Is 2014 Your Year For a Website Facelift?

Have you noticed that it is almost 2014?

Now is the time to start thinking about how your website can work better for you next year. You’ve probably heard this more than once, but when it comes to online marketing, CONTENT IS KING. According to recent surveys, as many as 61% of consumers say they are more likely to buy from a company that delivers compelling content. If you neglected to create new content for your website in 2013, take some time to develop new content (blog posts, videos, e-books, presentations) that you can begin using on your website in 2014. These days, online consumers are spending more time than ever getting to know companies before they make purchasing decisions. Given that 89% of consumers use the internet to find their goods and services, creating compelling and engaging content for your website is a “must-have” that:

  • Helps Create brand awareness
  • Provides value to your prospective customers
  • Differentiates your company from the competition

Your website is the first impression online visitors will have of you. To help them understand who you are, what you do, and why they should care, start developing new content for your website. Now!

If your site has not been updated in a few years, it is a great time to examine design, layout, functionality, branding, etc. – all of the things that make a new website appealing. Today, websites have to be attractive, with simple navigation and they must send a clear, quick message of why a visitor needs to be here.

Remember, you have between five and ten seconds to grab a visitor.

Make the best of it. And remember to provide a mobile-friendly capability for those on-the-go users. In the holiday season, as much as 70% of retail buying decisions are made on mobile devices while shopping.

It is now more essential than ever for companies to develop effective social media strategies that will allow them to better connect with prospective customers.

If 2013 fell short of your expectations, it might be because you failed to connect with online users. Spend time being more intentional about engaging with users on social media sites like Facebook, Google+ and Twitter. Help them understand who you are, what solutions or services you offer, and why you do what you do. It’s important that you create the perception that your company is open, transparent, and interested in communicating with current and prospective customers. Social media is a tool that will allow you to strengthen your company’s online reputation.

You probably set up or installed analytics on your website for a reason

..(and if you haven’t, you should), but when was the last time you actually spent time looking through and interpreting the data? Dedicate some time to analyze the numbers. If you need help understanding how to use Google Analytics, find a service vendor you can trust to help you.

If you’ve been unhappy with the design or functionality of your website, start making a list of websites that you like to help you decide what updates to make in 2014.

Find out what other companies in your industry are doing. Take notes about what features you like on their sites, not to copy them but to give you food for thought on what may work for you. Pay attention to things like design, usability, content, and anything else that stands out. Doing so will help put you on the path to making the right changes.

Years ago, websites were “nice-to-have” but in today’s digital world they are a necessary part of a marketing strategy. Being without one is like having no strategy at all.

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