Signs it's Time to Update Your Website Immediately

Your Website Isn’t Secure

This is a big one. Especially if you have customer accounts, login information or even just to maintain consumer trust. If your website is hacked and client information is compromised or your information is compromised this can create a massive lack of trust that harms your business. Review the framework and platform for your site to ensure the security certificates are up to date and everything is compliant with new regulations.  

Your Content is Out of Date

Your website isn’t serving you or your customers. Out of date content makes visitors question whether you’re still in business rather than looking to you as an authority, especially if the content in question is your contact info! Making sure all your content is up to date and keeping your blog content fresh will bring more traffic to your site and keep visitors coming back.

Your Website Looks Dated

I’m not saying you have to be up to the second with the latest graphic trends in web design but a clearly outdated design at best will be off-putting and at worst be annoying. While trends come and go some styles are dead and gone - flash (it’s no longer supported by most mobile devices and lowers your search ranking), things that blink on and off, splash pages. A good general rule of thumb is to update your site every two to four years, keeping your design, navigation and content fresh and up to date.

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Your Website is Not Mobile Friendly

Some businesses think this isn’t that big of a deal and that it certainly isn’t a reason to rush into updating their website but with 57% of all U.S. website traffic alone coming from smartphones and tablets this is one of those changes that should be considered mandatory. Mobile usage surpassed desktop browsing in 2015, not to mention Google’s ranking system evaluates whether or not your website is mobile friendly.

Your SEO is Struggling

I’m not suggesting you have to become an SEO master and rank number one on Google but if you’re not even registering on search engines or ranking for relevant keywords it’s probably time to reconsider your strategy and update your website. If you don’t have a blog yet, this is the perfect time to add one and update it regularly with content that drives traffic.

Your Website is Impossible to Navigate

Customer experience plays a big role in purchasing habits these days and website user experience is a part of the overall customer experience. If people struggle to find what they’re looking for, are constantly coming across broken links or are just straight up overwhelmed while visiting your site it’s time to get things streamlined and reevaluate what information is the most relevant for your audience.

Your Website Isn’t Doing It’s Job

A quick look at your analytics can give you all the information you need on whether it’s time to update or not. People aren’t visiting your site, or they are but they don’t stick around, and forget about contacting you or making a purchase. If your website isn’t converting at all, what is the point in even paying for hosting? It’s not doing its job.

You Can’t Manage Your Content

You’re looking over your website for the things mentioned in this blog, you notice overall it’s doing pretty well but there are a few spelling errors and a few small changes you could fix yourself, but you can’t. Whether it’s because you don’t know how to code, you don't have access or the person who does update your website costs $100 an hour. It’s time to update.

With all the platforms available today there’s no reason you shouldn’t have the ability to change small things without having to worry about whether or not you’ll blow up the whole website or incur a $500 bill.

Platforms like Squarespace are secure, provide a user-friendly experience and make updating content a breeze.

If you’re ready to get your website redesigned and up and running in two weeks flat using Squarespace I can help.

Five Ways to Foster Engagement With Your Audience

If you’ve been reading my blog regularly you know that social media engagement helps build customer-brand relationships, strengthens brand loyalty and increases word of mouth advocacy which is a much more potent tool than advertising to cold customers. However, I hear from so many people that their biggest struggle these days is community engagement. There’s a good reason for that too. Content engagement has dropped by over 50%  in the last three years. That doesn’t mean all is lost however, because 92% of marketers still feel social media is important for businesses.

So what’s caused this drop in engagement? There’s a wide range of factors including the declining reach of Facebook pages, the misconception that simply being on social media is enough and customers who have become desensitized to the deluge of content that brands pump out every single day.

If you’ve seen a drop in your engagement rates or have just been struggling from the get-go, here are ten tips to help you break out of the slump and get people talking.

Be Active and Consistent

The biggest thing you can do is be responsive. The key to social media is to be social! Look at your own habits while on social media. Are you just mindlessly scrolling and sprinkling the occasional like here and there or are you leaving thoughtful comments and engaging with others? I’m a very firm believer that when it comes to social media you get what you give. If you’re just throwing up content for the sake for content and not engaging with people that’s exactly what you’ll get back.

So what’s the solution? Create content your customers are genuinely interested in and have genuine conversations around it. Responding, thoughtfully and consistently shows your audience that you’re invested make time for your customers.

Have a Personality

People are going to make judgments about your brand based on how you’re engaging with them on social media. That’s okay. When done well customers with shared values will gravitate towards your business. So know your brand voice. Are you sassy like Wendy’s? Or upbeat like Starbucks? Own it and don’t be afraid to let your brand personality shine.

Don’t be afraid to reply to comments and messages with GIFs or memes either, this can inject some fun into your page. Though with that said don’t use them for every reply and make sure you understand the meme before you use it.

Have a Clear Message and Call to Action

We’re living in an age of transparency. Audiences know when they're tricked into something. 66% of people feel deceived when they realize they’ve been baited into reading paid or sponsored content. Use clear words like “subscribe”, “download and “follow”. Your audience is much more likely to interact if you’re clear in your message.

A bit of a disclaimer here, however, don’t put all your content behind a download or subscribe wall. Don’t be afraid to giveaway some free information, the people who really want to work with you will. The information you provide to your audience illustrates your expertise and the right people will realize they could use their time to do it themselves or they could hire you. The bargain hunters will just use the freebies and move on.

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Provide an Inside Look of Your Company

People don’t want to connect with a faceless entity, they want to connect with people. Show your audience behind the scenes, your processes, let them get to know the people behind the business, particularly if you’re a small business. There are plenty of people out there who love to support small businesses or feel better about where they’re spending their money when they know the faces behind the business.

Use Your Customers Content

People tell me time and time again that another big hurdle they face is knowing what to post, but if you have a good following on social media chances are your customers are talking and sharing content that you could easily share on your account as well. Many people are happy to let brands feature their images or feedback, most of the time you just have to ask. But what if people aren’t? Ask them to! Set up a contest where people have to share a photo or a video or ask people to share a picture of their favourite product of yours. Chances are the ones who are excited about what you’re doing will be happy to be involved.

Have you put all this into action and still find your engagements rates are still struggling? Let’s talk about the different ways I can help you build your audience and create meaningful engagement with your customers.

How To Make Pinterest Part of Your Digital Marketing Strategy

How To Make Pinterest Part of Your Digital Marketing Strategy

More than 250 million people use Pinterest every month according to Pinterest for Business. These people use Pinterest to plan everything from weekly meals, trips to home renovations. They aren't just dreamers either, 98% of Pinterest users have tried something they've found on Pinterest and 84% use the platform when they're trying to decide what to buy. If you're curious about how to make Pinterest part of your digital marketing strategy and reach potential customers let me highlight some of the ways you can leverage Pinterest for your service based business. 

One of the Best Ways To Reach Your Ideal Customers

One of the Best Ways To Reach Your Ideal Customers

You're posting to social media every day, maybe even multiple times a day, following 50 people a day (or whatever random number the latest "guru" has said), writing content weekly and promoting but after all that you're left with crickets. Does this situation sound familiar? If so, chances are you're not really sure who you're trying to reach. This leaves both you and your customers confused. 

Why You Need to Know the Difference Between Digital and Social Media Marketing

Why You Need to Know the Difference Between Digital and Social Media Marketing

You might be thinking, "Isn't digital marketing just posting to social media?" You wouldn't be alone in this, many people think that by posting to social media they are taking care of their digital marketing strategy. This is only partially true. There are many components to digital marketing or a digital marketing campaign and social media should be a portion of your overall digital marketing strategy.