When a new marketing director, development director, or communications manager takes the helm at an organization, they take stock of their digital assets and it’s easy to conclude that it’s time for a new website. But what if the website is only a couple years old, or has a significant search engine footprint? You risk blowing up your entire web presence if not managed well. Here are some tips to optimize your web presence without totally blowing it up.
Where is your first touch with new customers?
It’s easy to think your website is the digital front door to your business, but maybe your first contact with customers is no longer through a web search, but a social media account, advertising, or email marketing. How have you ensured that your first impression is in line with your branding and marketing strategy. Those elements are much more likely to drift over time than the home page of your website. Be sure to spend appropriate time aligning your marketing channels with effective messaging and visuals before blowing up your home page.
Review your search engine presence.
It’s surprising what you can learn from a quick review of your website analytics and webmaster tools about how your site is being discovered and engaged with. From which pages are indexed to which are the most common point of entry, reviewing how your site is currently performing in search engines can help you discover content creation opportunities, and maybe even places where your strategy has wasted effort in the past. And existing website can be adjusted and expanded so much more affordably than a brand new site.
Enhance your website’s user experience.
How does a new customer move through your existing website? Is it clear and compelling? Does that come down to design or maybe you’r not offering a clear path of engagement on your current website. Adding clear calls to action, paths for user engagement based on their needs, and more compelling value statements can all be accomplished without throwing the baby out with the bathwater. Be sure to engage an outside perspective in this work and respond to your weak points accordingly.
Integrate your lead generation practices.
How do new customers engage with you? Do they call, fill out a form, email and info@ address? What happens to all of those inquiries? Too often website owners complain about their website not performing well, but their internal systems are disconnected from their actual sale pipeline. Should website inquiries go to the front desk or to sales? Is there a clear path to support from your website that doesn’t get stuck in a bottleneck? Integrating your CRM or Support Desk and tracking these results is all possible with most websites without having to rebuild.
Invest in high value media.
How engaging is your messaging? Do you have one set of messaging for your sales pitch and another on the website? Do you have engaging videos, visuals, and brand-aligned value messages on your website? Have you spent $20k on your trade show display and only $50 for stock photos? Make sure your investments in the media that appear on your website are commensurate to the cost of the original investment in the medium.
All of these ideas are just a starting point for optimizing your overall web presence, but can help save your organization from the disruption of a major re-build project when it may not be needed. Dig in, ask hard questions, and allow your teams to iterate on your web presence together to achieve greater results.