Marketing in today's world is driven more and more by social media, with social networking sites (SNS) growing in seemingly endless popularity. Sites such as Twitter, LinkedIn and even Facebook are now used by more organizations than ever before. Lost in this "brave new world" of marketing, however, is the fact that a company's website is still an important component of its online presence.
If you don't have a vibrant and engaging website, you're doing your brand a grave disservice. Let's face it: Whether you sell a product or provide a service, building and maintaining the integrity of your brand is critical the success, if not outright survival, of your enterprise. Hence, the need for a strong web presence.
Is your online presence in need of a website redesign? Have you decided it does but aren't sure what it needs? The following checklist should help you in either case.
Even a website can benefit from a buyer persona, especially if it's in need of a redesign. Before you start implementing new design and capturing even more leads from your website, you need to understand who is coming to your website and what exactly they are looking for and in order to do that, you need to be able to create a buyer persona for each of the biggest segments of your customer base.
Website redesign projects start at the buyer persona, this has been established, but how exactly can you create a persona and capture those most wanted leads?
Well, there are seven key questions to answer and some research that's first and foremost.
7 Buyer Persona Questions
In order to kick-start your persona prospects research, you will need to ask yourself (and your staff working on the website redesign) some questions that must be answered as if you're the lead landing on your website. Try to get in their head to answer these crucial questions:
Once you have created an extensive profile from these questions, you can now start implementing solutions which focus on points that you want to highlight in your website redesign. Ideally, you should create at least five different personality profiles which can all find what they're looking for on your brand new website.
However, it is more than just creating a persona and calling it a day. You need to be able tweak and change profiles to continue to enrich your customer's experience and provide the best leads for your website. One way to do this is through an extra question not normally part of the seven questions above, but is still very important: what experience is your customer seeking?
You need to able to provide a memorable experience through your services, and a customer will be seeking out that type of commitment whether they know it or not. Be able to go above and beyond by implementing it as part of your persona strategy and you will continually see success with your website redesign!
When redesigning your website, you should be consciously aware of Google and other search engines in the website's content. Search Engine Optimization, making popular keywords appear throughout your text and perhaps a blog that explains more about your business in periodic updates, is all important in a strong website redesign. Here are some tips to help make your business' website gain the attention it needs.
Build Up Strong Keywords
When writing content for a webpage, certain keywords (popular search terms likely to be entered into a search engine) should be implemented throughout the text. Make sure these keywords are relevant to your business. Target keywords should be included a certain number of times in a webpage or blog post as the more instances of it blended into the text naturally, the more likely your page is to show up first in the rankings when the keyword is searched.
Short tail keywords can be used, which are much more general when describing your product or service. These typically include 1-3 words that are general search terms. Long tail keywords, using 3-6 words, can also be used to be more specific about what your business does. Any keyword including model numbers, specific brand names or other details pertaining to the business exclusively, can be used effectively as well.
Focusing on a single keyword per page or blog post is ideal, making your website appear natural and not like you're shoving keyword after keyword into your post. Your marketing techniques should be invisible to the customer, whose focus should really lie on the company itself.
A digital marketing agency will most likely recommend a 1% maximum keyword density per blog post, which means that a 400 words blog post should contain no more than 4 times the same keyword. Beyond that, it will look weird, will most likely sound weird and may even be flagged by Google as "keyword stuffer" which is a big no-no in search optimization.
Can you tell which keyword this blog post is focusing on? If it jumps at you, then it's too much or will occur as un-natural, but if you have to kind of guess, then we did our job well.
Have a Blogging Strategy
A solid blogging strategy can offer a lot of information to customers while keeping your website from becoming a mess of information. Blogs can be updated daily to weekly and keep customers updated on what it is your business does. Each blog post can also allow a specific keyword, with hundreds of long tail and short term keywords being added to your blog, and therefore making your site more likely to appear at the top of search results.
