“68% of consumers say that they have much higher expectations for businesses’ digital capabilities in the wake of COVID-19.”
If you’re sitting there thinking your website is in dire need of an upgrade to keep up with the increasing flow of digital expectations then don’t panic! We have put together four easy to follow steps that you can use to either revamp your website or create a totally new branded one. Here are some Strong Digital recommendations to get your started:
Craft and implement a digital strategy
A digital marketing strategy is one of the first key elements that every business should undertake when undertaking its marketing plan. A digital marketing strategy acts as a blueprint or framework for all online activities that you as a business expect to undertake in order to market your product or service. This can include elements like social media content, Google Ads, blog writing and of course, website development. So how do you create a digital marketing strategy that will be a sure-fire way to business success?
- What is your “Why”?
Why do you exist!? Establishing the purpose of your business helps to curate an effective brand story with authentic content and engaging messaging that loyal customers will come to love. An added bonus of establishing your “Why” and building it into your business ethos is the effect it has on your employees. A staggering 40% of millennials will stay with a company if they exhibit a strong sense of purpose in what they do.
2. Build your brand story
Over 70% of consumers want to be involved with a brand that tells a meaningful story. SEVENTY PERCENT! One can see then why developing your brand story is so important and should be taken seriously early on in your digital marketing journey. Developing a brand story should mention your “Why” and evoke inspiration within your customer base that they are a part of something special.
3. Who’s your target audience?
Developing an understanding of your target audience is another crucial aspect as this will help you round out your “Why” and brand story. Think about who will buy your product/service and create personas of this audience. Personas involve aspects such as their job, values, buying decisions as well as needs, wants and desires. Accurately creating a target audience persona will provide you with direction and get you ready for the next step.
4. Goals. Goals. Goals.
Goals can be big or small but a general rule for digital marketing strategy is to set goals that are achievable and measurable. The great thing about digital marketing is that everything can be measured and tracked with various tools like Google Analytics or SEMrush so set goals that are quantifiable and important towards the growth of your business. A great way to get you goals list started is to think S.M.A.R.T. Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant & Time-bound.
5. Journey Map
Journey mapping is brilliant way to visualize the processes that your potential customer is taking in order to land on your page or, ideally, adding items to your shopping cart! By understanding where a customer first encountered your organization, what keeps them engaged and what makes them keep coming back can be hugely beneficial for your strategy.
Understanding this journey can also prove valuable for various divisions of your business. Perhaps you will gain valuable insights into what marketing activities resonate best with your user? Or are there subtle design features that were more engaging which your graphic design team should know about?
6. Content development
Content should be all about quality, consistency and customization. When building a content strategy, make sure you take on board the previous five points of a digital marketing strategy as these will help you set your tone and deliver the appropriate information that your brand is trying to convey. Make sure to also pay close attention to your SEO practices but we’ll touch on this a little later in the blog.
Create a custom, user-driven website design
Once you have your digital marketing strategy in place, it’s time to focus on creating a custom user-driven website. A user-driven website ensures that your website is easily accessible and usable for your audience. Elements of a user-driven website include;
- Simple Navigation – Don’t make navigating your page difficult. Fluid, easy to scroll pages work best and keep users on page for longer.
- Language – Speak to your audience in a relatable and personable way without getting too fancy or complex. Keep sentences short and informative and avoid using uncommon or confusing words.
- Don’t Be Annoying – It’s all well and good having popups and banners spread across your webpage but there is a fine line between valuable and annoying so make sure you design accordingly.
- Stick to the Fundamentals – Keep the site design simple. Make sure basic functions like contact pages, enquiry forms, product pages and blogs are easily found and viewed.
- Mobile Usability – Over 50% of all internet searching is now conducted on a mobile device. Ensure that your website is mobile friendly and optimized.
Implementing these five aspects can go a long way in ensuring your website is user-driven and a pleasant experience for potential customers.
Pick up your SEO game
As mentioned earlier, paying close attention to your SEO is hugely valuable when undertaking your content writing. If SEO seems daunting, fear not! We have a few tips to get your started.
- Research your Keywords – There are various tools to help in your keyword research. Google for instance has a keyword planner or other websites like SEMrush and Ahrefs can help show you what the competition is doing as well as which keywords are performing best within your space.
- Write like you’re the reader – When undertaking your content and SEO, make sure you write in such a way that is offering value to the reader whilst also proving beneficial from an SEO perspective.
- Slow load times – Over 50% of mobile phone users leave a page that takes longer than 3 seconds to load. Make sure your site speed isn’t jeopardizing your websites success!
- On-page SEO – On-page SEO includes components like title tags, HTML tags and meta descriptions that all help Google to crawl your site more accurately as well as providing valuable information to potential website users. Make sure you implement these properly and design pages around these features.
Continually care for and optimise your website
Now that you have gone and put in all this effort to either improve or build a brand spanking new website your next step is just like any other asset that you have spent time and money on – CARE FOR IT!
Websites may look simple from a frontend perspective but behind the scenes it can get a little complicated where sometimes issues arise. Updates to website platforms too are necessary undertakings as these help improve the functionality and overall performance of the website.
With regular maintenance you can avoid issues that may deter customers or worse yet, destroy the relationship and loyalty you have built with existing users. Website maintenance also helps to make sure your content is up to date and performing inline with your digital marketing goals.
Whether you want to take your digital to the next level or are just starting out, we are here to help you grow. If you want to start smashing your digital goal, get in touch with us!