It’s important to stay up to date with the times. If you’re a business person you know that you need to know what’s going on in your industry and if you have a brick and mortar location then you understand that you don’t want it looking old if you can help it. When you have a website you need to approach it with the same mindset, making sure that your website doesn’t fall behind in terms of content and trends.
In this article we will look at the very concrete ways that updating your website can help you and the strategies you can employ to get the most out of everything you invest in your website.
Reasons To Keep Working On Your Site
Everything in the business world is about balancing costs with rewards. Many people instinctively know that updating their site could help it but those changes mean investing time or money into your site. You probably already have a long list of things you could be doing so why should updating your site be near the top?
Trust is one of the most valuable resources in the online business world. Because the internet is often anonymous it’s easy to pretend that you are someone you’re not, and that you know things you don’t. People understand this and will be looking for signs that suggest whether they can trust what your site has to say. If they find that one important piece of information on your page is out of date then they will question the value of the other information on your site. If people notice that most of the posts on your site haven’t been touched in years then they might try and find a site that has fresher content.
There is also a technical reason for regularly working on your site, search engines like Google consider how fresh a site is when ranking it. The reasoning is simple enough, people want information that is up to date and more recent sites are more likely to be with the times in this regard. If you want to help people find your site through Google then keep making meaningful changes and additions.
Security of your site is another reason. Recently there was a general community announcement for all buyers of WordPress items to be aware of an XSS vulnerability affecting multiple WordPress plugins and themes. The vulnerability is caused by a common code pattern used in WordPress plugins and themes available from many sources. Anyone using a WordPress website, regardless of where the theme or plugin was sourced, needs to be aware of this and take immediate action to ensure their site is secure.
As there is no simple way of knowing exactly which plugins or themes are affected, and the issue is widespread, the best advice is to periodically check for updates to any WordPress themes or plugins you are using and apply those available as soon as possible or have your Webmaster do it.
The final reason that you should update your site is that it helps to show people that you are still around. There are a lot of sites out there advertising companies and services that are defunct. If someone sees that you haven’t made any changes to your site in years then they might assume that you are no longer in business.
Continue Adding Content
There are some types of businesses that can get by with a website that is little more than a homepage but in most cases it’s better to have a few different pages available to your visitors. This is why so many websites have a blog section, blog posts are relatively easy to create and upload so you can keep the content coming.
Some of you might be suspicious of this suggestion because of assumptions about what a blog is. Contrary to what some think blogs don’t have to be personal and they don’t have to be updated daily or even weekly. If you keep a blog on your site that you update monthly with an update about your business then you can reap the rewards of fresh content without having to become anything like a professional blogger.
Just remember that while you don’t need to be a professional writer to create blog posts you still want them to look professional. If you’ve got a restaurant then you don’t want to write about your experiences at other eateries around town just so you can say your site has fresh content. Keep the posts relevant to your site and useful for your visitors. To go back to the restaurant example posting menu changes, seasonal hours and photos from events can all be good ideas to grow your website and help you connect with visitors.
Keep Working On Your Most Popular Pages
Every website has some pages that are more popular than others, and if you want to see the best return on your investment then you should focus on your site’s most valuable pages. Every businessperson should know of the Pareto principle, which says that 80% of the outcome results from 20% of the input. If you have 10 pages on your site then there’s a good chance that 80% of your traffic will go to just two of those pages.
Some people dread the thought of updating their website because if their site has dozens of pages then they might have to spend hours updating each one of them. But if you apply the Pareto principle you can simply update your most popular pages and ignore the less popular pages.
Lets go back to the example of a restaurant website, what are people looking for when they go to a restaurant’s website? They probably want to see the menu, look at the hours and maybe find contact information. Even if the website has dozens of blog posts they probably don’t need to be updated to keep the website up to date, unless one of those blog posts goes viral.
Think about which pages on your site are the most important and check to see which of your pages gets the most traffic. Once you’ve identified your most valuable pages then put in the effort to keep them up to date and add onto them if you can to make them even more useful to visitors.
Imagine a person who is looking to hire a professional in their area for an important job. After a quick internet search they find a website that seems to offer just what they need. Using information from the site they send an email to the company offering them a deal worth thousands of dollars, not knowing that the email address listed on the site is out of date. A few days go by with no response, so the disappointed individual moves on and hires another company.
These sort of mixups happen every day, costing businesses money and wasting potential customers’ time. Handling these problems doesn’t need to involve a complete site overhaul, all you need to do is make sure that you make the necessary changes to your site whenever something about your business changes. This is the basic level of updating that everyone serious about doing business online should commit to.
Whether you want to get your site more traffic or provide better content to the people who are already visiting your site regular updates are a great way to improve your site. Even if you are already low on time to work on your site you should at least make sure that the important information on your site is up to date. When it comes to keeping your site up to date and as useful as possible every little bit helps.
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