Let’s take an objective look at YOUR website
Let’s say you have a storefront. And it’s in need of painting and repairs. Often it’s very easy for the owner to see that it needs some attention. People who visit are forming an opinion when they look at your building. They decide whether or not they want to do business with you. An unsightly exterior may keep people from coming in. Inaccurate hours posted on your door may annoy someone who sprang out of bed at 7:00 am to visit your establishment, but you opened at 9:00am. Is the interior of your business neat? Can customers find what they need? It’s the same with your website. No one wants to visit if the site is unappealing, it never changes, if the information is inaccurate and not easy to find.
Branding was something successful business owners did before the internet too. The really successful ones cared about how they and their business appeared to potential customers. Now you have the opportunity to do it in person and on the internet, depending upon your business. So don’t make the mistake of leaving out the people who refer to the internet for everything. It absolutely, positively will keep part of your customers away. Why leave any money on the table?
Business owners have a lot on their plates and a website is a big thing. Hey, it feels really good to do something and have it done. BUT…to make the most of the relatively inexpensive marketing tool that you call your website, it’s easy, not time-consuming and necessary to keep it fresh.
Here are some of the negative experiences I’ve had on a website:
- Wrong hours, wrong days open
- Wrong location (this was a doctor…and the building had burnt down 6 months prior)
- Wrong menu (on my anniversary I was told that the menu online was an old one and that they were now vegetarian and had new owners)
- Very outdated website that wasn’t appealing (black background with html)
- Confusing website content
- Outdated pricing
- Employees that no longer work there
- Scheduling calendars that don’t work
- General information about a service, but no idea who provided it, how much it cost and what you had to do “next”
- Internet store that didn’t work (wouldn’t go to payment)
- Page never loading
- Pictures never loading
- Links that don’t work
- Photos misplaced on page
- Spelling and grammar errors
- A dig-me About page (customers want to see what you offer for them)
- Information that’s obviously from many years ago. For example, an event you held in May of 2014 on an outdated topic.
- An owner picture from 1970 (how will they even recognize you now?)
- Nothing interactive that makes me want to go back
- Making the customer have to click on ten pages in order to get important information. And if it’s slow to load, people click off.
Unfortunately, these are just some of the bad experiences. Did they keep me from their business? In most cases, yes.
People who visit your website are forming an opinion about your business based on the perception and experience of your website. So the “message” you send to the world really matters.
Today I’m going to ask you to take a very objective look at your website. I want you to pretend that you are a potential customer Use the checklist below for some general items, but make sure you look at your website for changes that will help people who are searching for what you offer to choose YOU! Since it’s the “exterior” of your internet image, keep it fresh and updated.
- Be honest. Is your website outdated? Maybe it’s time for a new look or a new website? An updated website is an investment in your business.
- Is your contact information easy to find and prominently displayed? (Phone, email, address)
- Does your contact page form information go to a working email that you have access to? (OMG, the amount of people who just let leads go!)
- Have your logo and business colors changed? Only you didn’t change them on your website? Branding needs to be consistent.
- Do you include social media links? (Make sure the info there is up-to-date, too)
- Are the hours of your business accurate?
- Is it clear what products and services you offer?
- Does your website include relevant and helpful content for all your products and services?
- How does your website compare to competitor websites?
- Does it contain too much information or not enough about your unique product or service?
- Is there some function you can benefit from on your website? Example: Event listings, storefront, chat function, etc?
- If you have a blog, was the last time you wrote something three years ago? If you aren’t going to use it, have your designer take it off the site. Or write blog posts.
You need to make your first online impression count because you might not get another chance!
If you are a TMP Media Group customer, you can submit a ticket to make changes that will keep your website fresh and new. Submit a ticket here.
If you are not, it’s likely we can help you with a new website, refresh or website maintenance to make sure you are making that website work for you and your business! Call (570) 352 3048 and find out how we can help you!