There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to keeping your website maintained, but if your a small or start-up business with a relatively new website, there are a few things you should bear in mind.
You probably put a lot of time and thought into your website when you launched your business. You most likely invested a good deal of effort into developing that all important content that was going to communicate your message to your potential customers. You also probably canvassed many opinions about the website - family members, friends ... the dog! Then the big day arrived, you launched your website and you started building your business.
At that point your website possibly took a bit of a back seat. Understandably, you were busy networking and delivering to your new clients. However, your website, although not the only tool within your marketing strategy, is a very important one and your website's maintenance should be ongoing. Six months to a year in, you will have more understanding of who your customers are and it is worth spending a little bit of time re-evaluating the relevance of your website's content.
Here are a few important points to double check and maybe adjust:
- Is the website getting found? Whilst there are no guarantees to Google page rankings, it is worth spending half an hour or so checking if your new website is moving up. Are the keywords that you chose initially, still relevant? For example, you may be targeting a specific market sector or your offerings may have changed as the business has evolved. Make sure your content reflects this.
- Is your key message or mission statement still the same? If it's changed it may be worth adjusting the layout of the site to reflect this. For example, maybe one of your supporting services has become more relevant to your potential customers and may warrant a mention on your website's landing page.
- Do all the links still work? There is nothing more frustrating to a website's visitor than a broken link. If your site does contain links to an external source, make sure that they are still current.
- Are the images still looking fresh? If you have photographs of products, make sure that they are current and that products shown are still available.
- Is the factual and logistical information still up to date? You may have new staff that have joined your team. You may have additional geographical locations that you are able to service. Make sure it's accurate.
These are just a few points that you should be addressing routinely. Only you will know the frequency with which these areas need to be updated. But aside from this, adding fresh content to a site is always a good idea. A frequent site visitor, will notice if the content is stale and out of date. Apart from anything, you can keep in contact with existing customers by alerting them to new content as well as directing any potential customers you are nurturing to your new content.