10 Reasons Why You Need A New Website

  10 Reasons Why You Need A New Website

Your company’s website often creates a first impression on a potential customer who is just beginning to get to know your brand. The look, feel and functionality of your website is crucial in how you represent your brand and how people interact with your business. If you are wondering whether you need to redesign your website or create a new one here are some reasons why you might need a change.

1. Your Site Looks Out of Date or Stale
If your company designed and put up your website a decade ago, then chances are your customers will notice it is outdated. The appearance of websites always changes over time and if you haven’t updated any time recently then it is probably time to make some adjustments. Modern websites are clean and simple with text that is easy to read so try to incorporate these elements as you update.

2. Your Competitor’s Sites are Better
It is a good idea to review what the competitors in your industry are doing online to evaluate your own site in comparison. If their websites seem more up to date, with better content and design then you probably need to step up your game. When a competitor’s website looks more professional and modern, your potential customers might be more inclined to choose them.

3. Your Site is Hard to Navigate
Customers should be able to look at your site and be able to have all their questions answered relatively quickly. Visitors need to be able to find what they need in only a few clicks otherwise they will give up and move on. Users today have higher standards of ease and functionality than they had in the past so make sure that your site complies with the current expectations.

4. Your Loading Time is Too Slow
In the same way that people have higher standards for appearance and navigation, they also expect a site to load quickly without any issues. People have little patience for a slow site and if your website has too many images or other types of content and won’t immediately load then customers will click away from you.

A slow site also means a lower search ranking on Google since load times are taken into account so improving the speed of your site will help your company in more ways than one.

5. Your Site Isn’t Mobile Friendly
More than half of all search are now done on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets rather than desktop computers. If your site isn’t optimized for mobile use it could appear tiny and unreadable on a smartphone which means customers will avoid it.

A website that isn’t mobile friendly is missing out on a lot of traffic and potential sales. You should think about optimizing for smartphones if you are considering a redesign.

6. You Aren’t Selling Products Directly from Your Site
It is relatively easy now to set up an online store so that customers can buy your products on your site instead of having to click somewhere else or go into your physical location. Even if you are using Amazon or another site to sell you should also include an option to buy on your website so that customers don’t have to waste time and can immediately make a purchase. Your redesign should include setting up a shopping cart if you don’t already have one

7. Your Analytics Show Poor Results
If you have run some website analytics and are getting low numbers for average time on the page or average number of page views per visit then it might have to do with your site design. A high bounce rate could also indicate issues with your site that is causing people to leave too quickly.
Another thing to consider is your search rank if it seems relatively low. Google takes the efficiency of your website into account for ranking so any issues could affect your visibility online.

8. Your Content is Old or Poorly Made
It is crucial now to have fresh, compelling content that is updated as often as possible. If you have had the same content on your website for a while and it doesn’t reflect people’s current interests then you might need to update it. Adding a blog and posting new content every so often can ensure that your website remains interesting and is worth checking out periodically for new information.

9. Your Site Doesn’t Incorporate Social Media
It is no longer possible in the current business climate to ignore the importance of social media in all aspects of promoting your brand. Integrating social media on your site as much as possible will help boost followers and engagement across the board. You need a link somewhere on your site for each of your social media profiles so people can find them quickly and easily.

10. Your Site No Longer Represents Your Brand
When it comes to deciding whether or not to redesign your site it can be as simple as thinking about the evolution of your brand. If your current site does not reflect how you have grown and changed as a company then it is time to update. The bottom line is that your website should be something that you are proud of and anything less needs to be changed for the better.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

How to Get More Mileage Out of Your Social Media Posts and Website Assets

content-social-mileage With social media marketing, it’s usually a “one and done” type of deal. A post is posted, shared, or Tweeted, never to be repeated again. At least, that used to be the idea of how things were to be done. Nowadays, there are ways to extend the life of your website assets and even share them multiple times on social media. Here are a few ways you can get more mileage from your website assets through social media marketing:

Take Advantage of Trends Like #TBT and #FBF

Throwback Thursdays and Flashback Fridays are very popular social media trends and the good thing is that you can participate every week! Whether it’s re-sharing an old post, or re-posting a nostalgic Instagram post, these are all acceptable ways of keeping your old content and social media posts alive. As we near the end of 2015, sites like Facebook are keen to remind us of past events. Don’t be afraid to incorporate these trends into your social media campaigns.

