The Importance of Updating Your Website

Creating a website is a great accomplishment, and often the start of lucrative businesses or exciting opportunities. However, the work isn’t finished once the website is completed. Website maintenance is important to be sure your visitors are getting the very best information, that maneuvering through the website is easy, and that you’re converting more visitors into customers.

Updated Content

It’s important that the content on your website is always updated, so that individuals receive the latest news and information. You can avoid having to update content regularly if the content is “green” or relevant at all times. To ensure that your content is green, avoid references to current events or anything else that might date the content. If new products or updates are released, be sure that the information is added to the content on your website.

Navigation

If a new product or service is added to your website, it’s important to ensure that the navigation is easy. If a new page is added, it should be available from the home page, and it should be easy to move from that product page back to the home page, and throughout the rest of the website. Visitors can get frustrated easily if it’s not easy to get from page to page on your website, and this could result in lost customers.

Backing Up Your Website

Another important part of website maintenance is backing up your website. Sometimes, technology fails, and the last thing you want is to lose all of your website’s information and formatting. This is especially true if you’re updating frequently, or having other professionals work on your website content, design or other aspects. It should be backed up frequently, so if something does happen, you still have access to your website files. Backing up your website at least once a month is a great idea.

Links

Another thing you’ll want to do is make sure that all of your links are working. If customers attempt to click on links that aren’t working or that take them to an error page, they may easily become frustrated. This can result in the loss of potential customers as well as a decreased number of conversions. There are link checker tools that you can use, so it’s relatively easy to make sure each link on your website is working.

Platform Updates

If your website is created with a platform like WordPress or something similar, it’s important that you regularly update the platform. There are usually updates fairly regularly with these services, and those updates make the website run more smoothly and operate more efficiently. Most offer alerts when updates are available, so keep your eye on that and update when updates are available.

Website maintenance is about more than just adding new content. It’s important that the website runs smoothly and is user-friendly for those who visit. This can go a long way toward increasing conversions and in turn, increasing sales and profits.

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WittyCookie is an award-winning digital agency that specializes in affordable web design, graphic design, and SEO solutions to help small businesses grow.

Service plans start at just $19/month, all-inclusive with web design, web hosting, email setup, ongoing maintenance, and unlimited updates. We charge no setup fee, no cancellation fee, and no term contracts with a full money back guarantee.

Visit wittycookie.com to get started.

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7 Small Business SEO Tips

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Every year SEO gets more complicated as Google rolls out updates and changes the rules. This is especially frustrating for small business owners who don’t have the time or resources to stay current in, what they believe to be, an esoteric and confusing industry.

Here are seven small business SEO tips to help earn more business through traditional organic search rankings.

1. Onsite SEO is Necessary But Not Sufficient

Yes, optimizing title tags, site structure (keep it flat) and load-speed are important. Many experiments have shown these elements are in the Google algorithm.

Don’t obsess. Hire someone to run an assessment and tune up the site; then move-on. Far too many small businesses get stuck at the starting line.

2. Website Content & Experience Are Critical

We have all read that “content is king,” but what does that really mean?

Your website must have engaging content for the end-user. The importance of this can’t be overstated. It will impact time-on-site, conversion and SEO (engaging content is more likely to be shared and linked to).

It is also critical because it orients the small business webmaster towards offering something of value. Thin content leaves a bad footprint, both onsite and offsite.

3. Use Content Marketing to Earn Backlinks

Most small business owners are savvy enough to know that 70 percent of their search engine rankings are the result of backlinks. Being a pragmatic bunch, they then ask “where can I buy some?”

Don’t buy backlinks – it also leaves a bad footprint.

Small business marketers need to earn links, and content marketing is extremely effective for gaining earned links. The trick is in the trade. Something of value must be offered.

Quality content containing humor, information, controversy, politics or training usually brings backlinks – and is definitely considered acceptable SEO.

4. Know Your Backlink Profile

There has been healthy debate recently about the changing role of anchor text in the Google algorithm. Even if the importance is fading, it is clearly still a factor.

Small businesses should know their backlink profiles. A lack of branded anchors and brand mentions is a clear signal of manipulation, and therefore a rank killer.

Healthy businesses market their brands through press releases and are discussed in forums by name. This all leaves a good footprint.

Co-citation is also a sign of a natural backlink profile. Strong companies are mentioned in the same paragraph as other strong brands.

Articles with a single anchored link to a website with low domain authority sticks out like a sore thumb. Google can spot these insubstantial articles and weighs the links accordingly, or worse.

5. Create Buzz Through Community Building

While the term link bait is perhaps overused, it is considered an acceptable activity by Google. This is because the activity is aimed toward creating a positive end-user experience.

Without a community element, link baiting is hard to distinguish from content marketing. Developing a community (best if done onsite) is perhaps the best link bait of all because the community starts to develop the content in ways no SEO consultant could ever think of.

This is truly organic, extremely natural, and helps SEO.

6. Quality Over Quantity

It is tempting to fall for the email solicitations for large quantities of inexpensive links. But we all know where that got JCPenney.

The SEO industry isn’t like the automobile industry, where automation is praised as a gain in efficiency. Automation in SEO is bad because Google says it is. They believe it results in a poorer end-user experience, an argument that has merit.

Small businesses may not like this rule, but they do need to respect it if they want to see increases in rankings.

7. Review the SEO Reports

Small business owners are busy, but that is no excuse for not knowing what the SEO consultant is doing. It’s important to digest the monthly reports for a couple of reasons:

  • The results should be moving in the right direction. Don’t expect miracles, just monthly progress.
  • The monthly reports should demonstrate that the SEO team is executing with a disciplined process. Small business should not foot the bill for experiments. There is enough risk facing small business owners already.

Conclusions

Google is a computer, largely, and needs to be thought of as such. The major elements in the algorithm are fairly well understood.

While it’s true that updates are frequent and the rules of the game do shift, the major elements of onsite SEO and backlinks have been the fuel for better rankings for years. Follow these seven small business SEO tips to earn better rankings and build a community around your brand. And ignore the rest as noise.

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WittyCookie is an award-winning digital agency that specializes in affordable web design, graphic design, and SEO solutions to help small businesses grow.

Service plans start at just $19/month, all-inclusive with web design, web hosting, email setup, ongoing maintenance, and unlimited updates. We charge no setup fee, no cancellation fee, and no term contracts with a full money back guarantee.

Visit wittycookie.com to get started.