After a digital audit, you’ve got to start putting your recommendations and observations into action – and usually that means doing a website refresh. Communications and marketing should always be at the table when optimizing your organization’s website – it’s not all about the IT team.
Want to upgrade your site and your communications strategy in one go? Here’s how to do it:
Are you addressing your audience’s needs?
We’re all about creating content that fits your audience. What do they want? What are they interested in? What do they need to know?
Basing your communications strategy around your target audience is one thing, but actually coming up with content they’ll consume is another. Why do a website refresh if your audience doesn’t care about your content? Make the refresh worthwhile by doing some content mapping first.
In a nutshell, content maps allow you to examine your target audience personas through the lens of each “lifecycle stage” (a.k.a. how close they are to converting). This allows you to make content tailored to every single category of your target audience. But before you start, there are two things you need to do first:
- Create target audience personas so you can really understand the people you’re trying to communicate with.
- Clarify your conversion goals – what actions do you want your audience to take?
Now you’re ready to start content mapping. Sound like a lot of work? Here’s a free template.
Write for your audience – and for Google
One of the trickiest parts of website communications is writing copy in a way that pleases both humans and robots (a.k.a. Google). Providing a great user experience for your audience is so important, but keeping SEO in mind is just as crucial. After all, your audience will have a tough time even finding your site if your SEO strategy is weak.
First thing’s first: do keyword research. Which relevant keywords do you want your site to rank for? Where are the opportunities to beat your competition? SEMrush’s Keyword Magic Tool is a great, easy-to-use resource that will help your website rise to the top of Google’s search results page.
Once you’ve narrowed down your keywords, improve your SEO copywriting by:
- Writing easy-to-read copy – big, long paragraphs aren’t ideal.
- Breaking up big chunks of text with bullet points, headings and images.
- Focusing on structure. Logical, structured writing helps audiences understand your content, which is a big plus in Google’s books.
- Installing the Yoast SEO plugin. It provides tips on making your webpages as SEO-friendly as possible.
Make publishing a breeze
As the centre of your digital communications strategy, your website should be built for frequent publishing. After all, you want to get your message across as easily as possible, right?
That means ensuring the backend of your site is straightforward and easy to navigate – especially on your blog, which will likely see the highest volume of posts published.
Before you start building anything, work with your IT and design team to map out the types of content you’ll be developing, as well as your process for publishing website updates. By working together, you can create a publishing environment that is flexible and fit for purpose. A well-designed website will help you avoid stressful publishing issues and save tons of time in the long run.
While you’re at it, try using an auto posting tool such as dlvr.it. These tools will automatically share new posts on your social media channels, making it totally painless for you to get the word out to your social media followers.
Doing a website refresh is a lot of work, but a good site can make all the difference for your organization. If you need help with optimizing your website, give us a shout!