11.7 points to make your website rock!
Post on 15-May-2015
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DESCRIPTIONIf you're wondering why your website isn't getting the traffic you want - BEFORE you decide to rebuild it, check this document out!
- 1.A publication byMarketing Toolkit #1Website checklist Introduction
2. A website should enhance your business, not hinderit, but all too often, a website doesnt get the resultsyou expect, can look a bit tired, and doesnt reallyconvert the visitors you do get into potentialcustomers.Before we look at re-designing a website, we needto take a look at the good, bad AND ugly of ourcurrent website. Before we jump in and ditch thewhole thing, we need to make sure that we dontthrow the baby out with the bath water. Forexample, you could have built up some serious SEOranking with your current website, which could belost if we start again from scratch.This article is intended to walk you through theprocess and current thinking around website design,and what elements an effective website shouldpossess.So, lets get down to the nitty gritty.. Were goingto cover the following topics:1. Whats going on with your current website2. What you want to achieve with a new build3. Analysis of where youre getting traffic4. What assets does your website currently have5. What are your competitors doing6. Whats your unique proposition7. Your target market8. Search Engine Optimisation9. Get em to do SOMETHING when they visit you! 3. 10. Ongoing content11. Social media12. Whos in control - you or your web designer?__________________________________________The purpose of a website these days is to supportyour other marketing efforts. It can no longer sitalone in terms of a lead generating machine. Thelook, feel and purpose of a website affects yourbrand awareness, sales strategy AND how yourethought of out there both in cyber land and in reallife!Before we rush in and set to with creating a newwebsite - for many reasons, we may want toredesign our site, we need to start at the basics andtake a really good look at our current website.1. Whats going on with your current website?We need to get our analysis hat on and take a lookat the current sites performance against determinedparametres:(i) The number of visitors youre getting: number ofvisits/visitors/unique visitors(ii) How many are staying on your site and for howlong. Check out the % bounce rate(iii) The current rankings for your keywords(iv) How authoritative is your domain name? Doesyour domain name contain important keywords thatdescribe your business?(v) Does your website make it easy for people to 4. part with their email address/information? Does itcontain a sign-up form?(vi) How many conversions does your site get?If you dont know the answers to these questions,then youre seriously undermining the ability of yourwebsite to do what you want it to do.You need to add Google Analytics to your site to beable to access this information. Its free, but willneed some techy ability to add it to your site.Once youve determined where you are currently,you can then start thinking about what you wantyour site to do for your business.2. What do you want to achieve with a new websitebuild?Just because a website looks fantastic, theres nogaurantee that it will achieve its objectives. Thehard work really goes on before the website isdesigned. Consider the following:1. Measurable objectives ie, to gain 25% increase in email address capture1. Check that the keywords youre using actually attract traffic ie, people are searching for those keywords. A great tool is Google External Keywords to analyse your keyword search volume.Be very clear about what you want your website todo, ie, do you want to collect email addresses so thatyou can email market to these leads? Do you want 5. to sell product online? Do you want your visitors tocontact you? Do you want your visitors to shareyour website?Until you know exactly what you want your site todo, you cant move onto the next step.3. Do you know where your traffic is coming from?Dead important to know this - the differencebetween browsers and buyers! Which marketingpillar is driving your traffic? Do you get a lot oftraffic from Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter? Are yougetting organic traffic from Google when people aresearching for your type of product? Are you gettingtraffic from PPC (Google Adwords) or Facebook Ads?How much are you paying for advertising online vhow many conversions you get from it?4. What assets does your current website have?Again, dont throw the baby out with the bath water- you may have many assets to your current websitethat you wont want to lose. Have a think about:1. Your most popular pages1. Your best performing keywords1. Your number of inbound links to your siteAll of these points have SEO asset which you wontwant to lose.5. Check out the competitionWhat are your competitors doing well? What are 6. they doing badly? What could you improve on?You can run both your website and your competitorswebsites through http://marketing.grader.com andW3C Validator to see how youre performing againstyour competitors.After this analysis, you can then put together anaction plan to ensure that you build the right websiteto achieve your objectives.6. Whats your unique proposition?The content that you write for your website shouldclearly convey your UNIQUE PROPOSITION. In otherwords, whats in it for your visitors? Why shouldthey invest time in having a look at your website.What are they going to GAIN from it?Remember that, when writing content, you simplyMUST write for your visitor, not Googles robots. Ifyouve chosen your keywords properly, it shouldntbe difficult to write these keywords into yourcontent, but still keep it humanised.Since June 2011, Google have changed the way theyrank websites. 