Posted on October 22, 2014
It’s Time To Take A Fresh Look At Your Website
If you have a website, then you want your products and services to be seen by as many prospects online as possible. While marketing strategies through social media are essential to your visibility, it really pays to have a professional website that visitors will convert those visitors to sales and make them want to return to again and again.
If you have not updated your company’s website in a while, it’s time to take a look at implementing a fresher and more appealing design that is effective for today’s social-driven online world. It’s important to choose the right web developer and designer for this process, and not settle for a run-of-the-mill service that could hurt your business reputation.
When a visitor comes your landing page it only takes them just a few seconds to decide whether it is worth checking out further. This means you need to capture their attention right away, and create a website that is eye catching, inviting, easy to follow, and answers their questions. Once you have attracted these leads it is much easier to convert them into sales.
There are several important steps yo take whether you are creating a website from scratch or redesigning a new one in order to be successful in the online marketing world.
Here are some ways to have an online presence your visitors will love:
Determine your target market
In your initial assessment it is a good idea to research who your audience is and learn more about what they are looking for. I have written a very specific article on this, which provides steps and resources to follow. From this place you will discover their ‘pain points,’ which will help determine what approach to take to solve their problem(s).
Create a search-friendly URL
Depending on whether you are an individual or business your brand will need to be accurately reflected in a way that utilizes a search term that is clear and concise. For example, I have created a brand under my name, Susan Gilbert, and this is clearly reflected in my URL. Added symbols, numbers, ect. can be confusing to someone conducting search online. And if you already have a website URL, it is important to have a clear directory structure of your posts and pages that search engines will recognize.
This is a recent website example that I completed, which shows the author’s book title with well defined pages to follow:
And another example from this website completed earlier this year, which now ranks number one on Google for her company name/brand:
Consider using WordPress for your website
Sometimes hosting services will allow users to create a landing page from their own in-house website builders. While this can be a fine start it should not be the end goal for a professional website. One of the best and easiest tools available is WordPress. Even though some coding is required this platform allows for thousands of templates and plugins to choose from and customize for the best look possible. Since WordPress is automatically built for meta-data and tags it is far easier to optimized your landing page for search with the help of plugins for SEO.
Create a mobile-friendly website
With so many people searching and shopping right from their smart phones and tablets these days it is more important than ever to make your website easy to find and navigate on these devices. If you are using WordPress there are plugins and even templates available depending on what your business is offering. This is another recent example from a wholesale retail website I just completed, which offers products to businesses:
Wald Imports was using a very old and unappealing design (in Joomla) with poor SEO practices in place and little to no social media presence. The new site launched only one week ago and we are already seeing significant positive results.
If your business already has a website in place take a look at what this looks like on all devices including a desktop, laptop, and mobile. This will help you learn more of what needs to be more improved for your visitors.
Use tracking codes to measure ROI
A company website that allows for sales or shopping can greatly benefit from the use of WordPress plugins that allow for the tracking of funds through PPC ad campaigns on Google. This greatly reduces the setup time for analytics on each product, and can be integrated right into Google Adwords.
If your brand or business already has a website in place then following these will help you improve the overall design and search engine elements to make it a success. It may be well worth the time to transfer over to a platform like WordPress in order to easily transition into something more professional and powerful. A new website presence will take some research in determining the correct URL, but the above process is still the same.
Upgrading your website is big step in building your business. It is important to work with a company that provides not only the web design and development expertise, but also a thorough knowledge of online marketing, including social media. A reference and portfolio should be made available, as well as a proven track record of excellent work.
This is something I can provide through my web development firm, Online Promotion Success, Inc. We have many satisfied clients and examples, including this one from the authors of The Joy of Skinny:
Clear branding is important because it reflects the mission of your company, and opens the door to new opportunities and sales. A well-planned and executed website when done properly is your business’s calling card, and it needs to stand out from the rest in order to be successful. If your website looks old and weary, your prospects might think you and your business are as well. Stay fresh.