Give Your Web Presence a Boost in 2015

By Doug Hucker
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What resolutions did you make for your business in 2015? If retooling your website is one of them, check out these helpful tips for giving your digital presence a big boost this year.

1. Work on your flexibility

If you haven’t already, it’s time to make your site responsive. Not familiar with responsive web sites? Don’t worry, we’ll break it down for you.

Responsive web sites make for a good browsing experience on mobile devices. In the past, firms would design “mobile-only” web sites; web sites sized only for phones. These sites were a less effective, clumsy solution. They often sacrificed important content and usability for the sake of having something accessible by phone. Responsive web sites are complete content experiences; seamless from desktop to tablet to mobile. Responsive sites flex and adapt to accommodate their layouts. They fit any device and screen resolution, providing the same content and experience a user might have when visiting your site on a desktop platform. This creates opportunities for significant increases in mobile traffic, conversions and search rankings. If this isn’t reason enough to implement a responsive web site, consider this: last year, 60% of online traffic was from mobile devices!

2. Brush off the cobwebs

When is the last time you updated your web site? We’re not just talking about general content updates via your CMS. We’re talking about evolutions that your staff probably cannot make: evolutions in search engine optimization (SEO), site structure and code — all things that need to be revisited on a regular basis (e.g. monthly, quarterly) in order to stay current. These efforts will keep your web site fresh and relevant in order to successfully support SEO, business development and communications. Task your web design partner with handling this work — the most successful web marketing programs involve ongoing, outsourced assistance. Companies rarely get this level of work completed with success internally. Aside from the technical barriers, internal resources are often too scarce.

3. Move up the ladder

Speaking of search rankings, if you haven’t spent any time or effort on an SEO strategy for your web site, now is a good time to get started. A content management system like WordPress can make some significant SEO improvements possible in a snap, but there’s no silver bullet in web marketing and you still have to have a good content strategy in place. If that’s out of your comfort zone, try doing some light reading or get in touch with your web development firm.

4. Let people know you’re smart

Any good SEO strategy will center around fresh, quality content. One of the easiest ways to keep your content relevant is by writing thought leadership articles (that’s agency speak for “blogging about the stuff you know”). Besides SEO benefits, thought leadership content generation can help position your brand as an authority in your industry. Your site may even become a resource for your customers and peers, which means consistent returning traffic.

5. Brag!

If you’re getting a lot of press coverage, and it’s getting buried under blog posts, maybe it’s time to invest in an online newsroom. The newsroom is an area dedicated to press coverage and company news, separate from blog articles. Through an online newsroom you can feature all of your coverage, spotlight particular articles and even post resources for members of the press. Journalists like to write about companies who have already garnered press coverage because those companies have already been vetted by other media outlets as good and credible sources. The online newsroom serves to help solidify your reputation in your industry by showcasing all of the great work you’ve been doing. Here’s a great example.

Next steps

Layout a website strategy and start with a plan that’s reasonable to tackle — remember, you don’t have to do everything all at once. A web site is truly never finished. It’s a constantly evolving and living marketing tool. But it’s important to start now if you want to see results!

What’s the focus of your web site strategy in 2015?

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