Keep Adding to Evergreen Pages and Let People Know About It

The purpose of evergreen content is that they stand the test of time. This wouldn’t be possible if you weren’t constantly adding new content, information, and features. Even though the content exists on the same web page and URL, feel free to re-share it on social media once you get a new features such as: video, Q&A, infographics, reviews, and more.

Create a Multi-Part Series and Post the Old Ones to Refresh Peoples’ Memory

Do you have a particular popular blog post that you’re proud of? Feel free to follow-up on that subject to make a part 2,3 or A,B. This also creates linking opportunities for SEO.

If you have an engaging Facebook post with a lot of engagement, you can easily take a screenshot of that and re-ask or ask additional questions. Even if you want to just focus on one particular comment, you can take a screenshot or create a new image from that UGC (user-generated content) to give that topic new life.

Tie Your Existing Content to Current News and Trends

There are many ways that your products/services can relate to current events. For example, if a skateboard manufacturer can tie their posts into recent news of hoverboards catching on fire… specifically to show people that their skateboards don’t spontaneously combust. Be creative!

Repurposing content and social media posts/ideas doesn’t have to be repetitive or trite. The key is to not overdo it and reuse at appropriate times! Check us out on Twitter and Facebook for more information and ideas.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

5 Easy Ways To Keep Visitors On Your Website for Longer

Decrease bounce rate and increase time spent on site. These two factors are highly sought after and can always be optimized to be even better. Here are 5 ways you can improve your website and capture a visitor’s attention for longer:

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1) Program a Contact Form to Pop Up Before They Leave – Are visitors bouncing quickly and not staying as long as you’d like? You can see the average time spent on an important page, like your home page, before bouncing. By using a third party contact form service, like nGage, you can program it so that the form will pop up and gently remind and encourage users to make contact before leaving. It’s all about taking crucial action within the right amount of time.

2) Use Relevant Content and Striking Visuals That Match – The images on your website can be stunning but without colorful language and the right words, it’s not useful for search engines or users. While we all can appreciate a beautiful website, it doesn’t mean much if there is no depth to the site. On the other hand, you can have the best content in the world but when paired with bad or drab design, doesn’t help your cause. Keep visitors interested by being personable and asking and answering questions they can relate to. Don’t forget to address user intent.

3) Showcase Helpful User Generated Content – We talk about UGC all the time and for a good cause. It’s possible to showcase reviews and testimonials while being trustworthy. You can cite the source of the review, ask a customer to do a video testimonial or even display a hand-written thank you note. These are all special and unique ways to show visitors that you do care and have happy customers to thank for your business’ success.

4) Improve Site Speed and Load Time – This is perhaps one of the most important factors to address. Especially when dealing with high load times and high bounce rates. A study last year found that the average website speed load time was 7.25 seconds. What are we dealing with? Dial-up load speeds? Unfortunately… not. Many websites have difficulty with bigger images and more complex web pages, which adds up. For each second longer your website takes to load, you could be losing a great deal of customers. Simply, because they don’t want to wait for your site to load. And why should they? There’s a lot of competition out there. Compressing images, cleaning up bulky code will help speed up your site and keep visitors interested for much longer.

5) Choose Links Wisely – Choosing links for a home page can be a difficult test. You want to put everything that’s most important linked from the home page. But you also want visitors to find what they’re looking for quickly. There has to be a balance between being SEO friendly and optimizing for user experience. The struggle is between aesthetics and utility but you don’t have to sacrifice one for the other. It’s an issue of organization and making sure visitors can get to what they want in a reasonable amount of clicks (about 3). Luckily, you can always create different versions and split test on real-life users at a reasonable cost. This is an option that’s easy to implement and will help you get real feedback from people who aren’t biased by seeing your website every day!

