A yoga website should include many standard business website features such as branding, photographs, and testimonials. Then depending on the way a yoga business is being run, it will need some unique elements, such as the ability to book classes online or buy courses. Here is a comprehensive list of features to include on your yoga website.
I’ve included this first because it’s typically something you want to get right before adding all the other things on this list. Make sure that the website builder, theme, and any plugins (like booking software) you’re using are mobile responsive. What does a responsive design mean? Basically, your website looks good, works, and loads quickly on all devices; mobile, tablet, and desktop devices.
So many people use mobile these days to search the web. As a Yoga teacher, you’re likely driving traffic to your website through your social media community (at least to start with), so you need to ensure people can use your website easily on all devices. If your website isn’t mobile responsive, there is a good chance you’re losing leads and new clients!
I’m sure you’ve visited a website on your mobile where a pop-up jumped up quickly, and then the “X” was off-screen, so you couldn’t get rid of it to see the website. Annoying right?! Or the text was too small on your mobile device that you couldn’t read it. Another common example is having images or text cut off completely. You want to avoid all these types of things!
In many website builders, you will design the desktop version, and then it will automatically create mobile responsive versions of your website. This is great as it saves time but often means you have limited control over the mobile experience; sometimes, this is frustrating. Typically with website design, we think of the desktop as the visual masterpiece and then are happy with a stripped-down mobile version that is clear and functions well in this format.
My favorite website builder, Showit, gives the designer full control of both the desktop and mobile experiences. This has its own pros and cons. The pro is that you have fun design control which typically means you can create a more visually striking mobile experience. The con is that it can take longer and needs more work to design; unless, of course, you buy a pre-made website template, so the majority of this nitty-gritty work will be done for you!
Maintaining consistent branding is a struggle common to small business owners DIYing everything themselves. Using a consistent design strategy across your website and social media will help you to stand out and look more professional. While a brand designer can help with this as it’s their specialty, you can still DIY this easily by following these tips:
Include photos of you practicing yoga, a smiling headshot for your about page and, if possible, images of you teaching yoga. An image says a thousand words. Using custom photography on your website rather than stock photos makes you look more authentic and professional. Also, who doesn’t want some gorgeous tree pose photos of themselves?
When choosing poses to include, consider who you’re trying to attract. All good yoga teachers know that it’s not about the depth of a pose or getting it perfect. It’s about finding a balance between showing your skills (not showing off!) and connecting with the viewer. Is the pose you’re presenting realistic to what your audience is looking to achieve?
For example, if you’re targeting beginner students, an advanced pose such as pincha mayurasana may be off-putting to a visitor. They might see it as intimidating rather than encouraging, think, “I could never do that!” and find another teacher. However, this may be perfectly suitable for more advanced students or if it’s a pose you work towards in a class series. Use this as a time to check in with yourself; are you letting your ego jump in to show what you can do, or are you serving your audience?
Every yoga website should include a way for new and existing clients to book your services! This can easily be done by embedding scheduling and booking systems into your website. You will want this feature if you teach yoga live or online.
A popular yoga teacher monetization option these days is to sell online courses. These are great as you can sell them over and over again. If you plan on selling courses, you will want to include a landing page for people to learn about the benefits your course will have for them with a call-to-action for them to buy it.
You will also need a place to host your course. This could be as simple as a password-protected page on your website with videos and PDFs embedded into it. Alternatively, you can use a course delivery platform like Thinkific or Teachable. Full disclosure, I haven’t used either of these to build a course; they’re just popular choices. If you’re going down this route, do your homework and determine what you need because they can get pricey if you start out.
If I was to make a course, my first choice would probably be Thrivecart as it’s the payment system I currently use for selling website templates, and they have a course feature. Before you get carried away with the fancy features, think like you’re in beta mode and see what’s available to you in your budget. Once you have a proven course that sells, you can upgrade to something fancier and more expensive (if you choose).
If you have some products to sell, include an e-commerce shop on your yoga teacher’s website. This should be a secondary consideration if your primary goal is to teach yoga live or online. If you know a shop is something you will definitely want to include later, then when you’re deciding where to make your yoga website look into the e-commerce compatibilities of each website builder.
For example, does the web builder have a native e-commerce feature, or can you add a plugin? Think about what delivery method you will offer; digital products, drop shipping, or will you handle shipping yourself? The answers will affect which website builder has the best options for you.
