The main goal for any business website is to interact with customers and encourage sales. Other goals for the website can include branding, as well as functioning as an information resource for customers.
One way to achieve these goals and others is by offering downloadable content. When you have PDFs available for download, customers will become more familiar with your brand, will interact with the website more, and will have the information they need to purchase a product or service with confidence, thereby increasing their sense of satisfaction. This then provides a ripple-effect of benefits for you, the information provider.
PDFs can be used in a number of different ways and can be a valuable addition to any website.
Types Of Information To Make Downloadable
It’s possible to create many types of useful PDFs, depending on what your visitors may be looking for or are interested in. PDF is just the format the information is provided in. It’s easily downloadable and ensures consistency no matter the device, operating system, or other technical factors.
Catalogs, brochures, and price lists are commonly put into PDF format so they can be downloaded. Depending on the company, other options can include white-papers, manuals, or how-to guides for the products being sold.
It’s also possible to create short and informative eBooks, which are a great way to drum-up interest in products or give customers the information they will find of high value or use. This reflects very well on you as a source for their needs and interests.
Most websites will benefit from multiple downloadable PDFs instead of just one. Each product being sold, for instance, can have a downloadable brochure or how-to guide that gives the visitor more information on what it is and how it works.
Manuals for products can be uploaded and put on the product page, so customers can get answers to questions they might have before or after their purchase.
A catalog can be added to the main page to give customers the chance to browse products offline. A white-paper, user guide, or manual can be added to the same website to provide more targeted, focused information on the benefits and workings of an individual product or service.
Multiple, properly categorized PDFs provide more of an opportunity for branding as well as conversion and increased user engagement.
PDF Documents Encourage Interacting With Website
The more customers interact with a website, the longer they remain on it. This increases their brand awareness and means it’s more likely they’ll make a purchase. PDFs on the website can help encourage the customer to interact with the website more often and for more reasons.
Additionally, PDFs can be used as incentives, which encourage customers to sign up for an email list, request more info from the company, answer surveys, and more.
Depending on the document and information, some PDFs may need to be more instantly available and easily accessible. An example would be a PDF downloaded directly from the website, like a menu for a restaurant.
Others, however, may be provided only to customers who sign up for an email list or who engage in some other prompted way. This encourages more customers to provide their email, name, and other details that are useful for building sales and marketing data. For example, an email used to access a PDF can be automatically stored and added to a newsletter list.
The customer receives the PDF with the information once they sign up. They are then able to continue receiving important and relevant information that aligns with their initial interest from the business through the specific email contact list.
Downloadable Content Keeps A Website Decluttered
Websites should be as simple to navigate as possible. This ensures customers can always find what they’re looking for and will not back away out of frustration. But, when there’s a lot of information on the website, things can get very cluttered very easily.
While all that valuable information is waiting for a visitor, they may never find it on a cluttered website. This means a visitor may give up and look to a competitor or other source. Using PDF documents as downloadable content helps to keep the website decluttered and well organized, and also enables customers to zero-in on the information they’ll find most valuable and relevant.
For example, a website may offer a number of different products and also provides detailed information about each one for their customers. Each product page would end up being very long, even overwhelming to a new visitor. When presented with a massive amount of text, tables, or data, it could be difficult for customers to find answers to the specific questions they have.
However, with downloadable PDFs that are summarized, clearly titled, and linked, the page is easier to navigate, much cleaner looking, and easier to view. Customers can find the PDF that contains the information they need and simply download per their needs. It’s no longer necessary for them to scroll through information that’s not currently relevant and may deter them in the short term.
PDFs Offer Opportunity For Branded Content
Branding is crucial for today’s businesses. It helps customers learn to recognize the business for its unique style. it also puts the brand at the front of their mind when they need something the business might offer.
PDF documents can be a way to build branded content for companies as part of their overall content-building efforts. This gives customers an easy way to recognize them and associate the company with their needs. Any PDF created for the website should be branded and designed properly to encourage this brand recognition.
When creating PDFs for the website, branding should be a consideration in the overall design. A well-designed PDF document creates interest and adds professionalism to any type of information. Whenever the PDF is viewed, the customer should have no question on where this valuable resource came from and who made it.
The PDF should include logos and colors that are consistent and seamlessly connect it to the website. Even if the customer views the PDF months after downloading it, they should be able to tell where they downloaded it from so they can visit the website again. This is also valuable for spreading brand awareness for PDFs that are likely to be shared among colleagues and across organizations.
Tips for Creating A High-Quality, Branded PDF
Website owners can create their own branded PDFs to display on their website. Creating a PDF doesn’t need to be hard, but there is a lot to consider during the creation.
Follow these steps to create a branded PDF for download:
· Choose Information for the PDF – Try to stick with one topic per PDF. The topic might be the menu, information about a specific product, or a manual. It’s better to have one manual per product as well as separate downloads for different languages. This is preferable to one huge manual with multiple unrelated products or languages in it.
· Select Images – Images can help break up the text, provide more information for customers, show how something works, and more. Carefully consider the images to be used in the PDF; they should be high-quality, clear, and sized appropriately for the page.
· Add Branding – Include the company logo, colors, and more. Branding should be done throughout the PDF, so the customer sees the branding frequently while they’re viewing the page. Still, it should be unobtrusive. The focus should be on helping and informing the customer, not simply advertising to them. A small logo on each page, for instance, sufficiently brands the PDF without being overwhelming.
· Consider Formatting – What order will the information be in? Will there be a table of contents? Does the page need a border, or will the information be organized in a specific way? Think about what the customer would expect and find useful, as they’ll want to easily and efficiently access information they need.
· Proofread Carefully – After the PDF is designed, proofread carefully to look for any mistakes. Mistakes can be in the images, the formatting, or the text. If possible, have someone else look over the PDF to see if they can spot any errors and provide feedback.
· Create the PDF – Create the PDF using software designed for this purpose. Most of the software is simple to use for PDF formatting. Once the final document is ready, most programs will convert and export the PDF from an existing document. There is also dedicated PDF development software, which allows for more detailed changes to formatting and layout before the PDF is created.
· Inspect for Errors – Before adding it to the website, check the entire document one more time for any errors. It is also useful to include a brief description of what’s included to help the visitor and even boost the keyword-focused content on your website.
Use Software Or Get Professional Help: Which is Better?
Business owners can take advantage of apps or software to create a PDF. They can also take advantage of professional assistance through a marketing service. Both are excellent options, though each has its own unique advantages and limitations, which should be carefully considered before a decision is made
DIY options are ample, and software ranges from the more basic to advanced. Anyone can use the software to create their own PDF, and this is definitely the most economic option; the only cost is that of the software used to export the document as a PDF.
The downside to this DIY approach is the potential for errors. The PDF may lack the professional touch that’s needed to make the right impression.
Hiring a professional creates the opportunity to have a stunning PDF created for any requirement or topic on the website. Professional PDF designers provide assistance with branding, layout, look, text content, data, and more.
The main downside for hiring a professional is the cost, but many business owners find it a well-justified investment for the impression it leaves on customers.
As a business owner, you know how crucial it is to not only get people to visit your website but to stay and interact. This enables them to become more familiar with the business and make a purchase.
Creating PDFs is an excellent way to accomplish this. And just about any business can make use of downloadable PDFs to boost their brand, encourage user-engagement, and build their customer and marketing contact lists.
To gain such advantages in the most efficient way possible, consider working with a professional to create stunning branded PDFs. Your visitors and customers will be impressed and informed, and that means even broader benefits for your company.