Getting visitors to your website is quite an uphill battle, so once you’re at the top, you don’t want to lose them. Keep these tips in mind for increasing new visitor time on site and let us know if you have any other tips or suggestions!

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

There’s More To Writing Website Content Than Writing

As a writer, there is so much more to the craft than just writing. Writing website content actually involves more skills and parts of your brain than you would imagine!

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Inspire

Nothing is worse than writer’s block. Writing content for a website isn’t something normally associated with a “creative” endeavor. But it can really take a lot out of you just to think of some new, interesting, and unique to write about.

As an SEO content writer, it helps to draw from your own personal experiences, thoughts, and feelings. Making these correlations and translating them into fully formed thoughts is a starting point for inspiration. You can be inspired by many things that happen throughout the day. If you’re not feeling so inspired, all it takes is a few clicks to see what others are thinking and writing about. Not only does it help you write about something you’re passionate about, but it gives you a better idea of what people want to read about.

Brainstorm

How do you write about something that a thousand people have already written about. It’s important to think about why you want to write about something, not just that you need to write it. Even though your topic has been written about, you need a plan of attack to differentiate your words. Sure, writers have deadlines but that doesn’t mean you should cut corners. Especially, with an important first step of brainstorming. Brainstorming for website content will give you a good idea of what you want to accomplish and what needs to be accomplished. For example: a step-by-step tutorial, a 3 part series or an FAQs page.

Organize

No matter what your style of writing is, there is a certain standard layout to follow. There will always need to be some sort of introduction and conclusion. You need to establish what you’re going to talk about, why and sum it up. Somewhere in the middle there, it’s up to you to fill up the bulk of content with interesting thoughts, shocking facts or statistics and real-life examples.

When you are writing website content, you know what you want to say. The struggle lies in how you want it laid out for the reader. Don’t scare readers away with your lack of organization!

Research

Research includes finding out more about your topics, current news and what peers/competitors are saying. Competitive analysis certainly counts as research. Reading different types of information is important in your research. It doesn’t help to get information from the same source, especially if it’s one that you keep going back to. This is why you need to include: whitepapers, articles, blog posts, press releases, and even social media updates in part of your research. Diversifying your sources in research helps you form a well-rounded opinion and helps support your point of view. This is what you want to see when reading website content!

Educate

As a writer, it’s your job to educate yourself before you educate others. Misinformation (especially deliberate) isn’t going to go over well with your readers. In industries like SEO, best practices are always changing. It’s important to stay educated through watching webinars, undergoing training and attending conventions. Education is a foundation of the writing process whether you’re writing about canopies, health services, scooters or precious metals!

Optimize

In many ways, optimization stands alone and outside of the writing process. But it today’s world of website content, it’s best when a writer can do both. Remember, that content is meant for readers first and search engines after. Optimizing web content means creating engaging titles, delivering what you promise, linking relevant sites and giving readers a reason to read and link. You want to attract natural links through the power of your words/content alone.

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Create

At the end of the day, a content writer wants to create something that is meaningful. It’s a good thing that useful content isn’t just something reserved for text on a website. There’s so much more you can do, including: infographics, social updates, videos and pictures. There’s so much more to writing than typing away, get out there and create!

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.

Video Marketing Works

Online video is one of the best ways to capture an audience and convey a message. Increasingly popular is website video marketing. YouTube makes up 10% of all internet traffic, this makes YouTube an important resource for promoting yourself or message because there are millions of people actively searching for something. There are many sites you can post on for video marketing but because of YouTube already has such a large established network it is a community I suggest you join. If you are posting a video on YouTube one of the first things you should do is customize your social media account. Not only will you be able to change how your account looks, by altering colors and fonts, but you can also add links back to your business websites. Once you have done that you should begin to look for popular channels where the subscribers are active on YouTube. You should then build relationships with these active users, consider yourself the new member of a club, you need to be friendly and interesting. That way you can begin to build your list of friends and grow your network. These are just some basic steps that anyone considering YouTube marketing should look into. These days it is not enough to simply put your video out there and sit back. You have to be active and the more dedication you put into expanding your network, the greater the returns.

Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.