Disclaimer before we get started! I want to clarify that the content in this blog post is for pet service businesses like dog walkers, pet sitters, dog trainers, pet photographers, doggie daycares and boarding facilities, veterinarians, coaches, nutritionists, massage therapists, etc. This is not meant to be for pet e-commerce or product or retail companies.
However! A little tidbit for pet product-based businesses… You likely don’t need your contact page in your main navigation because most of the time, people don’t need to reach out before purchasing. I also highly recommend making use of your FAQ page and somehow connecting it to your contact page so that in case people do want to reach out, you likely already have answered it before!
Here are some tips on the best things to include on your pet business website's contact page:
1. A contact form
We don’t need a long one here either. Many of my clients want to include every question under the sun on their contact form, but what ends up happening is you end up deterring a lot of people from getting started. If they don’t know much about you, the last thing they want to do is fill out a lengthy form before they’re even sold.
So, as far as what to include on your contact form, I’d say only include the bare minimum for them to at least take the next step in your process.
For example, maybe they just want to know your availability for a boarding stay before committing or they want to know something before committing that’s not listed on your website. Would they want to spend several minutes filling out the form when they don’t even know if you’re available for the boarding stay? Unlikely.
Be sure to include as required:
First name (so you know who it is)
Email address (so you know how to reach out in response)
The message itself (so you can assist/answer questions)
What service(s) they’re inquiring about (so you know what they’re looking for)
BONUS: Where they found you (this is great for knowing which marketing avenues are working, so you can know where your time is best spent!)
And no, believe it or not, you don’t NEED to include a phone number on there. AGAIN, as Millennials take over as primary pet owners, we need to realize their preferences here. And Millennials do not like being called unexpectedly or without notice. You can certainly add it as an optional question. And, if you’re scheduling a call with them soon after this contact form, you can certainly make it required. Just something to consider!
Note: Since website traffic is heavily transitioning to mobile use, keep that in mind when adding questions to your contact form, too! People don’t want to (or perhaps have trouble) completing longer forms on a phone.
Unfortunately, most pet sitting software doesn’t allow you the option of having an embedded contact form from which you can generate automations (seriously - such a bummer and something I hope changes soon!). However, if you’re a dog photographer, a coach, nutritionist, or other service provider, I HIGHLY recommend getting a CRM like Dubsado to help with this. You can embed a contact form into your website and from there, it can automatically begin workflows for you while you’re away from your desk! Learn more about the power of Dubsado for your pet business here.
Taking a quick intermission to say—if you understand the whole contact page thing so far but need help actually creating the website page itself, you will adore our easy-to-customize website templates made specifically for pet sitters and dog walkers, dog trainers, and pet photographers! They have everything you need, including a beautiful contact page that you can customize to your needs after reading the rest of this blog post! Not only that, but each template also comes with our Unleashed Website Academy that teaches you exactly how to set everything up, nail your brand voice, copywriting, and SEO, and onboard your dream clients seamlessly! Check out the Pet Marketing Unleashed templates here!
2. Other methods to contact you
It’s actually surprising how many websites out there JUST have a contact form but no email address. Don’t forget that typically people are very lazy when browsing websites which means they don’t always want to go through your contact form, especially if they just have a simple question.
So, be sure to provide your email address at a minimum, if not also your phone number. For smaller dog walkers, pet sitters, dog trainers, and pet photographers, I typically recommend placing priority on your email address so that you can set systems in place without your attention being pulled in a million directions.
3. Your location or service area
Not only does this help with SEO (keywords, yo!), but it also helps weed down clients that may be about to reach out but then see they’re not in your service area. Remember, anything we can do to help your process is key here before a potential client takes the next step!
4. Links to your social media
This allows them to continue the connection process. Once they reach out, they may want to learn more about you, see the behind the scenes, or message you directly!
5. Your hours (and how long it’ll take for you to get back to them)
It’s important to understand when they may expect a response from you. If they’re submitting this at 8pm but see your hours end at 5pm, they may realize they won’t get a response from you tonight and that’s okay. Or, if it’s not okay, they don’t need to waste their time reaching out to you and you don’t have to waste your time responding when they’re already onto the next!
6. Bonus: Link to your FAQ and/or booking process page
I’ve heard time and time again from pet business owners that they receive all sorts of messages that are essentially just repetitive questions from things that are ALREADY on their website. Has this happened to you? 🙋🏽♀️ I’d bet it has.
So, potentially consider (above your contact form) letting them know that you highly recommend them checking out your booking process or FAQ page before reaching out in case their question is already answered immediately online. And if not, of course, reach out to you!
P.S. Keep stock of which questions come in most frequently and see if they can be added to your website so you can avoid more of this in the future. Your process will always be evolving but the goal is to continually see how we can make your day and your life EASIER.
7. Strategize what comes next!
Arguably the most important part… what comes after they fill out the form? The more you can streamline or automate, the better. Can it automatically redirect them to another web page that tells them to book a call with you? Can it send them an automated email for the next steps to working with you? Consider what comes next and the best and most effective way (on your end and theirs) to get them to move through your
Here is some helpful information to see what I’m talking about here:
If you're interested in having your website do all of this for you--meaning dream clients getting onboarded your dream clients all while you're away from your desk or sleeping or perhaps on a nice weekend getaway, our FREE masterclass will teach you how to do just that! Check it out here!