As spring gets into full swing, just like your garden, your online content is calling out for a little TLC.
Business owners, I know it’s a bore. You paid good money and parted with hours of your time to put that website together…the last thing you want to do is revisit it six months down the line.
But you know, you really should.
Do you ever have a memory that pops up on Facebook? One of those cringeworthy posts that no longer reflects who you are or the person you’ve grown into? If, like me, you quickly hit the ‘delete permanently’ button, it is worth considering that this spring clean could have benefits elsewhere in your online world.
Content, even so-called static content, has an expiration date. When was the last time you really took an in-depth look at your webpage? And, by that, I don’t just mean your landing page.
The pictures may still look good, but what about the message? Does your core message still resonate with the person or company you are today? If your business is evolving, your content needs to keep pace with the changes.
The good news? There’s no need to throw the baby out with the bath water. A few precision tweaks will help keep your copy fresh, relevant and memorable.
The aim of this spring clean? A crisp, clean website where your reader won’t trip over your clunky words and sentences whilst searching for your message.
Every word on your website should serve a purpose. Weed out irrelevant, out of date content (check your ‘meet the team’ page and remove ex-staff who have long since left yet linger on your site – delete reference to services you may no longer offer) and prune back clever-clogs sentences that only serve as window dressing to the main event.
Once you’ve rooted out the bad content, you’ll have a much clearer picture of your content. It’s now time to lay the groundwork for your fresh new copy.
Begin with the essentials. Is your contact information still up to date? Do you have fresh colleagues you need to add to your introductions page? Pay particular attention to your landing page and both your core message and call to action.
Does the tone of voice match where you are as a business right now? Is the message still the same, or have your goals shifted at all?
Check your Google Analytics to discover which of your blog posts and pages are receiving the most hits. Put in some time on keyword research and see how your own website aligns in relation to the customer base you are looking to attract. Are there new phrases you could be including in your copy?
Come up with a list of blog topics you’d like to cover over the remaining year. If you’ve already planned these out, review them. Things change all the time – is your content plan schedule still relevant?
Compelling copy should resonate with your audience and serve a purpose. What is the goal for your website? To sell your product or services? To provide information and advice? Are your content and goal aligned?
Just like beautiful flowerbeds are a balance of colour and form, your writing needs to balance function, emotion and brevity. Catchy headlines and short, snappy paragraphs written in your brand voice.
Take the time to edit and review your content before you publish. Proofread, proofread and proofread once more! It’s tempting to just ‘get it out there’, but professionalism demands your copy be error free.
One last spring clean tip: check your testimonials. Are they looking a little dated? Check back through emails and messages for positive client feedback and be sure to add it to your testimonial page. Update your portfolio with current exemplar work that might impress clients. Don’t be afraid to contact clients directly to ask them to share some kind words.
And remember, regular reviews of your web copy can be cost-effective. By making small tweaks over the year, you’re saving yourself a costly rewrite every couple of years!