Sometimes the stats say it all: online search is the first port of call for 72% of consumers seeking information on local businesses. The conclusion? Building a top-notch, user-friendly website is a smart move for cab companies looking to corner the local market.

Of course, any old website won’t do. Content riddled with errors, broken links and inconsistencies won’t instil consumer trust – in fact, it will likely drive potential customers away.

On the other hand, a well-executed website can turbo-charge your whole business.

Increasingly, customers look to their phones, tablets and laptops when seeking taxi services – the world’s gone digital.

Tick every box and your website will be the best thing that ever happened to your annual turnover.

The Taxi Insurer knows a thing or two about succeeding in the taxi industry. We offer reliable taxi fleet insurance, tailored to your specific needs and budget, so you can hit the ground running.

We’ve also come up with some handy tips to help you build the Rolls Royce of websites – one that will have the customers flocking in.

 

Where do I begin?

A laptop on a table next to a note pad and a coffee

Building a successful website isn’t as complicated as you might think – once you’ve determined exactly what you want the platform to accomplish.

You near a clearly-defined action plan. Will the site primarily function as an online booking service? Or will it simply promote your mini-cab company?

After you’ve established your goals, follow a few key principles and you should be left with a shiny new website that boosts business and broadens your customer base.

Let’s get started…

 

Make your website easy to find

If no-one knows your site exists, no-one will visit it, so make sure users can easily find it.

Pick a domain name that either replicates your cab company’s name or describes your service.

For example:

  • fancyminicabs.co.uk
  • edinburghtaxis.co.uk

Make sure the domain name is correctly spelt, snappy and relevant.

You can even buy multiple domains to edge out the competition a little, should your budget allow for it.

If you want to increase your findability and reach the top of search engine result pages, you’ll also need to focus on boosting your website’s search engine optimisation (SEO).

 

SEO is king

Scrabble tiles arranged to spell out SEO on a table

By focusing on SEO, you’re ensuring your website is tailored to suit search engines, as well as customers.

When potential clients search online for a taxi service, you want to be featured on the first page of results, ideally near the top of the page.

There are several ways to ramp up your SEO strategy:

 

  • Carry out keyword research, acquainting yourself with the exact search terms your audience use – for example, ‘local cabs in London.’
  • Apply your findings, featuring any relevant keywords throughout your site – in headings, title tags and copy, to name a few. An article could feature a title such as ‘The best local cabs in London’, for example.
  • Make sure every page on your site has a meta-description – this is what appears beneath page titles listed in search results, giving searchers a brief summation of the page’s content.
  • Incorporate internal links sitewide – in the anchor text, feature relevant keywords.

 

Most cab companies rely heavily on local business, so focusing on local SEO is also vital.

Claiming your Google My Business account and ensuring it features an accurate business address is key, as is consistent replication of your address throughout your website.

Want to learn more? Take a look at our local SEO tips here.

 

User-friendliness

You can spend a small fortune on your website, but if it’s not user-friendly, people won’t use it.

Test-drive your site. It should be navigated easily, allowing quick return to the homepage wherever users land on the site – a Google search won’t always direct users to your website’s homepage.

The top-level menu should only offer about five straightforward drop-down options, with related content appearing below each tab.

Your contact information should feature in a prominent place sitewide, ideally above the fold (where the bottom of the screen cuts the page off), sitting at the top of the page.

Also include a designated ‘Contact us’ page, which lists your address and phone number. Being easily found is no bad thing, but ensure you have reliable taxi fleet insurance, just in case.

Check that every link on the site works – nothing says amateur like a 404 error page!

Optimise any images or videos for speedy downloads and keep your site’s software up to date, using a host with adequate bandwidth.

Sluggish, glitch-laden websites are unprofessional and unappealing – most customers don’t have the time or patience to wait ten minutes for a page to load.

 

Mobile compatibility

A woman using her phone in a coffee shop

You must ensure your site is mobile compatible, including clickable numbers which enable customers to contact your mini-cab company with ease.

Many of your customers will call when they’re on the go – for instance after shopping or when they’re heading home after a night out.

They’ll want quick service, so make sure they can call you with a few simple taps.

By 2023, the UK’s mobile commerce market is predicted to double – an increasing number of people are shopping using their mobiles.

Make sure your website facilitates this need, providing an online booking function if possible.

 

Think visual

Your site reflects your business, so it better impress.

An overly bare or cluttered website looks unpolished. Likewise, tiny font, uninspiring, image-free pages and a lack of consistent branding won’t set your website apart from the crowd.

A great website should shine a light on what your taxi service has to offer, converting clicks to customers.

The layout should be clear and clean, featuring your company branding consistently, sitewide, in a clear and prominent position.

Make sure your website branding is in sync with any branding featured on fleet vehicles and business cards.

Each page should contain a good balance of graphics and text – customers are more responsive to visually engaging content.

Cutting out unnecessary text and focusing on relevant information, broken up by bright, appealing graphics, will draw customers in and make your site stand out.

A taxi service is more personal than, say, buying a new wardrobe.

