Ah, there are so many platforms demanding your attention as a small business owner these days. Whether it’s being told to post on Twitter ten times a day to make sure you get that pesky newsletter out once a week. That’s on top of all the other stuff you need to do to run your business.
It’s enough to make your head spin and you can see the task of updating your website sinking further down the to-do list. However, could neglecting your website be hurting your website?
What hurts a business website?
How frustrating is it though when you come across a business or brand you love, visit their website and leave feeling wary because of the state of their main online platform?
One of the most frustrating of websites is coming across one that has out of date information, old pricing and a business blog that hasn’t been added to in over 6 months or more.
Out of date content, old pricing and services make you look unprofessional and will leave people wondering if you’re still in business.
Think of your website as your digital shop front window – you want your best wares on show to reflect and show you are a professional outfit.
There’s nothing more frustrating than seeing a website where the content is inconsistent and doesn’t align with the brand or core message of a business.
This could be ill-formatted copy, long-winded copy that makes no sense or is delivered in a way that is more about the business rather than solving the tasks of the potential visitor.
Broken navigation and links
Making it difficult for visitors to find what they are looking for is a sure way to reduce the chances of earning custom and business.
Whether it’s broken links that send you to 404 Not Found pages to menu links that link to pages that no longer exist, trust in your business will be diminished and that potential client will go looking elsewhere.
Getting to the root of the problem
While it’s understandable that you can’t always give your website the attention it needs, neglecting to maintain your website will ultimately hurt your business, especially if you market yourself predominantly online.
While it’s understandable to concentrate your digital marketing efforts where you have the most engagement, it’s incredibly important to have a website that is current.
A website is never a done and finished thing and it’s a business task that is as important to keep on top of as your books or other marketing efforts.
If you’re struggling to keep on top of your website, the next thing you need to do is identify and figure out your main stumbling blocks.
Along with running your business, working with clients or fulfilling customer orders, marketing, keeping on top of the books, running your own business means a never-ending to-do list.
Ask yourself, do you genuinely not have the time to update your website? Or is it a task that you are able to book into your diary on a regular basis? You can update your website on a weekly, monthly, or quarterly basis. If you don’t have the time – then perhaps it’s time to outsource to a VA or a content professional, such as The Content Alchemist.
Ah, but that’s an expense I can’t afford I hear you say. If this is the case, it may help to think of it in terms of sales. How many products or how many clients could you build or see in the time it would take for you to update your website? The time you spend on the actual bits of the business you love could pay for someone to take the task off your hand, giving you peace of mind that the job is done.
Skills and Confidence
Perhaps you’re not feeling as confident as you like to or the website system feels like rooting around an alien spaceship. Either way, it takes an assured business owner to admit they need help.
Here you need to decide if your lack of skills in this area is something that is not your forte or a set of skills you are willing to acquire.
In the case of the former, and if budget permits, you could look at outsourcing the task. If you’re in the latter camp, then it’s time to look around at training opportunities – either through local business groups or online, depending on how you prefer to learn.
Your website needs an audit
The final issue may be that you are well and truly unhappy with your website. You know it’s out of date, you know it needs an overhaul, but you’ve become overwhelmed by the amount of work it looks like it will take.
At this point, you need to bring some order and structure to the process of sorting your website and this can be achieved by conducting a website audit.
A website audit takes an overview of your website. Highlights the issues and shows you the ways to improve your website so that it is in alignment with where you are in your business now and in the months to come.
Your next step
Acknowledging you have a problem is the first step, getting to the root of the issue the second, the third is to take action. Tell us below or on Facebook what’s the main thing holding you back from updating your website.
Before you go…
The Content Alchemist is offering a FREE 30-minute website audit to small businesses. Sign-up here to start yours.
If you’d prefer to do your own audit – download the Website Audit Checklist.