you.

Why knowing your guest or client persona is important

Much like your industry, consumer trends constantly change. The way that potential buyers are likely to buy is intrinsically linked to how the industry is performing. This applies to pretty much every industry. Knowing what drives your clients to buy, or indeed not buy is key. Taking Covid-19 as an example again, this discouraged many people from booking holiday rental properties because of restrictions and fear of losing money. As a result, many holiday rental businesses now offer flexible cancellation. This is great as it directly addresses potential buyers’ fears. It gives them the confidence to continue to book.

Communicating your key changes that positively impact your guests/customers’ needs is vital. If you invest in something for your guest/customers’ benefit be sure to shout about it. Of course you’ll want to do this in a professional way. However, you don’t want to leave people to draw their own conclusions or guess. Show off all of your hard work. The most effective place to do this is your website. Indeed, anywhere your client is likely to decide to purchase from you. Pre-empt your client’s concerns by addressing them with clarity and build trust in the business to consumer relationship.

Why your web developer should have industry know-how

Creating a new website for your business is an important feat. Moreover, it’s an investment. If you are trusting someone else to manage this for you, you need to be sure they know your industry. Further, they need to know the industry just as well, or better, than you do. Lots of web developers will boast fantastic websites. No doubt very atheistically pleasing and highly functional. However, you need a combination of this and industry know-how. Choosing a web team that understands your guests or customers and the sector, who also offer stunning bespoke websites is a far better way to spend your money. A professional web developer that knows your industry will be able to create a website for your business that not only looks great, but drives sales and ensures your clients are happy.

Top tip: when choosing a web developer be sure to ask for specific examples of their work in your industry. Ask them about what other industries they work with. Ideally you want to go for someone who specialises in your industry, rather than web design generally. 

Improving your industry know-how

In this section we’ll give you some tips on how to improve your industry know-how. We’ll break this down into sector knowledge and client knowledge.

Sector knowledge

  • Find a professional body that lobbies/acts on behalf of your industry. They will likely produce newsletters and informative social media posts that will keep you informed. These organisations are worth their weight in gold. Most will charge you a small membership fee. It is well worth joining. You’ll be able to mingle with like minded people and network within your industry. All whilst receiving the most up-to-date information on your sector.
  • Look for unofficial groups related to your industry. Many of these will be found on social media, namely Facebook. These are ideal for viewing general debate and questions on industry development. These will be free to join. However, take everything you read with a pinch of salt. These groups are great for hearing other people’s views, and generally staying in the loop. However, try not to get carried away with hearsay.
  • Sign up for Google alerts using keywords related to your sector. This is really simple to do. Check it out here. Think of some keywords related to your industry and monitor what conversations people are having.

Guest or customer knowledge

  • Take on board guest or customer evaluations. If you already ask your guests/customers for feedback, great. If not, this is a fantastic way to understand what works and what doesn’t. Evaluate responses and adapt your business to suit. If something negative pops up time and time again, then its something you should consider changing. If something positive reoccurs then this is something you should focus on. Chances are, if your guests/customers love it, potential guests/customers will too.
  • Regularly search for buying trends. This depends on your industry, but typically large data collection bodies will publish data on buying trends. You will find this data in a variety of ways. Firstly, professional bodies will likely post this. Secondly, specific companies will publish this. For example, Ipsos Mori is a global market researcher. They often publish informative insights into a variety of industries.
  • Evaluate the data you already have. Believe it or not, you don’t have to be a data analyst to analyse data! Many platforms used by businesses today provide heaps of information. Spending some time to understand what it means could prove invaluable for your business. For example, Facebook tells you which type of posts perform best. From this you can work out what information people affiliate with most. It further indicates what makes them most likely to purchase from you. The positive results are easily transferable on your website.

Why you should choose ACT Studios

We recognise that choosing a web developer is a big decision. Further, choosing the best web developer isn’t an easy decision. We aim to make the process as simple as possible for you. In this article we have made it clear that you should choose a web team that knows your industry inside and out. This is something we live by. We specialise in creating websites with property at the heart of the offering. We offer professional photography and 3D tours and treat the whole project as a visual journey for the consumer.

If you choose us, we will spend time getting to know your business and its needs. We’ll delve into what is going well and what isn’t. We’ll approach it with our problem solving caps on, and creating lasting solutions for your business. If for some reason we don’t think that we’re the best suited to your project, we’ll let you know. We’d hate to take on a project that we’re not experts in, so we’ll be upfront from the beginning. That being said we have a super talented team with a wealth of experience.

We’re happy to share our large portfolio of previous examples with you. We’ll take time to understand what styles you like. Only then, once we really know what it is you’re looking for, we’ll start to create a website that beautifully suits your business. We’ll put a particular emphasis on driving sales in an organic way that your clients will love.

Blog three: Navigation and CTAs

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