Customers are more likely to book a lift with a mini-cab company they deem safe, reliable and secure, so make sure your site features polished shots of the team, as well as members of your fleet in action.

You could even include video promotions of your business on your website.

Consider filming members of your taxi fleet taking part in a charity fundraiser or team-building event – this is a great way to connect with potential customers and build trust.

An animated grid of computer monitors with well branded websites on them

Brilliant branding

To build a great site, you need a great brand strategy.

Think about the role you want your site to play in your company, and how it will be used.

Who is your target audience? Do you want customers to use the website as a booking platform, or would you prefer customers to call and enquire?

You’ll need to make sure the tone of your site matches your taxi service, providing an accurate reflection of the business as well as the services on offer.

A website is a great place to get the word out about your brand, but don’t make the mistake of neglecting other nifty advertising tricks – take a look at our article on the top 10 places to advertise your taxi business

Ensure you have reliable taxi fleet insurance, protecting yourself against theft and vandalism – with recognition comes risk.

A clever way to make some extra cash is to offer ad space on your site. It’s easy to get carried away, so bear in mind that too many ads will drive customers elsewhere.

You don’t want to damage your brand’s credibility, so if you choose to offer advertising, only promote companies with an agreeable ethos and watertight reputation.

You could also partner with other local businesses, promoting their services on your site in exchange for a shout-out on theirs.

Local hotels, bars and pubs often boast a rich seam of clients, so a mention on one of their websites, linking to your site, could help boost your visitor traffic considerably.

 

Get social media savvy

When building a website for your mini-cab company, consider your social media strategy too. Building profiles on popular platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram can help generate traffic to your site.

You could generate business by running promotions, making seasonal offers and posting videos on your social platforms, linking to your site and driving more customers your way.

Social media can help raise awareness of the services you offer amongst a wider audience – in the early stages of your website’s launch, social media will be an invaluable resource.

Feature social media widgets on every page of your website as well.

This will heighten customers’ awareness of your presence on social media, and hopefully encourage them to follow you on channels such as Twitter, where they’ll be notified of any deals or promotions you’re running.

A mobile phone loading Facebook

Keep an eye on traffic

Your website is a wonderful window into customers’ needs and preferences, carrying out handy market research for you – at no charge.

You can utilise web analytics tools to track visitors’ footprints throughout your site, understanding what does and doesn’t work.

For example, you may find that a lot of customers come to your site looking for airport transfer services, or that pages including videos are more popular.

You can start to apply customer insights to your business strategy, tailoring your site to draw in more visitors and more business.

You can also steer clear of content that isn’t working, streamlining your site and maximising its impact.

 

Professional polish or DIY?

When setting up a website, you’ll need to:

 

  • Research and select a reliable hosting provider.
  • Select a web hosting plan compatible with your business needs and projected volume of traffic.
  • Plan your website’s design and layout.
  • Build your website.
  • Write copy for your website.
  • Make sure the website works.
  • Launch and maintain your website.

 

While there are plenty of online tools designed to help novices build their own sites, it’s worth considering professional help, especially if you lack IT prowess.

A professional can design a slick, visually engaging website that operates smoothly and meets your needs. Add quality taxi fleet insurance and you’ll be free to focus on other areas of your business.

When executed well, a website can be a great investment, generating valuable business and keeping you firmly at the forefront of the digital competition.

Phones and tablets aren’t going anywhere, so it’s better to embrace digital marketing, then reap the rewards.

A person building a website using code

How much does it cost to build a website?

A website for a mini-cab company doesn’t need a complex array of functions – it can be relatively simplistic.

According to Expert Market, a ‘basic’ website would feature a responsive design, contain one to five pages, as well as a landing and contact page.

This type of site is ideal for ‘small businesses in traditional industries’, and is suited to those who don’t require site content to be updated often.

 

Upfront costs

Design: £200-£500

Domain: £2.99-£100 annually

 

Recurring costs

Hosting: £3-£45 per month

Content updates: £0-£10 per month

 

Alternatively, a ‘small business’ site might suit a larger cab company requiring more frequent content updates.

This kind of website will be feature-rich, including several pages, integrated social media, a responsive design, and a content management system (CMS).

 

Upfront costs

Design: £500-£1,000

Domain: £2.99-£100 annually

 

Recurring costs

Hosting: £3-£45 per month

Content updates: £0-£30 per month

 

Protecting your investment

A rank of London taxis

A shiny new website can do wonders for your taxi service, helping you reach a wider audience and boost business.

However, increased exposure can mean an increased chance of targeted theft or vandalism – that’s where The Taxi Insurer steps in.

We understand that your fleet is your investment, one which should be protected.

Whether or not you opt to build a website for your business, quality taxi fleet insurance is essential. Your drivers and vehicles are out on the road every day, facing multiple risks such as road traffic accidents.

The Taxi Insurer specialises in providing tailored taxi fleet insurance, available whether you buy or lease your vehicles, and including mixed fleet policies.

Don’t take any chances – talk to a member of our experienced team and get a quote today.

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