Would you hire someone, assign them a desk, hand them your company brochures & flyers, tell them to sell, leave them be, and pay them? We think you probably wouldn't. This is why the first of the month is an important time for any website and your online marketing. Your website or as we call it your online employee is your cheapest employee that can help drive revenue, customer adoption, increase engagement, and more. In this article we will go over what we see as the first of the month checks every business online should do.
Websites should have a clear call-to-action to get people to do something on their website. This could be contacting your business through an online form, calling your place of business, or getting someone to click on a specific link. Is your website call to action prominently displayed and visible? Should it be moved? Do you know it should be moved? Have you tried A/B testing to see which pieces of your website are working for you? Recently we removed all of our fancy animations and slideshows on our pages and increased our customer contact by over 20%. We made these choices based on A/B testing over a period of several months.
Your forms are a great asset to get customers and prospects to contact your business. Have you received any contacts recently? Now is a great time to check and verify that the form goes to the right individual(s). If you have more than one form, make certain they all work. If you are receiving emails from your site but they are only coming from one of the forms maybe the other is not working correctly. If you are not getting as many contacts that you expect is it because you are forcing people to comply with your business practices rather than working to theirs? Often we see businesses trying to force their customers into their model rather than letting each customer be unique.
Having a mobile friendly website is more important today than it was a few years ago. Over half of all searches are coming from mobile devices as of August 2015 on average according to Google. If your website is not mobile friendly the odds of Google, Bing, and Yahoo presenting your site on the search engine result pages (SERP) for mobile. Your website will receive more engagement if it is mobile friendly for your customers.
Have you looked at how your website is performing? How many new vs returning visitors you are receiving? How many referrals from other sites are you receiving, how many are desktop, tablet, and mobile devices? With analytics you can determine on ways to improve your site by seeing where your users are coming from. If you are rocking your search engine optimization (SEO) with Google AdWords, you can see how your marketing campaigns are performing in your targeted regions. With some in-depth analysis you can determine your audience by age, gender, and more. A key area we look at for many of our clients are heat maps. With a heat map we can not only determine how far down a page someone is looking, where they are clicking, but also where there eyes are moving to further streamline and improve their website.
Every year you have to renew your domain name (unless you purchase multiple years). Do you have auto-renew enabled? Is the credit card information accurate? Are your DNS entries accurate? Is the contact information correct and still valid so that you don't risk losing your domain? These are some technical questions but one’s we check for every one of our clients every month so that their domain never goes to auction and their business website runs smoothly. Did we mention this is a service every customer receives for no cost? We do it as it allows us to make certain we are taking care of their needs.
A website is only part of your online marketing plan. Social media should be part of your entire marketing strategy. Are you posting enough, getting engagement with your intended audience, following the analytics on your social media? If you haven’t posted on a social media channel for months, even years, why do you still have it? If you are busy running your business a great option is to use one of our maintenance plans where you can get unlimited website updates, social media posts, posts across our family of social media sites, and much more.
Is your business email working as well as it should? Are you receiving and sending with no problems? Have you checked your spam folder? Most good spam filters will get 99% of the spam but there is always that 1% that shouldn’t be classified as spam that goes into spam. Your junk email folder is a great item to clean out at the top of the month.
Do your advertisements, flyers, brochures, and other marketing materials promote your website? Are the email addresses shown still active and being monitored? Are all of your marketing efforts branded the same for overall consistency so that it is more familiar with your customers? If not, these could be lost sales that you don’t realize you are missing.
Your website is your cheapest employee by far but your other employees are equally important. Are they actively promoting your business? Are they sharing content you post on their social media? Are they being true advocates of your company to help you grow? Make certain they are aware of everything your online employee is doing and how they can help you increase your business exposure.
There are more items than above JM2 Webdesigners from Valparaiso (Valpo) Indiana does for our customers. If you are on a maintenance plan, we do three times the above list. If you are not on a low-cost maintenance plan these are core items we encourage everyone to do to keep everything fresh and moving positively forward. If you want to learn about how a maintenance plan can assist your business you can reach us at 855-456-2669, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or through our online contact form here (and we just checked that it worked a few minutes ago as part of our own monthly checks).
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