Sick And Tired of Freight Forwarder Website Scams?
"There are a lot of fake websites on the internet!" the owner of a China based freight forwarding company told me. That's why we haven't put any more money into our website, we don't trust the internet.
But you're not a fake forwarder company, I responded. You're legit. But if I look at your website you could be a fake forwarder too. Your site has no original pictures, lots of typo errors, and no information that shows your uniqueness.
Look at the two completely fake websites pictured below. How can you tell? They're identical. They're both missing contact details like phone number and company address. All of the photos are stock images. But the sad reality is that these sites actually "look better" than about 90% of the legit freight forwarder websites I visit.
So how can a shipper tell the difference? And what can a legit forwarder do to separate from this confusion? I provide ten tips below that you can apply right away.
So How Can a Legit Forwarder Win Against this Competition?
(1) Add People Photos: As a legit forwarder you may have staff including a Managing Director, Membership Services, Event Planner. Put their pictures on your website. Be sure to add your management team or Board Members. Show that "Yes, we've got real people over here." Pro tip: Add their email address and LinkedIn page to further boost credibility.
(2) Show Pictures of Shipments: Hey you're in the logistics business. What are you and your people doing during the day? You move cargo from A to B. When you're going to the port -- how about taking a picture? Picking up a shipment? Add a photo of the cargo. Bonus points: Include a banner with your company name and logo to maximize branding opportunity.
(3) Contact Us Page: How can people reach you and how do you respond? Add a contact form so people can enter their requests. You can even add a chat function to allow visitors to chat live during your office hours or 24-hours. Do you have instant messaging? Can your audience reach you on WhatsApp, Skype, WeChat or other messaging platforms? Think mobile devices.
(4) The AGM -- a Big Photo Op: If you're a member of a freight forwarder network you probably attended the Annual General Meeting. Where are the photos? Show yourself interacting during the event. Add captions and names. Take some shots around the stage. Did you participate in 1-to-1 Meetings? Add some photos of you participating to your website.
(5) Social Proof: Today it's all about social. Decision makers in shipping are on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. What is your digital presence looking like on these platforms? Add the social icons prominently to your homepage so people can click and see that you're actively involved and engaged on a regular basis online.
(6) Video Is Your Friend: Today you don't need to hire a production crew to follow you around. You can shoot a compelling video with your mobile phone or tablet. What if you record your Customer Service Manager answering a Frequently Asked Question? What about a behind the scenes shot in the office? A day-in-the-life video?
(7) Let Me See Your Brochure: A lot of times 1-to-1 Meetings start with putting a brochure in the hand of someone. But then what? Is it on your website? Can I browse it? Can I download it? You can even add it as a video on YouTube. See below.
(9) Add Customer Testimonials: What clients have you worked with in the past year? Can you get a brief testimonial about your work? Make it easy for them to share this information with you. This builds trust and many of your clients will be happy to do it.
(10) Create a Blog: Today a blog is the most powerful tool to increase your visibility in search results, build authority and tell your story. If you don't have one on your site it's a huge miss. You're in business to be seen and to communicate your message. This is low hanging fruit.
People do business with people that they know, like and trust. You can use your website as a tool to help visitors know that "this company is legit". Fake forwarders are frauds. As a business with years of experience, an established network and a customer base you have to convey your message to the target audience.
The Internet is always open for business. Make sure that whenever a visitor hits your website, they know that you are 100% legit, ready to provide valuable service and in business to win. And if you need help applying any of the tips click here.
Now over to you. Let me know your thoughts in the comments.