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5 Web Site Updates for Boring Businesses
Posted on April 28th 2014
Everyone who runs a web site for their business has some sense that they need to be updating their site regularly. Some people have set a production schedule for updating the site, including an editorial calendar that assigns different types of content updates to various staff in the company. They have a trove of information and content from which they can pull interesting tidbits when things get slow in the office and there's not much to report. They're prepared and ready at all times, secure in the knowledge that they'll always be able to keep their sites fresh.
This blog post is not for those people. They're too perfect already.
This is for those businesses and organizations who, like lots of our clients, have no idea what they could do to update their site regularly. They just walk around all the time worrying that they haven't updated, Google is going to shun them, and they'll die alone and penniless -- all because they couldn't figure out what to add to their site every X number of days as prescribed by "the SEO people." Here are five ideas for things you could add to your site semi-regularly -- between exciting blog posts and product announcements.
#1: Take Some Photos
Have you updated anything in your office lately? Do you have a new display in your store? A new employee? Is it possible that you have some people on staff or products that you have never showed on your web site? Do a quick "featured photo" on your home page with just a few lines of text describing it. Here's an example:
#2: Give Some Tips
Surely there are things your customers, clients, or community does that could use a little improvement. If you are a service provider, this is easy. You're looking at my tips right now! For you, these tips could include any number of ways to improve life for the people you're serving or to whom you're selling products:
- How to prepare for an appointment with you
- How to know when it's time for them to call you
- How to find other complementary resources
- How to navigate your community -- maps to your office or business, best parking near you, etc.
- Fun tips that have nothing to do with your core business, but give a little glimpse into your personality
- Holiday or seasonal related tips
#3: Answer a Question
If you put a question box on your reception desk or an "anonymous question" form on your web site, you can slowly collect a fair number of questions which can be answered whenever you'd like. You'd be surprised what your clients pretend to grasp but really do wish they understood better. This can be a long, Dear-Abby kind of question and answer, or something really simple in a sidebar on your site:
#4: Share What You're Reading
You're keeping up with what's going on in your industry, right? If you find something especially interesting, you can share it on your web site in a way that makes your opinion on it the real value. Some examples of this might be:
- An article about your industry that you think was great -- pull some quotes from it that you love and share them on your home page
- An article about your industry that you think was awful -- summarize your arguments against it and offer a counterpoint
- A book you wish your customers would read to help them understand what you do or why you do it -- set up an Amazon Affiliate page and suggest they buy it
#5: Offer Some Friendly Reminders
Slightly different from the tips I mentioned above, these are more like reminders of things that are already on your site. Maybe you're getting a lot of calls or questions about things that you were sure you had made easy to find. This is a good chance for you to pull out soundbites of really crucial information and move it to other places on the site that might be getting more traffic.
For example, have you noticed that people call a lot to ask you when your store closes for the day? It may be time to add the store hours to more than one place on the site. You can use a sidebar, footer, or even a very thin additional header to list hours. The same goes for things like downloadable guides, product lists, services offered, or just quick-links to the most visited page.