Power Up Your Website: 5 Quick Wins for Dog Trainers

Have you ever heard your website described as your business store front? We’ve all seen physical store fronts we love – bright colors, distinctive signage, clear and welcoming messaging, maybe a free sample at the front (bonus points if it’s chocolate based). The aim is to entice people inside to make a purchase, and your website is no different.

When reviewing your current site (we recommend doing this at least annually), it can be difficult to know which area to focus on. This can lead to a lot of tweaking, without tangible results. 

Want to ensure your website is serving your business in as little time as possible? Here are some of our favorite quick wins:

  1. Be strategic with testimonials

Testimonials are a surefire way to build trust and credibility on your website. Once you’ve gathered some great examples, you want them to work hard for you. Rather than a dedicated testimonials page, consider strategically placing them throughout your website. Sprinkle short, impactful testimonials on every major page, as visitors often enter your site from different entry points. Select testimonials that speak directly to the service you’re highlighting, as well as the type of client you want to attract. These testimonials should reinforce the benefits you offer, whether that’s quick results, your positive training methods, or characteristics like patience and flexibility. If you want to work with first time owners of rescue dogs, for example, a testimonial about how much confidence you instilled in a nervous new dog parent is ideal. Another smart strategy is to position your testimonials near your calls-to-action – this social proof can be the final nudge someone needs to book your services. 

  1. Choose photos that tell your story

High quality images can really elevate a website, and while great stock options exist, these can feel impersonal. This is particularly true for dog training sites. After all, clients are entrusting you with a family member, and often inviting you into their lives, whether in person or virtually. Client photos alongside testimonials, as well ones of you ‘at work,’ provide a glimpse of what it’s like to work with you. These behind-the-scenes images help to convey the fun, transformative experience clients can expect. These days a good phone camera can capture highly usable shots. But if yours tend to fall into the grainy “is that a dog or Bigfoot?” category, you may want to enlist a photography loving friend or professional. A tip for those who don’t love a close up? Go for action shots of you training – you’ll be more distracted and more relaxed!

Photos are also a helpful tool for attracting your ideal clients. Select photos that reflect your target client avatar – for example, using images of young professionals if that’s your niche. And don’t underestimate the power of captions! Captioning your photos is an easy but powerful way to enhance your website’s effectiveness. Captions allow you to reinforce key marketing messages, seamlessly work in relevant keywords for SEO purposes, and educate visitors. For example, under a photo of loose leash walking training, you could say “Luna is learning that staying by her human’s side is more rewarding than chasing cars.” Thoughtful captions make your photos “work smarter” – clarifying the context, catching visitors’ attention, and leaving them better informed.

  1. Start a conversation with lead magnets

Everyone loves a freebie. If you want to continue the conversation with your website visitors, consider adding lead magnets. This could be something valuable like an ebook, checklist, video tutorial, or webinar in exchange for the visitor’s email address. Lead magnets allow you to stay top-of-mind with potential clients even if they aren’t quite ready to sign up for services. An ebook on enrichment, for example, can then be followed up with an email recommending your favorite enrichment toys, and/or information about an upcoming workshop you’re offering on the topic. Adding lead magnets to your website helps to build your subscriber list, with the added bonus of providing valuable educational content. When done right, they help to position you as the go-to expert, keeping your business front-and-center for current and potential clients.

  1. Make that welcome sign loud and proud

Signaling that your dog training business is welcoming and inclusive is another quick win which benefits everyone. There is loads of great information out there about making your website and services accessible to more people. This ranges from the language you use, such as avoiding jargon and providing alternative text for images, to your visual layout. Sufficient contrast between text and background colors, for example, helps to make things more readable. If you’re using audio or video content, transcripts and captions are a good idea. You can also incorporate prominent statements that clearly articulate your commitment to respecting and serving clients regardless of race, gender identity, neurodiversity, or disability. Striking the right tone of kindness, vulnerability and dedication is crucial – avoid just paying lip service and ensure your services truly back up these words. Complementing statements with visual cues such as pride flags can further reinforce these messages. Additionally, listing any diversity/inclusion training or certifications you’ve pursued demonstrates your ongoing efforts. By proactively addressing inclusivity on your website through thoughtful language and visuals, you create a safe space that makes all visitors feel welcome, respected, and supported on their dog training journey with you.

  1. Hire a pro

For some dog trainers, writing and designing their own website is a fun and fulfilling creative project. For others, it may be another headachey task in their long list of ‘to-dos’. There are some excellent DIY website design tools out there, but the professionals exist for a reason. Building a website can be time-consuming, and uses up valuable hours you could have spent training (or watching your favorite Netflix series). Whether you need help with some elements of your site, or all it, consider outsourcing to streamline the process. If you’re feeling lost when it comes to copywriting and design, we can help.