Publishing a website is a monumental step for any business - it puts you on the map and says to the world, "We're open for business"
But once the website has been live for some time, businesses should also revisit their website to give it a refresh. With an established and recognizable site, now is the time to focus on improving content and visitor conversions.
Quick updates on the backend can yield serious results for conversions and overall revenue.
If your website's due for a revamp, make these nine changes today.
1. Fix typos and grammatical errors
Typos happen, but for your business to be taken seriously, your website text needs to be grammatically correct and error-free.
Little spelling errors translate to inauthentic and untrustworthy in the online world. To avoid leaving visitors with this impression, review all of the text on your website for misspellings and errors.
If possible, your should also have someone who is less familiar with your content to read through it - they can be objective and more easily spot errors in your text.
2. Broken link check
Fixing broken links is essential for better website visitor conversions. Having valid backlinks feeds into the credibility of your site, and can boost your performance in search.
So what exactly does fixing broken links entail? You need to go through all the hyperlinks on your website and check that they are working properly and load in a timely manner. Even if the links worked when you initially placed them on your site, it doesn't mean they haven't become broken in the interim.
Is the thought of going through every URL on your website too much to handle? There are services available that will scour your site for broken links and identify the ones that need to be resolved. Online Broken Link Checker and Dead Link Checker are two reputable free resources that are great for small businesses.
3. Add social media buttons
Social media buttons are often added after the first iteration of a website goes live. If your business has an active social media strategy, place individual buttons or widgets for each social platform on your website.
Social buttons are most commonly housed in the header or footer of a page and are clustered together.
You can see an example here - Anthropologie has clustered its social profiles and blog buttons in its website footer, which is consistent across every page of the site. This way, readers can always easily click and view the social profiles or read its blog content.
Image courtesy of Anthropologie
Their robust social media strategy implies the business is comprehensive and growing. Convey these same sentiment and gain more conversions by keeping the button design clean and simple. Those little icons will encourage likes and follows across your social profiles, and ultimately yield higher response.
4. Remove any outdated content
Along with removing typos and grammatical errors, it's time to revisit your site's content.
Review everything - from text to promotions to event descriptions - so that only timely and relevant information remains.
New content provides a reason for people to visit your site time and time again. If a website has too much old content, it looks dated and forgotten.
Give your visitors the right impression by continually updating your content, so that it always appears fresh and new.
5. Mobile optimization
Since most people are viewing websites on mobile devices, ensuring your site is optimized for both desktop and mobile will mean your site is rendering in the best way, regardless the viewer's device of choice.
6. Change your narrative
Small business website text should be written in the second person, so the reader feels like you're speaking to them - they instantly become part of the conversation when they read language geared toward them.
Remove any "I" statements and change them to "you." These simple swaps will pivot the reader's perspective and make them feel more connected to the business.
Speaking from the consumer's point of view is a tried and true way to get more website conversions.
7. Conduct a brand audit
Do a website brand audit to ensure your site still meets your brand standards.
Although the vision and mission of a brand generally remain consistent throughout a company's lifecycle, fonts, colors, and logos are destined to evolve. Review these elements and make any necessary changes so that your website is compliant with your brand, and that all your digital and print marketing materials have a consistent look and feel.
8. Simplify navigation
It's easy to be heavy-handed when creating your navigation panel, however less is more when it comes to conversions.
Consider what the consumers are coming to your website for and make it as simple as possible to find those things. Whittle down how many sub-pages you have for each category and put the large call to action categories in the header panel. Reduce confusion and page bounce rates by clearly outlining where to go for what in your navigation menu.
9. Create custom 404 error page
Errors happen, but having a branded error page makes it look like your business is in control of the problem and actively solving it.
An error page is an opportunity for your business to reinforce its brand promise. By acknowledging the error in an upfront way, it breeds trust in the business instead of making the viewer feel like they've stumbled upon an illegitimate or closed business.
Create a page that feels like your brand, but has fun with the error, so it doesn't come across as a huge slight against your company.
Lego and Hubspot have each done a great job of designing customer 404 error pages that convey their brand's ideals while making light of the website error.
Image courtesy of Lego
image courtesy of HubSpot
Think about how your business can frame an error message while staying on brand and bring levity to an otherwise undesirable search outcome.
With a little time and effort, you can transform your business website into a conversion-generating marketing tool. These steps will take your small business website from basic to brilliant. Apply the nine tips with care to gain the traffic and customers your business deserves.
Main image via Unsplash/Pixabay