Managing the Details
Maintaining a business website is a necessity and it’s also a lot of work. Efforts to improve your website are ongoing. You very likely understand this already, and if you don’t, you will soon enough. A website is worth the work because it’s a great tool that lets you connect with customers and potential customers while telling your story in your words. There is certainly value to a business website, but there’s also a lot of details and busy work.
These details may seem insignificant, but the thing is, they add up. Failing to address the details can make your site look sloppy or unprofessional. Below are 7 details that will improve your website and make the site look pulled together and professional.
Create the Right Image
Your site represents your business and it is an opportunity to use your brand voice. Failing to keep your site up-to-date or missing out on some of these details will send the wrong message. Visitors may leave your site rather quickly if your site is low quality, out-of-date or riddled with errors. A professional and current business website speaks to the level of care and quality customers can expect when they work with your team.
Tips to Improve Your Website
1. Site Icon
Site icons go by many names, including shortcut icon, website icon, tab icon, URL icon, favicon and more. Basically, this is a tiny icon that appears on browser tabs, bookmark bars and other locations as indicated by the various names. It’s a subtle detail that makes your site look legit. It also provides value. If a user has multiple tabs open, they’ll see your site icon and be able to easily navigate back to that tab. The site icon is also an opportunity to highlight your logo and branding. A site icon is part of a cohesive brand aesthetic.
Pro tip: make sure the icon is properly sized. For WordPress, that means at least 512 x 512 pixels. While it looks bad having a generic icon, it looks worse having a wonky icon that isn’t properly sized.
Broken links are a reality of websites. Despite your best efforts, something will happen and you’ll end up with a link (or 5) to nowhere. Routinely check links to ensure they are active and lead to the proper destination. This allows your site to function as intended while providing a good user experience and allowing your SEO efforts to pay out.
While checking links can be a great mindless and yet still productive activity to get through a slow Friday afternoon, you can save yourself some time by using a link checker. There are lots of free options available that can easily zero in on broken links.
3. Social Media Links
This sort of fails into the same category as broken links discussed above, but it’s important enough to warrant its own section. Check icons leading to your social media accounts to confirm they are still active. These links are only effective if they work.
Since social media directs people away from your site, it seems counterintuitive to improve your website by linking to your social accounts, but it keeps customers in your orbit.
Find Your People
While on the topic of directing visitors to your social media accounts, don’t feel compelled to link to every social media site out there. Certain social media sites may not be your thing and it may not make sense for you to maintain accounts on some platforms. If your demographic is on LinkedIn, then you definitely need to connect to that site. Or if your customers are on TikTok then you absolutely want to be on that platform. If you are not gaining traction from specific platforms, then it may not be worth your time to be there.
Furthermore, double-check that you have recent posts. If you are not somewhat consistently posting, then you may not want to direct people to your social accounts. Or, you may want to bring in some help to create engaging posts that will keep your customers informed and interacting with your brand (get in touch and I can help).
4. Dated References
This is both literal and figurative. Any references to time should be accurate and correct. For example, let’s say on the ‘About Us’ page is the following text, ‘we started out in 2009 and it’s been an amazing 10 years!’ It’s been more than 10 years since 2009 and it’s apparent that it has also been a while since this text was reviewed.
The solution here is to update the text so it will not become dated. Going back to my example, just leave it as, ‘we started out in 2009,’ and remove the part about how long it’s been since 2009. Maybe throw in, ‘it’s been amazing ever since!’ This way, the text will always be correct and no ongoing updates will be necessary.
Figuratively dated references can be text that mentions something that is no longer timely or relevant. Slang and expressions change with time. Maybe when you first launched your site the text was on point, but now it may look dated.
Using slang or jargon isn’t necessarily a problem, but it’s worth considering the impact before you start pumping your website text full of slang that readers may not understand in five years. Colloquialisms, slang and casual text are often more at home in newsletters and social media posts.
5. About Us
Including a brief write up to introduce you and your team members helps personalize your business and makes it easy for people to connect with your team. Make sure information is current so your customers can put faces to the names. If you reference someone as being the newest member of your team, but that was five years ago and you’ve added 10 employees since then, that needs to be fixed.
Periodically go through and review this section to ensure information is still correct and everything is up to date. Add bios and photos of new team members, likewise, remove any one who is no longer part of the team.
Before posting photos of team members to your site, make sure to get written consent and have team members sign a photo release.
Update the copyright information at the bottom of the page. You may be able to use code that will automatically update the text to the current year so future updates are unnecessary. This can be a time-saver and keep everything current. If not, set yourself a reminder in your calendar to update the year in the footer your first day back after New Year’s Day.
Maybe it’s been a while since you published anything on your blog. We’ve all been there. It doesn’t look so great when a prospective customer comes to your site, checks out your blog and sees that the last post is from three years ago. Make it a habit to post on a regular schedule. Visitors will find new information and understand that you are engaged and available. Another perk of a new blog post is that it gives you something to share on social media.
Good Help Is Easy to Find
If you find it impossible to keep up with blog content then you may want to consider bringing in some help. I can review your site and put together a plan to ensure you have quality content on a consistent schedule. I’ll create posts that address the questions and pain points your customers have while also factoring in SEO keywords and best practices.
Regular blog content is an opportunity to keep your brand relevant and front of mind with your customers while also introducing your brand to a new wave of potential customers via SEO. I can help you make this happen.
Please reach out and we can discuss ways to improve your website and help your brand connect with customers.