50% of their rankings are frommetadata, but interestingly, 50% of their searchrankings are from activity on other sites, ie socialmedia, blogs etc.7. Your Target MarketThe best way to identify your target market is to 7. visualise the sort of person that will buy from you.The more specific you can be, the better. Forexample, if you consider their:GenderAgeMarital StatusWhere they liveWhat they do for a livingDo they have a familyWhat they do in their spare timeWhat websites they useWhat their interests areTheir incomeWhat motivates or concerns themThe more specific you can get to with this exercise,the more youll find writing the content for your siteeasier, because you have a ficticious target customer.You may have a few different target customers, soits worth time spent on identifying these.8. Search Engine OptimisationAs mentioned before, you dont want to be trashingpages that already have good SEO rankings and/ortraffic. If you plan to move some of these pages,then 301 redirects are really important so that youdont lose this value.Pick out a couple of important keywords per page.Optimise these keywords in your header tags andbuild internal links to these pages. 8. 9. Get em doing SOMETHING when they come toyour site!How frustrating it is to see your traffic increasing,but at the same time, your bounce rate increases.Ouch!! Website experiences are a bit like a journey.Your visitor is investing time by having a route roundyour site but its important that you tell them whatyou want them to do.Specific calls to action should be evident on everysingle page of your website:Call us now for your free quoteDownload the best way toBuy this now.Your calls to action should benefit your visitor, forexampleSubscribe to our newsletter is a load of tosh really,but something likeLose 10lbs in 10 days with Ashtunga Yoga. Startyour weight loss programme here NOW!Click here to find out how.This is much more engaging because theres abenefit to your customer.Other calls to action could include: 9. EbooksPromotionsContestsFree TrialsContact usNewsletter subscriptions10. Building ContentThe more content we load onto a website, the betterit ranks with Google. For example, a 10 page staticwebsite will receive much fewer visitors than a 10page website that is constantly being added to withfresh content.Start a blog - it is well known that companies thatregularly update their blog will get around 55% morewebsite visitors and 88% more leads than those whodont. (Source taken from Hubspot.com)11. Social MediaEngagement on social media platforms will addmassive credibility to your marketing proposition. Infact, Google implemented Caffeine in June 2011 inwhich they rank interaction and engagement bycompanies just as highly as they do traditional SEO.The main learn from this is by creating a buzz onlineabout your business, Google will pick up on it andthink youre great!80% of what you do on social media sites should be 10. about YOU. Remember social means social - youwouldnt go to a party and suddenly engage inselling your products. Its the same with socialmedia. Only 20% of what you put out there shouldbe about up selling your products. You have to kindof earn the right to talk about your products, notram them down peoples throats!If you need more information about building socialmedia strategies, then drop me a line email@example.com - Id be happy totalk it through with you.12. Whos in Control? You or your web designer?Lastly, but certainly not leastly, I hear this all thetime - my web designer makes all the changes to mysite. These days, its just NOT GOOD ENOUGH tohave no control over the content on your website,your site stats or your ability to engage with yourvisitors.If you havent got a Content Management Systemattached to your website, then youre really missinga trick. Any website designer worth their salt willintegrate a CMS system into a website build in orderfor you to manage it yourself. If your designercharges you for it, then find another one! Hesripping you off!Being in control of the marketing of your business isparamount to success. A website is no exception.Once youve paid for the website build, there will bea small hosting fee to pay to host the site, but apart 11. from that your website should be totally under yourown control.There are many other nitty gritty things to considerwhen redesigning a website, but here are theimportant fact