With smart phones becoming more and more economical people are searching the internet from their cellphones. If you have a smart phone go to your site’s URL address and see what it looks like. If you can’t view it or it is impossible to navigate you need to add a mobile site or change your site so that it is viewable on smart phones and tablets. If you choose to add a mobile version of your site make sure it is easy to navigate. Big buttons and the pertinent information right there on the home page. When people are on the go your site needs to provide them with what they are looking for quickly or they will go somewhere else. If your site is not mobile or tablet friendly your missing out on a HUGE demographic.
This is one of the most important questions you should be asking yourself. Most small businesses constantly run promotions and need content on their site to change. It is very annoying and expensive to have to call a web designer every time you want to change a few sentences and add a picture. Your site should really be run through a CMS (Content Management System) like Joomla or WordPress. This allows you to enter a password protected back end to your site and change any content. This will save you so much time and money for adding and taking things off of your site. If you can’t change your content yourself you need to upgrade your website.
Have you had the same exact content on your site since 2005? If so I think it is time for a change. The more content and useful information you have on your site, the more pages you’ll have indexed on google and the more likely you are to have traffic on your site. The best way to continually provide content to your site goers is to have a blog. Every blog post you have will be an extra line out there to catch some clients. It is very important to provide people with good, well written content… otherwise why are they on your site? If you got them once… odds are they will not return if you provide them with nothing. If you have no dynamic content on your site you should get some. I guarantee your competitors already have it.
I think it is safe to say that this social media craze isn’t going away anytime soon. Facebook and Twitter are essential for any business these days. It is instant access to MILLIONS of potential clients. At the very least you need to have links to your social media accounts. A facebook and twitter icon is okay… streaming your twitter and or facebook feed is better. You should be active on social media and use it to your advantage. A YouTube channel is amazing for your website as well. It allows you to upload videos easily to your YouTube account and to stream them easily on your website. If you have no video… Try and find a way to get some. People would much rather watch a video about your product or service than to read a lengthy description about it. Having yourself on all these social media channels will also greatly help your SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Millions of people discover new businesses on their “News Feed” because friends “Checked In” or “Liked” them.
At the very least you must have a way for potential clients to contact you. A phone number and an email address are the very least you can do. It is vital for your company’s marketing for you to capture data of potential clients and to store it for future use. A simple contact form will allow your clients to ask you any questions they may have and also will store their name, email address and phone number for future marketing campaigns. You should also entice your site visitors to fill out those forms. Offer free coupons or other promotions to join lists and you’ll see an increase in potential client data streaming in. If you don’t have any contact forms on your site, you should add them as quick as you can, because you are not getting the most out of your site.
The best way to know the answer to this is to view your competition. If you own an Italian Restaurant in Cherry Hill, search “Italian Restaurant, Cherry Hill,” in Google and see what your competition looks like. How do you compare? Objectively compare the sites and see where you would want to eat. If you can’t compare, it may be time to polish the old website up a little. It is amazing how much a new logo and a simple design can change the credibility of a business. The other huge way to gain or lose credibility is through review sites. Yelp! and Citysearch are two of the biggest. These sites are lists of companies and client reviews of the products and services they offer. Even if your business does not have an account others can list you and kill your business with awful reviews. Make sure to have yourself listed on those sites and constantly monitor and respond to bad reviews. Peer reviews are a huge part of potential clients decision making, you have to at least be in that conversation.
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is extremely vital to the success of a website. You could have an amazing site but if people can’t find it how does that help your business? Make sure whomever you use to make your site code it properly to be indexed by search engines. They should also provide you with a Google Analytics account to track your traffic, and place Meta Keywords and Descriptions in your back end code. It is also important to have relevant content that people will be searching. For example this blog post is titled “Do You Need A New Website?” That is a logical search term for my business to use in order to find potential clients. Your site should be filled with words and phrases commonly searched by your target audience. Lastly if your business targets a specific area it is IMPERATIVE to have those areas listed on your website. If you only do business in Philadelphia, then make sure you have Philadelphia Pa written throughout your site. If your current site is not Search Engine Optimized, fix it.