As well as booking, you want to be able to collect payments online. If you’re teaching online, this is a given. However, running an in-person class will make it easier for both you and the customers when they show up to class, as you don’t need to worry about payment before or after when everyone is rushing or relaxed. Many booking systems will have payment systems in-built. The key to an effective payment system is you want to make it as easy as possible for people to give you money, so include all the options you can.
Testimonials help build trust with viewers. Bonus points if you can get some clients to make video testimonials for you! As a website designer, I often see sites with pages dedicated to testimonials. It’s great to see them being included! However, a more effective way to use testimonials is to scatter them throughout your website so viewers see them naturally rather than needing to go to a dedicated page.
If you have a lot of testimonials, by all means, create a page for them. They might help impress potential new clients. But also make sure you’re including them across your website.
Like testimonials, showing your education, credentials, awards, and continuing professional education evidence are great ways to build trust with your audience. Unless something is really notable, I wouldn’t recommend going overboard with these on your site. Including them in about sections and badges in your footer will be sufficient. Remember, ultimately, your website is not about you; it’s about your audience and how you can help them.
Don’t make the mistake of having an email sign-up box that simply says, “sign up to my newsletter to…” This is a waste of time if you’re serious about building your audience online. You will probably get some supportive friends, family members, and existing clients to join, but someone who doesn’t know you is very unlikely to sign up.
An email inbox is valuable real estate in the online business world. An invitation into someone’s inbox means they are interested in something you have to offer and gives you a chance to get to know them better. Think about an entry-level offer you can give that ties into your regular teaching services and offer this instead in exchange for them signing up for your newsletter list.
People tend to need to see something several times before they buy (traditional marketing methods say the magic number is seven!) Getting traffic to your website will be the hardest and most time-consuming part, so once you’ve got someone there, don’t lose them so frivolously. Offer them something valuable to keep the conversation going.
Once they sign up, be sure you keep that conversation going by offering value, not just sales. Kate Doster is an email marketing whiz. She has a free training you can check out here on how you can grow your email marketing subscribers without being spammy.
Social media links are another feature a yoga website should include to build a following across platforms and have people connect with you. However, often social media buttons are overly prominent on websites. As we discussed above, getting traffic to your website is the hard part, so don’t send them away immediately.
Including social media icons in your footer and contact pages is sufficient. Today most people know to look there for social icons anyway. If you’re big on growing on Instagram, a banner with photos and a “Follow” call to action that links back to your IG page is also an attractive website feature. Again, put this at the bottom of your website pages.
In addition to having social media links that direct people back to your social media pages, including social share buttons on content pages. Social share buttons make it easy for people to share your blog posts and content that they find interesting on their social media pages. This helps you get in front of new audiences and is a great signal to search engine algorithms that your content is useful.
Make it easy for people to get in touch and find you! If you teach in-person yoga classes, include a map. It’s surprising how so many small businesses that require people to visit them in person don’t include location information easily visible on their websites.
If you have a yoga studio, make sure your location is in your footer and a contact page link. If you serve people in a specific location, be clear about this in the above-the-fold section of your homepage, so people know they’re in the right place (or not).
Last but definitely not least, include educational content on your website. This can be in the form of blog posts and/or videos. Diary-style blogs and vlogs can be useful in connecting with an existing audience, but times are changing, and you’re more likely to grow your website traffic with educational content.
A 2021 study exploring consumer behavior online found that products with high involvement and feeling people tend to follow a Feel-Learn-Do process during their search and buying process. High involvement and thinking products follow a Learn-Learn-Feel-Do behavior pattern.
As a yoga teacher, think about how you can create content that helps people learn and connect with their emotions to make it easy for people to decide to pay for your services. Come back to the Yoga values of services when designing your content plan. This will also help you connect with your tribe more easily as your content is authentically value driven.
Now that you know what your yoga website should include to help you stand out, communicate your offers and get more leads online, read these 11 steps to make a yoga website yourself with ease and get started today!
Adrianne Jerrett is a yoga-loving self-awareness writer and the founder of Jerrett Digital, a brand identity and design company that creates bold Showit websites for health and wellness professionals and ethical businesses. She helps overwhelmed entrepreneurs shift to being aligned and confident experts, ready to grow their businesses online and boost their positive impact.
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