When was the last time you updated your website?
In the last week/month/year?
Erm… you don’t really update your website?
Well, if I told you that this could be costing you potential customers, would you give it priority?
Your website is your company’s shop window; it’s THE place to pull in any passing trade and stop them in their tracks. And if your website’s untidy, complicated, difficult to navigate and unappealing, then potential passing trade will just scroll on by.
So what can you do?
You can start by working through this 11 point checklist and doing what feels right for you…
1. Master the basics
Understanding how to do basic website updates is a must. I’m not talking about anything complicated here, so don’t worry. I’m talking about adding new blog posts, images, setting up a new page, that kind of thing. If you’re really scared about getting into the back office, then find a reliable web designer who’ll do the job quickly and properly for you.
2. Ensure your social media links open in separate windows
This means that your website page stays open when the link takes browsers off to your Facebook biz page. So even if they drift off for a while and wonder how they’ve ended up there (we’ve all done it, haven’t we?), they’ll be jolted back to reality when they see your website on their open tab.
3. Blog, blog and blog some more…
Blogging is a great way to get in front of your crowd, show your expertise and persuade people to connect with you, but it’s also a fab way to sprinkle some regular freshness into your website. Brilliant blogs, filled with rich content, attention-grabbing headlines, sassy images and the odd keywords here and there will really attract the attention of those hairy little Google spiders (who are always hungry for new content and will reward you with a higher page ranking on Google).
4. Add a video – because people buy from people
Allowing people to see the face behind the brand in a short but sweet video can really make a difference to your website and your business. Apparently, you have between 2 and 4 seconds to grab someone’s attention, and a video could just be the hook that pulls people in. Having a colourful range of content (text, imagery and video) is also a good move if you want your website to get noticed.
5. Include a great “About” page.
Commonly overlooked, and one of the most influential pages on your website, this is your chance to shine. No modesty allowed here, either. It’s the only page that’s about you so tell them your story, show them you’re a real person, explain what makes you tick and share the kind of results you get for your clients.
6. Check that everything is up to date
This is so essential, particularly because our business grows and evolves all the time. So it’s a good idea to regularly look at your website with fresh eyes. Check the links. Remove any outdated products/services that you don’t offer anymore. If something doesn’t align with where you are right now, get rid. Double check that your social media links work properly and that your phone number’s the same and email addresses haven’t changed.
7. Optimise for mobile
Most visitors to your site will do so via their mobile device, so it’s crucial to have a mobile-friendly site. It needs to be easy to navigate, look good on the smaller screen and have working, clickable links. If you’re unsure whether your website looks good on a mobile device, pop over here and put in your web address:
8. Include contact details
It’s a legal requirement and it’s reassuring for the customer to see your contact details (phone number and email address at the very least). Add a contact form, too, to help them get in touch with you the super easy way.
9. Add social media share buttons
If it’s easy for people to share your content, they will. This will expand your reach and potentially encourage new visitors to your site. What’s not to love?
10. Capture data
It takes about 7 touches (or visits) before someone decides to buy from you but that doesn’t mean you can’t capture people’s data on the first visit. Create an irresistible freebie that your website visitors will fall over themselves to sign up for, add them to your subscriber list and get schmoozing with them through your newsletters and email marketing campaigns. Job’s a good ‘un.
11. Get the Google Analytics Plug-in
It’s all very well getting your website spick and span, but you also need to know that it’s working properly. Websites aren’t just about looking good and Google Analytics is a fab tool that will give you all sorts of rich data. You’ll discover how many people have visited your site, how long they stayed, which pages they spent the most time on and how long it was before they clicked off. You can use this valuable information to create new blogs or fix pages that are being ignored (or delete them altogether).
And that, my friend, is that.
Remember that first impressions do count. A staid old, tired website gives the impression that you really can’t be bothered. So show visitors that you are bothered. Update your website regularly and you’ll get the results you’re hoping for.
If you’re looking for help to get your website updated, made over and spring cleaned any time soon, then please feel free to get in touch.
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