8 Quick Ways to Update an Outdated Website
Entrepreneurship demands substantial time and focus. There are so many responsibilities to take care of that it’s easy to fall into a “set it and forget it” mindset when it comes to your website. Unfortunately, this is a quick way to lose the attention of potential clients and customers.
Think of your website as a digital business card. This is the first stop for someone interested in the services or products you offer. Additionally, search engines favor websites that are well maintained and up to date. That means you’re likely to appear higher in search results for keywords that pertain to your business.
If you’re in a highly competitive industry (think real estate or sales), it’s essential to put your best foot forward. The more clicks you get, the more likely you are to drum up new business. Ready to get to work? Here are eight quick ways to improve your website today.
1. Update Your Design to Reflect Current Trends
Like anything else, web trends come and go as technology improves. The design of your website should reflect today’s style.
This should include a user-friendly navigation bar and several different pages or sections that explain who you are, the services you provide, and the best way to get in touch. A digital portfolio that demonstrates your expertise is also helpful to have.
While an eye-catching color palette or custom graphics are beneficial, the most important part of website design is having clean and concise formatting.
2. Start a Blog
Blogging is no longer considered a diary for YouTubers and other online personalities. Maintaining a high-quality blog with relevant industry information is one of the best forms of digital marketing.
According to search engine data, having a blog on your website increases your chances of ranking higher by a staggering 434%.
While it may feel like a daunting task, use your expert knowledge to produce content that will inform. Average blog posts fall somewhere between 1,000 and 2,000 words, but there are many ways to simplify the process. Posts in the form of lists perform well, making it easy to provide results-driven content.
3. Take Advantage of SEO Practices
SEO stands for “search engine optimization.” Although the term focuses on website traffic, SEO is customer-centric. It enables us to better understand what people are searching for and the types of content they prefer to engage with.
Although you can hire an SEO professional to assist with keyword research and analytics, there are several free and low-cost tools available. Keywords are phrases that people search for if they’re browsing businesses like yours. Using the right keywords thoughtfully will help your website rank higher in a search.
Be sure to end each blog post with a powerful CTA (call-to-action). This is a short phrase that encourages your audience to take a certain step. Whether this is making an appointment or a purchase, it typically includes a clickable link. Most marketing professionals also encourage making your CTA easy to find with bold fonts, contrast colors, or a button.
4. Include Visual Multimedia and Tools
Gone are the days of long blocks of text and a simple stock photo. Websites have come a long way, and today, they’re interactive and highly dependent on multimedia.
Whether your industry lends itself to video or other forms of imagery, look for opportunities to create an engaging experience for your website visitors.
For example, a real estate agent may choose to incorporate a user-friendly commission calculator. A retailer may use interactive shopping cart buttons to engage with customers browsing for items.
5. Check for Responsiveness and Speed
Slow websites can instantly distract from even the greatest content. If users find it difficult to move across the various sections of your website, they’re more likely to close the browser. Click through your pages and ensure they’re responsive and loading in a timely manner.
In addition to engaging people instantly, a faster website will appear higher in search engines. Again, modern technology makes it imperative to keep up with trends and usefulness.
6. Make It Mobile Friendly
We all spend more time on our phones than ever before. When people visit your website from a mobile device, can they navigate with ease? If not, you risk losing their attention before they even find the information they need.
A professional web designer can work with you to create a website that has the right formatting across the board, regardless of device type. If you’re looking to do it on your own, there are templates available through providers such as WordPress, Weebly, and Wix.
7. Capture Visitor Information
Who are your visitors? What are they looking for? How can you help them?
These are important questions to answer because it will impact your business, let alone the content you provide.
Give your website visitors a way to stay in touch. For example, request an email address with the promise of special offers or business updates. This can be in the form of a pop-up or a designated box at the bottom of the page.
Don’t forget to also include links to your various social media pages. This is another great way to stay in touch with your customers or clients.
8. Monitor Your Competitors
Keep an eye on the competition to ensure you’re offering the ideal experience for your customers (both on and off your website).
Identify which companies are like yours and visit their websites from time to time to uncover any new tactics or features. Although you want to stand out, it’s important to know that you’re keeping up with other businesses in your industry.
Put Your Best Foot Forward
After you’ve revamped your website, it’s important to maintain it. Set a date to review it once per month. This can be a simple run-through to ensure all of your links are working and loading times are optimal. In addition, set an annual review date to freshen your content and build a plan for blog posts and other additions to your website.