Get involved with your website

A website is a must-have for all businesses, but with interactive being the buzz word for online presence right now, just setting up a static site and ignoring it isn’t enough anymore. You need to invest time and effort into your site’s performance if you want to make a website work to its full potential for your business.

Firstly, you need to know how well you’re doing, who is looking at your site, where they go, how long they stay…all the statistics that you can find out from good old Google analytics. They sound scary but once you’ve worked out how to use them, they are an absolute bonus for any business, because you’ll be able to work out where most of your traffic comes from and either target that audience more, or look at ways to encourage your preferred audience to click through.

Once you’ve got the cold hard figures, you can ask for feedback from the people who use the site. You’ll have to make this easy for them, and probably offer an incentive such as a freebie or an entry into a competition, because most people are busy and can’t be bothered to leave feedback unless they are complaining! Ask people for their thoughts about the site, try a bullet point questionnaire that takes a few minutes and covers things like ease of use, accessibility, interesting information, and whatever else you need to find out. Asking people what they’d like to see on the site in the future is another good way to target the site to its audience.

Use your results and the Google analytics to build a profile of your average visitor, and make the site something they will want to keep coming back to. How old are your visitors, where are they from, what do they search for and ultimately buy? Armed with that information, you can give them more of what they like and keep them coming back.

Check out your social media – can people link through to your business social media accounts from the site? Have you made it easy for people to follow you, and can they find you easily on Twitter or Facebook?

Another major part of keeping your website relevant is making sure that the information is up to date at all times. It’s not just a Google search thing (although Google does favour sites that contain regularly updated content) it’s common sense. Would you bookmark a website whose last blog entry was six months ago and whose news section was congratulating Kate and William on the birth of Prince George?

Most of these things don’t take long to do, and can make a real difference.