Whether your website is a year old or ten years old, it is probably time for a detailed audit. If you want your website to be as productive as possible and contribute to the growth of your company, then you need to think of it as a living entity. If you don’t, it will become stale and look outdated sooner than you think!
The most productive thing you can do to keep current customers and attract new ones, is to change or add to your content often. Below are five questions to ask yourself when taking a close look at your site. Often, these are quick updates that can extend the life of your site and in turn, your business.
1. Do the Photos Still Reflect Your Business or Do They Look Outdated?
One of the first things visitors to your site see are the photos. They are what grab your attention no matter how much descriptive wording you have. Photos are easy to replace and often a less expensive way to quickly freshen up your site. Take a few moments to page through your site and closely examine each photo. If they don’t really reflect the product or services they are associated with, odds are the viewer will see the same thing. It could ultimately affect the overall perception of what you do. People have a much shorter visual attention span these days due to social media, so a great photo could be the first step in inviting a site visitor to learn more about what you do.
Quick Tip: Always negotiate to have the right to photograph and display your work if you have a tangible service that you can document with photos. This will ensure that you always have fresh content to pull from in your digital library.
2. Do the Topics Cover the Goods/Services You Now Offer?
Too often businesses change or add to their scope of work, yet don’t update their site to reflect that. Your website is your electronic “sales person,” so be sure that all that you offer is clearly visible. You will be surprised how often service descriptions can become outdated. Have you added any new type of work to your business? Your website is a perfect place to convey that news and entice the viewer to learn more about your company and all of the things that you do.
Quick Tip: If you have received any recent awards, certifications or have other “new” news, it’s a quick way to make your site look very up-to-date!
3. Is There Any Information That Is No Longer Relevant That Should Be Revised or Removed?
There is nothing more frustrating for a potential customer than to search for a product or service, land on your site, engage with you, and then find out you are no longer involved with that area of work. Some businesses don’t realize that it’s acceptable to completely remove a section from their site. Different portions of a site are usually originally put in place with good ideas and intent, but if you can’t keep those sections relevant, then it’s time to take them down.
Quick Tip: Mark your calendar to do a quick website “audit” the last day of every month. It will do more than ensure that your website is up-to-date. Often it will bring to mind other aspects of your business that have not been at the forefront and may need your attention.
4. Have You Updated Your Contact Information and Made Sure That All of the Links Still Work?
Believe it or not, a good majority of websites have contact pages that either lead nowhere or the contact forms just don’t work. You have to think of your contact page as your “welcome mat.” If potential customers are trying to reach out to you, it’s imperative that their first interaction with you is a positive one. Too often companies don’t even list a person, but rather an “info” address. A great way to be perceived as being more approachable is to at least have a name or two that people can reach out to directly for information or engage in conversation. While you are at it, make sure your social media links are working, as well!
Quick Tip: Have a few friends or relatives take a moment to try out the contact information on your site. Get their honest feedback on their experience trying to contact you or your company.
5. Have You Tested Your Site on a Phone Lately?
According to Statista, more than 52% of all website traffic worldwide in 2018 was generated through mobile phones. And that number has been going up steadily every year. Simply put, this means if your website isn’t “mobile-friendly” you are potentially missing out on more than half of the potential site traffic (and potential customers) that you could be getting.
You should also know that Google regularly tests all websites for mobile readability and if they determine that your site doesn’t work well on phones and other small screens your site may not come up in the search results on those devices.
Quick Tip: If you need to “pinch-zoom” to read your website, it’s not mobile-friendly! Consider upgrading your site to “responsive” design, which automatically sizes and organizes site content based on the screen it’s being displayed on.