Your website is the center of your online universe. So, you owe it to your small business to make sure your web content is in good working order.
So take a moment to conduct a brief web content audit by answering these 6 questions.
Do People Instantly Get What You Do?
Small business owners are often so involved in day-to-day operations they often forget their customers need some help understanding what they have to offer. The key here is to not look at your products and services from your point of view.
Recently a small business owner handed me a flyer for a health and fitness product. By looking at the flyer I could see a person jumping up for joy. Also, the product’s name was more important than anything else on the page.
But I couldn’t tell what the product could do unless I spoke to the person who handed me the flyer. The flyer’s owner said she connects better with her audience through public speaking.
Maybe your experience is similar—you connect better with prospects through conversation and presentations. Can you remember what you say that spark customer interest? If you only had 3 minutes to explain yourself, what would you say? How about in a 30-second elevator pitch?
In person you have more time to talk, while on your website you have only 3 seconds to tell your story.
Does Your Web Content Seem Messy?
A client handed me a pile of papers and folders, saying he thought he was creative. His web designer was angry because she had waited for more than a year for written content. But he didn’t know how to finish organizing and writing all his ideas.
Often websites can be as disorganized and confusing as my client’s papers. Many people leave a site because their user experience (UX) is poor. But you don’t have to be a UX expert to care about your customers.
First, make sure your navigation menus are easy to read and understand. Menus should also help visitors quickly find what they want.
Second, make sure your web content is clear and easy to understand.
Third, you should have quality images and graphics that create visual interest and aid in understanding.
Fourth, you don’t have to write perfectly; but grammar, punctuation, and spelling do count. Remember the 3-second rule? If your visitors have to slow down to think, you’ve lost them.
Does Your Website Offer Free, Informative Content?
The great thing about websites is that they engage people. So make sure you have plenty of useful, free information that invites visitors to stay a while.
Blog articles are a great way to offer free, informative content. But you don’t have to have a blog to do that. You can publish articles and other content on static pages, too.
On her home page, marketing guru Marcia Yudkin says she doesn’t have a blog. She does hundreds of articles, links to valuable resources, and landing pages with valuable content. She also constantly updates and repurposes her content so it always seems fresh and generates new interest.
Is Your Web Content Up to Date?
When was the last time you looked at the your website’s footer? That’s where you’ll find your copyright notice. It should display the current year.
While you’re looking at dates, when was the last time you published a blog post or added new content to your existing pages? Take a moment to create a spreadsheet of all the pages, posts, and images on your site to help you stay current. Note where there are links. Also, always check to see if the links work and they connect to valid URLs.
Also, make sure you have the most current versions of WordPress, themes, and plugins so your website remains secure.
Is Your Website Mobile Friendly?
Why is this important? 184 million people in the U.S. own smartphones, and Facebook, YouTube, Google Play, and Google Search are their favorite apps.
The easiest way to make your website mobile friendly is to design it with a responsive theme. That way it looks good on any screen. For example, this website uses a StudioPress theme powered by the Genesis framework; so the Write for Small Business website is both mobile responsive and search engine friendly.
Now is always a good time to improve your web content.
After you conduct a web content audit, come up with a weekly action plan to upgrade each page, post, and image.
You don’t have to do it all at once. Just think what are the 2 or 3 things you can do this week to improve your online universe.