Updating your website can be a time-consuming task, right? It’s one of those things that people sometimes overlook just because they’re naturally more focused on their content and such. Still, your site plays a crucial part in your online presence as a brand, so you would want to make sure to tweak it and keep it up to date constantly.
In order to help you with this process, we have decided to compile together a shortlist of aspects and components that you need to keep an eye on in your website in order to stay on top of your game and shine amongst the millions of other websites out there.
Without further ado, here’s how to update a website.
How to update a website: Start with analysis
Before learning how to update a website, you first need to analyse the state of your site from the front end (what your website’s visitors see) as well as your analytics. This will help you better understand your audience’s behaviour and how you can change your website in accordance with their needs.
Of course, in order to get the most accurate data out of your website’s visitors, you need to have the latest tracking and analytics tools integrated well into your website (such as Google Analytics 4). Such data includes which pages are visited the most, how much time visitors spend on a page on average, and how many visitors left your website without bothering to check anything (bounce rate).
Using this data, you can better understand the behaviour of your customers. Upon further analysis, you can build an idea about why they act the way they do. For example, if many people stick around at a certain page but leave the others rather quickly, consider what’s different between the pages and try to fix the ones that aren’t performing well. The reasons behind this can include design, load time, etc.
Keep a fresh design
Numerous businesses fall into the grave mistake of focusing solely on content and digital marketing (PPC, SEO) without paying much attention to their websites’ overall design and navigation.
When it comes to design and navigation, the first thing that you need to make sure of is having easy navigation. In other words, people should easily be able to hop from one page to another without much issue. As for design, though, make sure to not use dull or overly bright colours, for instance.
You can have the best writers on the block, putting together some of the richest, highest-quality content out there, but if it’s not designed well, no one will read it. And if there is one thing that is wholeheartedly true about web design, then it’s the fact that first impressions are key. Even if you’re lacking navigation-wise, if visitors of your website find your visual design appealing, they’re more likely to stick around.
So, you need to check whether your website adheres to the core principles of design or not. Moreover, make sure to include unique visual elements that will not only create a memorable design but also set you apart from the competition. Adding creatives such as images, sounds, videos, and animations, is always welcome.
According to Statista, mobile devices (excluding tablets) generated around 55% of global website traffic in the first quarter of 2021. What this means is that if your website is not mobile-friendly. If you’re not, you might as well be missing more than half of your potential visitors.
Keeping up with current web design trends can be tiring and time-consuming. However, it’s an aspect well worth every minute you spend on it. We’re not saying that you should act as a top-tier professional website designer. However, it would help if you also kept an eye on the latest trends that people seem to appreciate.
The easiest way of doing this is checking the websites of your competitors to get inspired by what they seem to be doing right. Additionally, consider creating an account in design-oriented social networks in case you haven’t already. We recommend Behance and Dribble, both of which include hundreds of posts about illustration, animation, user interface, and more. They will help you stay up to date with the latest trends in graphic design.
How to update a website: Keep your content fresh
Keeping your content up to date can help your business in a multitude of ways.
Better content equals more traffic
Keeping your content up to date will help to create a bond of trust between you and your visitors (customers). The latter probably rely on your website for helpful information about your products and services as well as the market that you operate within.
Having good, frequently updated content also helps you to build domain authority. If you’re not familiar with DA, it refers to how much of an authority a site has on a particular subject. For example, a site like github.com has one of the highest domain authorities out there simply because it contains well researched, editor-reviewed content with little to no ads.
Search engines such as Google closely follow the domain authority of websites simply because it helps them provide better search results for any sort of inquiry that users might have.
The Internet is filled with business/brand websites that haven’t been updated for years. People who stumble upon these websites usually end up wondering whether they’re still in business or not. So, to put it shortly, having outdated content on your site will significantly hurt your online credibility. That, in turn, leads to less and less traffic over time.
Repurpose your older content
Let’s say that you run a clothing business, and your business includes some old blog posts about bucket hats that you originally created with the sole purpose of pushing hat sales. Now, bucket hats are becoming trendy once again, thanks to hip-hop and R&B artists. You could re-use that old content of yours and add a modern touch to it. Perhaps a video, an infographic, or a simple image.
Get rid of outdated posts
When your website grows, some of your posts will inevitably become old. Yes, certain posts are indeed eternal, but some (if not many) aren’t. One way of handling these posts is deleting them altogether, which helps to clean your website a bit.
How to update a website: Keywords
Another critical aspect of the content of your website is the keywords contained within it. Having pages on your website that tackle a specific topic is only effective if you include the right keywords. For example, if you have a business that is based on car repairs, then you should probably have a page on your website dedicated to car repairs.
Further, keeping your keywords as fresh as possible is crucial because it lets search engines recognise your new ventures. Those may include moving business to a new location, introducing a new product or service, and more. If you don’t do that, the only traffic that you will get is people looking for you through your old address or product line.
Give the “other” pages some love
Your focus shouldn’t only be on your main pages and blog posts. You should also focus on your “other” pages. For starters, make sure to always update your Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) page. With new products and services and ever-changing consumer demand come new questions. Make sure to include them. Additionally, always fine-tune your “contact” and “about” pages. Yes, we do realise that content in these pages doesn’t need to be updated frequently, but that doesn’t mean that you should completely disregard them.
Upgrade your website’s functionality
We have already touched on the importance of having a mobile-friendly website. However, that isn’t the only functionality that you need to focus on when taking care of your website. There are numerous other SEO practices that you need to keep an eye on. Fortunately for you, there are tools out there that can help you find important new updates, our favourite being schema.org.
There is also Yoast SEO, an extremely popular SEO-oriented plugin for WordPress-based websites. It helps to provide site owners with the latest and greatest SEO-wise.
Another important aspect of your website that you should keep an eye on is speed. Your website should be quick to load, quicker than most of the competition, in fact. Tools such as Google’s Test My Site and Page Speed Insights will give you an idea of your website’s speed. They even suggest edits that you can make to improve it.
How to update a website: Don’t forget about SEO
Of course, in your ever-going journey of keeping your website up to date, you need to focus on ensuring that your target audience finds you easily on search engines like Google. We’re sure that you have already invested in the world of SEO as a site owner or administrator, but it doesn’t stop there. You should always review the state of your SEO after adding new or removing elements from your website.
An excellent place to start when it comes to SEO is something we have mentioned already, and that is keywords. With new designs comes new content, and with new content come new keywords, which you should thoroughly research.
We’re here to help
It’s not always easy to keep everything under control and updated on your website. If you feel like you can’t do it yourself, drop us a message. Our experts will chime in to help.