A successfully-run blog can feature updates on new company information as well as general information that lets customers know more about what it is exactly that your business does and has to provide them. Offers and eBooks can be distributed via blog post or on websites, integrating keyword usage within the text and furthering your website redesign optimization.
Here is an interesting fact about blogs: "Companies that blog 15 or more times per month get 5 times more traffic than companies that don't blog"
(source: Hubspot - Marketing Benchmarks from 7000 businesses)
Optimize Images and Hyperlinks
Adding tags to every image can assure that when people search for a picture online, ones appearing on your blog or website can be found more easily. Images can also be navigated more easily within the blog with effective tagging.
Including relevant hyperlinks, either to other blogs/pages on your own website or to outside webpages, will not only make your website even simpler to navigate for information, but will also allow for a good inbound marketing strategy. The more links to other relevant sites, the more your webpage connects to the rest of the Internet instead of sitting stagnant in isolation.
Using pay-per-click means that advertisers pay the website owner whenever an ad is clicked on by visitors. Advertisers can bid on how much they are willing to spend on certain ads either in your blog, on your website, or both. As a result, you can pull in more revenue through the shared revenue of the ads.
Optimization should be top priority for your website redesign. If you feel neither you nor anybody you know can design your website to be at its best for drawing in prospective customers, a redesign team who knows what to do can be both affordable and cater to your company's needs.
Thinking or planning to redesign your website and make it more user friendly? Building up a website that attracts every visitor while establishing your brand name is nothing to take lightly.
When a website is published it could mean the difference between the blossoming or death of your business.
Here are some suggestions on what to do and what to avoid when putting a website redesign into action:
What You Should Do
What You Should Avoid
An effective website redesign plan can come together well if you use your resources, and there is only an increasing number of them available at your disposal. By forming a website that lets people know unobtrusively that your business is dependable and standing strong is a huge factor in efficient marketing. Putting your site in the hands of a design team who knows what to do is an investment worth making.
A website redesign project should include ways to not only make it more appealing, but foremost, how to attract more qualified visitors which may turn into leads and eventually into clients. In my humble opinion, people will spend too much time on the "pretty" side of thing and miss the point. Redesigning your website should include most, if not all these great "lead generation" tips, and generate more paying customers out of your website.
First, you need to understand the mechanics of generating leads on your website. This is the infrastucture that an Inbound Marketing Agency would build a campaign on:
Now that you have the structure of a proper internet marketing campaign, let's look at the lead generation tips:
Generating leads should be the main focus of your website redesign project. Remember than your internet marketing strategy will never be whole & complete, it will be a work in progress for the rest of the years to come.
Redesigning your website is not like creating a brochure, a website should always continue to expand & grow. If you don't, your competition will eventually do it and take business away from you. Use those few tips and see the leads starting to pour in.
It’s about time! You have finally decided to get your website redesign project started. Where should you start? In a word, SEO. Ok, so that’s not a word but its still where you should start. Search Engine Optimization will make or break your success.
A website that is optimized sends a very clear and confident message to the all powerful search engine gods: “I know who I am and I know who wants me.”
Here are 7 keys to getting your website redesign started off on the right foot:
As a business owner, the need for you to have a user-friendly website that has a good design is detrimental. A good website is bound to improve your business performance as it goes far to attract paying customers. You need to use professional designers to redesign your website to your specification and to suit your business.
What is the need for redesigning a website? The following are some of the most important as to why you should consider redesigning your website.
Website redesign is therefore beneficial to your small business as it improves your website. This in turn improves your business and site performance leading to achievement of productivity and profits.
As a digital marketer, I'm always on the look out for what's new. However, predicting the 2013 new marketing trends is nothing short of guessing. Things move so quickly and new technologies makes planning for the future difficult to say the least.
But there are some marketing trends we can clearly see that you should be aware of. So before you plan your website redesign, make sure to take in consideration those few predictable trends:
The other prediction I have is that the end of times will not occur on December 21, 2012 as the Mayans suggested. So start to plan for the redesign of your website right now before your competition read this blog and gets a head start.
