How old is your family car?
• Do you change it regularly to get all the new features and fuel savings?
• Or do you hold onto it until the fender is hanging off and the repair costs outstrip the value of the car?
Now, how old is your website?
• Is it fast and responsive, or a little slow off the mark?
• It it attractive and shiny, or a bit tired and rusty?
The good news is that with websites, unlike cars, you don’t have to rush out and buy a whole new one to get the latest features and styles. You can update the one you already have from Akira!
Why should I update my website?
Your website is your online 24/7/365 storefront for your business. It’s like a window display in a store, advertising your services. It’s also a source of valuable business information, and for an increasing number of potential customers, their first port of call when checking out your company.
So if your website hasn’t been changed for ages, it’s the equivalent of a tired, dusty store window display, still displaying Halloween costumes in July. A spring clean and a spruce up would do it the world of good. Here’s how.
1. Make it mobile friendly
Is your website mobile friendly? Here’s how to find out - look at it on a mobile device. If it looks exactly like your website when viewed on a desktop PC, but very (very) small, it isn’t responsive. If it looks quite different, with clear text followed by images, it is mobile friendly. If you have the time and budget, your first priority should be to upgrade your website to a responsive design. This is the equivalent of replacing that rusting family car with a newer, used car with a little mileage already on the clock; it’s more efficient, more effective but also less costly than a whole new site from scratch.
2. Refresh the text
There is no escaping the fact that the web still works through words. Even if you’re hip and groovy and dictate your search query into your super-slim mobile phone, it is still converted to written text for Google to process. In the world of search engine optimisation (SEO), content is king. So, make yours the best you possibly can. Read every page on your website (yes, every page), and check the information on each page is well written, flows logically and most of all, accurately reflects what your company offers today. Then allocate some time and budget to get your text refreshed and rewritten (we can help with this if you wish).
3. Research new keywords
Are you guilty of manspreading on the metro? Do you give good bants to your bruhs, or get handry if you don't want to pay the cakeage at your fav café? These are all words added to the Oxford Dictionary last year. So, if your keyword research is older than two years, it could be seriously out of date, especially if you’re in a fast-changing marketplace. Refresh your keywords list, and bring yourself up to date so your website isn’t drumbling on…
4. Add more exciting stuff
OK, time to work on that window display! Every Akira website gives you access to your backend CMS (content management system). Here, you can change almost all the content on any page of your website. You can add new photos, videos, sound files, you can update text, etc, almost anytime you like. So, get out there and take new photos of your business. Video your new production facility, your CEO talking about the exciting new products coming up, or your garden maintenance service in action and pop the result on your website. If you host your website with Akira Studio, your monthly fee includes an allowance for us to some of this for you, if you prefer.
5. Write a blog, any blog!
Every website should have a blog. In fact, most Akira Studio websites already do. The trick here is to use it! Posting a blog adds fresh, new content to your website that search engines love. It’s really easy - all you need to do is write around 300 words on something your customers will find interesting, and copy it and paste it into a new blog. Add a picture, press the Publish button and - bingo, job done!
6. Get social
Like it or loath it, social media is part of the business landscape. If you use it for nothing else, use it to ‘advertise’ your latest blog post. Social media is currently the biggest bargain in online marketing because it’s free - all you need is a little time to do it. (Or a budget so we can do it for you!)
7. BOOK a facelift
Just like your car can be resprayed, a website can be reskinned. This means we simply overlay a fresh, new face onto your existing site, to give it a cleaner, newer look. This is particularly cost-effective on Wordpress websites, which is why we now offer WP website design as well as websites built in Joomla. However, do bear in mind that a reskin doesn’t add more features or improve the technical website underneath, it just makes it look better.
BONUS TIP: invest in a new website
Eventually, every beloved family car needs to be retired and replaced. If you opt for a brand new car, you get all the benefits of new features like sat nav, better fuel efficiency, more eco-friendly running, and of course, the admiring looks from the neighbours too! It’ll also start on time, cost much less to maintain, have more room for your growing family, and (hopefully) gives you years of trouble-free motoring. The same applies to websites. Sometimes, it's more cost-effective to retire the old one and build a new one. So, if your website is reaching the end of its life, or no longer is suitable for your growing business, it may be time to budget for a new one. Call us to discuss your requirements, no obligation, and we’ll custom-build a website that’ll power past your competition on the internet highway…