What is the Shelf Life of Your Website?

Has Your Website’s “Freshness Date” Expired?

Updating your website with fresh content is the best way to ensure that your company is being found on the web. Google or any other search engine ranks the most relevant and interesting topics at the top so that consumer searches consistently yield the best results.

However, for many small businesses, the usefulness of their website isn’t top-of-mind, or they’re concerned re-design just isn’t in the budget.

Have you considered a re-write?

Now, I know that most services and products aren’t very electrifying to write about, or need constant updating, and I’m not suggesting you come up with 100 ways to write about your great customer service.

Instead, include other engaging and informative content – community events, helpful tips, industry articles – and you’ll position your company as a trusted source that is concerned about helping its customers.  Isn’t that what your website is for anyway?

In freshening up your website, here are some points to consider:

Always Be Original! Copy and pasting content from another source or using “generic copy” that doesn’t contain unique keywords can hurt your chances of being found by a customer. Using duplicate material across your site can harm your site’s ranking, as well.

A good benchmark is to strive for somewhere in the 60% unique content range to stay in good graces with the search engines. Be unusual!  Use your copy to talk about what sets your company apart!

Update Often

Now is the time to rewrite your old content. Updated pages tell the search engine crawlers to “check on me often” to see if there is fresh content. Updated pages maintain a higher placement in search engine results.

While we’re talking about updates, if nothing else, make sure that your product information is current!  Don’t give the impression to members that you are out of touch, and lose an opportunity to turn a shopper into a customer.

Archive Old Content

Archiving, or removing old irrelevant copy helps to reduce your website’s “page totals”, and increases your ratio of fresh-to-stale content.  Keeping older, irrelevant pages can offset your chances of being recognized for your fresh, informative copy.

Fresh content will keep members and prospects coming back and will position your business as a trusted source of quality information. Staying relevant is much easier if your website has a CMS (Customer Management System) to make updating your site as easy as typing a Word document.

Lastly, be sure there is someone at your company in charge of updating.  Too many times updates are ignored because it's assumed someone else has done it.