The Cat’s Pyjamas
- Top listing for ‘cat sitting Sheffield’.1
- Fully responsive: works well, looks good on all devices.
- Easy for clients to update themselves.
- Interactive map showing area of operation.
- Easy to use, no spam form.
Easy to follow, no distraction layout.
Information is clearly laid out in single column from top to bottom of the page. The front page ends on the ‘call to action’ – the enquiry form. When the visitor reaches this form they should have seen enough information to feel ready to send an enquiry.
Copy at the top of the page lets potential customers know if they’re on the right website. It also repeats the phrase ‘cat sitting’ for the search engines.
Area of operation
An interactive Google map shows the area that The Cat’s Pyjamas covers. Its essential information so it’s near the top of the page. There’s no point trying to sell the service to people who live outside the area and it’s good to remove uncertainty for those that live within it.
For people who don’t get on with maps, the suburbs within this area are listed. Listing them means that they are picked up by search engines.2
Serotonin inducing cat photo.
The cat photo breaks up the blocks of text and induces pleasant and calming thoughts in the cat-loving site visitor. These happy thoughts are henceforth subconsciously associated with The Cat’s Pyjamas.3
Easy to add testimonials
The testimonials have their own custom form in the ‘back office’ so it’s dead easy for my clients to add them.
Very helpful enquiry form
The form has drop down calendars for easy date entry.
It has a clever spam trap so spam won’t be sent through it.4
Error checking is ‘live’: users are told straight away that what they’ve entered is ok or what needs to be done to make it ok.
There are still too many website forms where the entire form has to be filled in and submitted. Then the form reloads to tell you that you did something wrong but it’s up to you to work out what. This isn’t necessary.
Users only have to enter email or phone number. For an initial contact why does anyone need both?
Supporting info on separate pages.
‘About us’, ‘FAQs’ and ‘Testimonials’ have a page each.
This could have been a single page website (in the modern style). This would have meant big chunks of text on the front page which we thought could be discouraging. There are ways around this – for example, adding the text as a ‘dropdown’ so it only appears when the visitor wants to read it. Would everyone wanting to use the service read the ‘About Us’ and ‘FAQs’? Probably. So a single page containing everything could be appropriate. There’s not always a correct answer.5
They used sans-serif fonts and were mostly black text on white. I used a serif font and coloured (and ‘textured’) backgrounds to differentiate the site, match the illustration style and add some ‘warmth’.
The phrase ‘The Cat’s Pyjamas’ originated in the 1920s, which inspired the choice of period-style script font for the site name. This has since been used on business cards.
It seems sensible to match the colour scheme to the illustration but a predominantly blue site would be too ‘cool’ so I’ve used blue sparingly.
As well as expecting my clients to be totally professional, customers also need to trust them personally. We wanted the site to look ‘professional’ but not to make it slick or impersonal. I now think that it could do with more curves and rough edges, but you can over think these things.
The main thing is that it’s an effective website that’s doing well on Google and that paid for itself very quickly. At the time of writing it’s on the front page for ‘cat sitting sheffield’ and occupies the first place in the Google Business section at the top of the search page (so it’s first listing on the page after the ads). Which is nice.
- This is tested using private browsing, which should mean the search is ‘depersonalised’. Google tries to personalise your search results based on the websites you visited from previous searches and your location, so results may vary.
- Yes, just the one occurrence of the suburb name on the website is picked up. The website ranks very well for ‘cat sitting’ plus the suburb name.
- This is a fact.
- Well, idiot human spam can’t really be avoided but almost all spam is from ‘robots’ and they are not yet clever enough to avoid my trap. Hahaha!
- This website is a very long single page. It does have a lot of images breaking the text up though.
- The most recent 3. All of them are on the testimonials page.
- That’t the idea. It might be nonsense.
- These tended to be directories of pet sitters or ‘franchise’ websites.
- Dated looking, untidy, too much text (which is part of being dated), low quality photographs.