The Basics of Your Website

Without a doubt, no matter what the size of your organization is, you must have a website.  I recently read that 55% of people will search online for reviews and recommendations before making a purchase with 47% visiting the company website. If you do not have a web presence, you are missing out on a lot of connections.  Your website is your digital front door and in order to do business, you must have one.

The following are the key ways to create the best digital presence:

  • Have a least a basic website
  • Make sure it is visually appealing
  • Must be usable on mobile devices
  • Make transactions as simple as possible
  • Your content must be interesting and updated on a regular basis
  • Engage with the community on social media

Hiring someone to build a website for you doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg to get your digital presence established.  There are several website builders that offer an assortment of visually appealing designs.  It is also important to invest in a domain name that represents your work in the world. Some basic things to include in the design is placement of your logo, the colors and fonts you use, and quality photography.  All of these things lead to an exciting first impression for visitors.

Social media channels are also a must when building awareness about your services and mission.  There are several channels out there and some work better for certain types of services.  For example, if you are a property manager or real estate broker, Instagram is a must, where as if you are a consultant, LinkedIn is your best bet.

As you start creating your digital presence, have a clear idea of what kind of messaging your are trying to convey in your images and your text.  There are many options for people to check out but the first step is making sure you are in the (digital) neighborhood!

Resources
https://trust.guidestar.org/nonprofit-web-design-6-user-experience-best-practices
https://wpforms.com/the-ultimate-list-of-online-business-statistics/

 

Book: Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook: How to Tell Your Story in a Noisy Social World

I heard about Gary Vaynerchuck’s 2013 book, Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook: How to Tell Your Story in a Noisy Social World, while listening to the RISE podcast by Rachel Hollis.  She spoke so highly about it that I checked it out of my local library to see what I could use as takeaways for my own work as a content creator.

Here is a summary of what I lifted out of the book that might be of interest to you as well.  Admittedly, his style of writing didn’t engage me very easily but I did learn a few things which is the point, right?

There are so many social media channels out there and a whole bunch of new ones being created as you read this!  What I liked in this book was Gary’s simple explanation of how each of these channels are best used:

  • Facebook is all about making friends. Sharing content is the best way to gain a presence.
  • Twitter is the channel to share news and information. It is all about the hashtags.
  • Tumblr is for the artsy crowd.

He writes that ‘social media is the fastest growing marketing sector getting people’s attention.’ That was five years ago and I suspect it is still very much the case.  Bottom line: if you are a business owner or a nonprofit, you have to engage in social media.

Some key suggestions he shared:

  • Keep your call to action simple and easy to understand.
  • Craft content for all types of devices.
  • Respect the nuances of the channel being used to convey to message.
  • Look for topics that are trending and incorporate in your posts.

Native content is key.  What we put on those channels needs to look and sound like other content that is appearing on it. And, as always, good storytelling is a non-negotiable.

Whether you can spend 40 hours or 40 minutes a week on social media, come up with a plan that makes sense for your organization.  If your business or service is a visual one, then Instagram is your best bet, for example.  My tip:  craft a calendar of activities so you are regularly engaged on your channels.  This includes your own posts but also remember to interact with other activity on the channel, too.  No one likes it when you talk too much.

 

 

Your Organization’s Front Door

I work with several clients who own small businesses.  It is a one person shop so they don’t have the resources to hire a full-time content creator to manage their website and social media, let alone produce a podcast about their services.  In my role, I review their websites for link issues and write blog posts to up their SEO presence.  There are many ways (and many hours to do them) to up your SEO game, but small businesses don’t have the bandwidth to dedicate resources to that effort.  However, your website serves as your digital front door for anyone in the world to access your organization’s offerings. But if they don’t find, how can they knock and stop by for a visit?

My philosophy is, if you just do a few things, it goes a long way.  You have to keep updating your site so it relevant in the ever-changing digital landscape.  And, from what I hear, Google adores fresh content. Content also represents your brand, your message to potential clients.  Don’t get me started on algorithms! Using keywords and tags will also deepen your presence on the internet.

If you are looking for support for a website audit, blogging, or social media support, drop me an email.  I’d like to talk with you about some strategies that may help your business!

RESOURCES

https://harnessmedia.net/news/top-7-reasons-update-website/

https://seositecheckup.com/articles/5-reasons-why-fresh-content-is-critical-for-your-website-and-seo