After you have collected all the answers, the redesigning of your website will be much more focused on what's important to your members.
I would also recommend that you have a brainstorm with the key players in the Website Redesign Team and produce answers to the following questions:
1-What are the top 3 types of visitors coming to the website
If you know who they are, it will help you design the website around them. Be as specific as you can: i.e. male/female, age, geographic location, job title, etc
2-What are the top 3 things those vistors do when they are on the website
Data doesn't lie. You should now have some form of traffic analysis (Google Analytics) to tell you what your visitors do when they are on your website. Look at the last 18 months and sort by "Top Pages Visited" and there you have it. Do not count your Home Landing Page as #1, of course it should get the most visits, it's how they enter the site most of the time, look at the top 3 interior pages. Also look at the Top 3 Exit Pages, which will show you what page they were on when they decided to leave.
3-What are the top 3 things we need them to do on the website
This is really key because if you really compare what you'd really like them to do with what they are actually doing, there's usually a gap. Now you can't force visitors to do what they don't want to, but you certainly can invite them to see more of what's important to the organization with great calls-to-actions.
Redesigning your website can be a lot more work than you had anticipated, but if you plan and strategize the process, you'll knock it out of the park on your first try.
It sounds like the start of a series of jokes, but you may need a website redesign if....you notice these eight key signs.
Every website undergoes a few minor changes at some point. For instance, you probably update your site with new photos, graphics or content. However, sometimes a website can show its age just from its out-of-date design. Here are some of the signs you need a website redesign:
1. You have a Flash-based Website
Yes, flash was in and now it’s out. Flash is great for making the site interactive. However, it does have some disadvantages. For instance, it’s not SEO friendly. Most search engines fail to index the content on these sites. If you have a flash-based site, you’re probably not receiving many visitors. Search engines give your website a low or poor ranking in the Search Engine Result Pages, or SERPs. This means that your competitors are the first page and you’re most likely on page five or 10. Internet users typically stop at the third page.
Another problem is the loading speed. Flash takes a long time to load. This causes your visitors, that are probably already impatient, to become even more impatient and click off your website.
2. You have a Template Website
The Internet is great because it gives you free stuff like website templates. The bad thing about the Internet is it gives you free stuff like website templates. These templates often look pre-packaged and simple. They don’t impress visitors who are potential customers. They look like sites new companies use when they want a quick, easy website and asked the neighbor’s kid down the street. A lot has happened since the late 90s when free website templates were the “hip” thing to use. Impress your visitors ditch the template. A cheap website template may also have the side effect of making you look....well, cheap.
3. Your Website’s not Friendly with SEO
You have no choice when it comes to the business of being SEO-friendly. Search engines use all kinds of algorithms to figure out the websites that best match the user’s preferences. If your website doesn’t include some keywords that users are looking for, you’ll see your website at the end of the SERP.
4. It's not Mobile Ready
Another thing to consider with a website redesign is if your website is optimized for mobile browsers. People are using their mobile devices like phones to search the Internet. According to Hubspot, over 30% of all Google searches are done via a smartphone. If your website doesn’t support mobile browsers, you’re missing out on a lot of customers. Check out your website on a mobile phone now and see: is it easy to read & navigate?
5.You have lots of Visitors, but Nothing to Show
If you’re seeing visitor numbers are up, but it’s not translating to sales then you have a website design problem. Whether you want people to buy your product or service directly via your website or not, you want to generate sales. If people are clicking on your site, but not signing up for newsletters or buying products you have a problem.
6. You have a Terrible Homepage
You want your visitors to enjoy their time searching your website, not feel like they are on a treasure hunt. Your website’s homepage should have all the needed information such as About Us and contact information. When customers needed information, they shouldn’t have to search for it.
7. Your Content is Out-of-Date
Your customers want a reason to return to your website. If you have out-of-date content or fresh content in an obscure place then your site definite needs a website redesign.
Jokes aside. If any of the key signs fit your site, it’s time for a website redesign. Better website, more visitors and higher SEO ranking. It’s that simple.