“if you aspire to reach others, keep things fresh”
Imagine you walk into a grocery store and looking around you notice that all of the products are outdated. The produce is passed it’s prime. The milk is expired.
Then you look across the street and notice a competitor who has a window full of fresh fruits and veggies. He’s gone to great lengths to make sure his products are fresh and appealing. Where do you think you’ll be shopping in the future?
In line with that analogy, keeping your site updated is all too often the forgotten sun of good online business practices.
From a search optimization perspective, ignoring your site for extended periods can spell death as Search Engines and users need a reason to come to your site – and they prefer high quality, relevant “fresh food”.
Unattended websites left “adrift” for months (or years) at a time with no updates or new content generally yield very poor performance. As such, keeping your website content updated is a vital aspect as it can contribute to the ongoing success of your business.
It’s a misconception to think a website is a one time set-it and forget-it thing.
In fact a website is never truly done. Ultimately it’s the maintaining and updating of the site that will be key.
E-commerce sites obviously know the value of fresh content. They are always adding new products with descriptions. But all too often services-based sites seem to overlook this crucial element.
A website is never a finished product; it needs consistent maintenance if you want to remain competitive and credible to your customers.
It’s Like an Oil Change for Your Website
You have you car oil changed about every 3000 miles or roughly 4x per year. This helps to keep your car running smoothly.
Now imagine if you never changed the oil or did any maintenance on your car at all? It would likely have a negative impact on the vehicle’s overall performance – which could be costly.
Well think of your site in a similar way – with quarterly website maintenance at a minimum. It’s like giving your website a little pick-me-up. It’s also important to have Google Analytics installed so that you can monitor your site and pay attention to how it is performing overall. It’s like “looking under the hood” of your website to make sure every thing is ok.
Blogs for Adding Fresh Content and to Your Site
A blog can be a vital addition to your site which allows for a steady stream of fresh, relevant content. Furthermore, a blog on your small business website is a great way to showcase your expertise in your industry. Meaningful posts and topics can speak volumes about you and your business – keeping folks coming back for more.
Your blog can act as a Content Marketing channel. However, a blog is only as good as the consistency and quality of which you post. Remember, you should be adding value with your content. So a blog post every 6 months is not likely to do much good. And if a blog is the only means you are using to market or promote your site, then frequency matters!
DON’T just post updates to your Facebook page!
Time and time again I speak with business owners who say they never update their website. Instead they just put any updates or new info on their FB page.
While this may be easy or convenient for them, there are a host of reasons why this is a bad practice. Simply put, NOT EVERYONE IS ON FACEBOOK! Nor do they want to be forced over to your FB page to wade through the chatter in search of info.
Facebook is a marketing channel and opportunity for engagement. However, FB is NOT for everyone. And people have good reasons for wanting nothing to do with it – (myself included!). So if you only update your FB page, then you are literally alienating an entire segment of prospects or customers. And from an SEO perspective, ignoring your website over your Facebook page is even worse.
Be sure to update your actual website with upcoming events, new products or services etc.
Website Maintenance for Optimal Performance
“done correctly a website should evolve over time and not remain the same indefinitely”
If your website is running on a platform such as WordPress, consistent maintenance can ensure your site or blog is working properly and you’re staying current with the latest version of WordPress. These often contain security updates to safeguard your site. Database back-ups are performed on a regular basis to prevent any content loss (YES, this can happen).
In general, keeping your site updated helps build credibility and trust for your business. It shares information with your existing and potentially new customers and can answer questions or offer solutions. This overall can be a positive reflection of the business itself – which in turn can drive more traffic, sales and conversions from your site.
Otherwise you could be missing out on top rankings that may be rightfully yours to own. And if your website has the same old stuff while your competitors are giving folks content which is new and fresh, your are likely missing out on sales or leads!
Consider a Website Maintenance Retainer…
No time or know-how to maintain or update your website yourself?
Consider a Website Maintenance Retainer – which may be just the solution.
The Internet is constantly in flux and your website is a “living project”. In our “content-driven” world – current, useful content which answers questions or brings value remains supreme!
Written by Barbara Rogers of Future Primitive Graphics. Helping businesses grow through better design and search visibility solutions. Creatively collaborating with those who genuinely want to make the world a better place with their products or services.