As your representative in the cyber sphere, your website is your store front. In this way it must showcase not only your products or services, but your approach and mission too. This all comes down to branding, which should be consistent. Your business identity is established with the appearance and performance of your website. It’s not about sticking a logo on every page, though. It’s about demonstrating your brand identity through the information that you provide.
Never think of your website as ‘finished’. It should be continually developed and refined. By regularly adding relevant content in the form of blogs and news, and linking to and from your site, your website becomes active. This attracts visitors and improves search page rankings. Ensure the content is relevant by including the most popular key search phrases for your business. This may be based on products, geography or customer need. Don’t forget, too, that Google’s criteria is subject to change. In recent moves, for example, user experience has been prioritised. So site owners should be ensuring their page is optimised for loading speed and stability. In this way, the back end of your website should be as open to change as the content that you present.
It’s vital now to be mobile friendly. Over 50% of internet traffic worldwide is now via mobile devices. Plus, this percentage is likely to be even higher going forward, especially in the run up to Christmas. Having a site that is fast and clear for mobile users will almost certainly increase sales and raise your profile. This is especially so for product based businesses. Your mobile site should follow the same principles as your desktop site, and carry through your brand identity. However, the most important thing from a user perspective is mobile functionality.
Encourage visitors and customers to interact with your brand. This means including clear and well positioned call to action buttons. Keep variety in your calls to action, so include options to ‘call us’, ‘email us’, ‘learn more’ and ‘buy now’. Encourage feedback from your customers with a forum for sharing reviews, commenting on content and interacting with social media. This all increases the engagement of your customers and fosters a sense of brand loyalty.
A perfectly formed website is one thing, but how do you increase and maintain the levels of traffic arriving there? Growth requires sales, and sales require leads. Your website traffic makes this happen.
The most straightforward and immediate way to increase traffic is through paid search, social media and display advertising. These are all great ways of attracting visitors, getting your site out there and building your brand. Paid ads should work in tandem with organic growth, so be clear about your strategy so you get the most value for the money you spend.
One of the best organic ways to increase traffic to your website is through social media channels. This can promote products, services or content. However, you have to be proactive and consistent to make a difference. Use Twitter for short, snappy enticing links, Facebook to encourage content sharing, while Instagram and Pinterest are great for product focused businesses. LinkedIn has become much more than a CV library. As a professional social network, it is now a valuable platform for service based content.
Remember that your customer base visits your site or social channels in different circumstances. To reflect this, vary the length and format of your content. This makes it appealing to different kinds of readers. Both long form articles and shorter news based content both have a place, and headlines are a crucial part of both.
Increasingly, video is working to drive traffic to websites. It’s a great way to engage an audience who don’t have the inclination to read text. We’re back at short attention spans again! From going live on your social channels to embedded product focused videos, this is becoming an important medium for e-commerce.
Use your social channels to promote incentives for visiting your website. Known as a lead magnet, this is something of value offered for free by visiting your site. For inspiration, think about free downloads, samples or e-book excerpts.
Understanding is one thing, but doing is another. It may feel like there are a terrifying number of boxes to check in order to grow your business via your website. To work out the best approach for your circumstances, we are happy to help!