Your corporate website is the ultimate tool to get all of your company’s information out to your customers and prospects. Having a company website is nothing new or innovative but having an optimized website has become an essential part of your company’s marketing efforts.
Your website is usually the first impression you make with your online prospects and visitors. This is why your company website must be informative, clear, intuitive, easy to navigate as well as maintain a professional appearance. Additionally, your business website needs to be optimized so that your website is search engine friendly.
What does this really mean?
Search engines are an indispensable part of the Internet. According to online statistics from comScore, Google alone logs nearly 2 billion searches a day, which implies that many people rely on search engines for information. Websites that are displayed on the first page of search results, and thus have high search rankings, receive significantly more visits than those that rank low for the same sets of keywords. More visits, in turn, may translate into a higher number of customers. Organic search traffic therefore contributes significantly to online marketing success and business growth. Companies should have strong incentives to improve their rankings, thus giving rise to the term SEO, search engine optimization.
Although your content is extremely important, here are 6 elements that every successful business website should have.
So what makes blogging so effective for businesses? One reason lies in its ability to drive
search engine traffic from its fresh content. Search engines favor fresh over old content. Old content might no longer be accurate or relevant to the searches. Fresh content, in contrast, signals to search engines that the information is up-to-date and more relevant to searchers’ needs. As a result, blogs, a generator of fresh content, help with search engine optimization, which in turn drives site traffic and promotes a business. Blogs are a necessity for your business website.
Top 100 Blogs - http://technorati.com/blogs/top100
2. Community – Social Media + Email Sign Up + Comments
Your business website can be a tool for you to compile a loyal following of your content. Create a way for people to sign up and offer their email to your company. You can compile a database of email addresses and send out a monthly eNewsletter that can summarize your blogs over the past month as well other relevant information such as trends, best practices or customer Q&A’s over the past month.
Though the ultimate goal is to sell a product or service, it is important to know that a community does not form around a product or service unless a business proves that its service can empower others. A business should therefore take time to engage and cultivate potential customers. It needs to not just engage them but also engage with an open mind and humility. Positive feedback reflects the quality of the company’s product or service, while negative feedback helps a business understand what aspects of the product or customer service need improvement. No matter what kinds of comments a business receives, showing respect to those in the community reinforces, if not improves, its online reputation.
Invite and encourage your blog readers, customers and prospects to comment and engage in a conversation with you.
3. Calls To Action
A call to action is basically a request to “do something” on your website. It could be a button asking to donate, register, click for information, respond to a poll or, whatever you might want a reader to do. These can be incredibly powerful tools for you to harness. Having a concise number of calls to action can amplify their importance. Offering discounts, giveaways or incentives in exchange for your audience clicking on your calls to action can increase the amount of information you can give out and it can also be a gauge for the amount of interest generated by those calls.
4. Social Media Friendly
Link your business website to all of your social networks. Integrate your various online platforms, and have all of the social media badges in one place. Make it easy for users to follow you on Twitter and like you on Facebook. Use every available channel to promote yourself and provide those channels for your audience. Let your message resonate on more than one site that your followers spend time on. They should see posts from you on Facebook, read tweets, see links to YouTube videos and all of these should drive traffic back to your site.
Keywords are words that a company website wants to be associated with on search engines. A website that optimizes for certain keywords appears in search results when these keywords are searched. They are important because they convey a business searchers’ intent, interest or need. To attract potential customers instead of random visitors, a company needs to understand what keywords potential buyers use to find the kinds of products or services it provides. Keyword selection is therefore key to your company’s search ranking.
On-page search engine optimization is another major contributor to higher search
rankings. On-page SEO is the act of optimizing specific keywords on the most noticeable places of a company website and making it search-engine friendly. An optimized website makes it easy for search engines to find and revisit it, crawl links, and read keyword phrases.
6. Easily Updated
It isn’t very practical if you create a remarkable website if it is too difficult to make changes. It is recommended that you change/update the content on your company website on a fairly regular basis. Using user-friendly web platforms, like WordPress can make website management easy for all of your staff members to use. The easier it is to maintain, the better off you are. Team members can participate in blog efforts and easily contribute to make sure that information about your products, services, events, hiring etc. are updated in a timely fashion.
Is your website optimized to help your business maximize it’s reach and grow?