Digital leader or laggard-online strategies for 2015

Online strategies

Online strategies

Is it surprising that Forrester Research lists online strategies at the top of their list of 2015 IT predictions? What’s surprising is that with all the research pointing to the importance of effective online properties, more companies haven’t embraced the opportunity. Even with the information and education available, there is still a distinct difference between companies that do it well and those that don’t. If you don’t experiment and integrate, you are destined to lose more ground in 2015. Every aspect of digitization is a source for competitive differentiation.

Have you successfully harnessed your online strategies and differentiated yourself from the competition?  If you graded your online marketing, where would you stand?

Does your navigation have a logical flow?

Users navigating to find useful information and search engines reward sites that are intuitive and make logical sense.

Are your navigation headings clear?

Clever headings may put a smile on your face but they confuse your audience.  Make sure they are logical and easy to understand.  Plus, targeted, descriptive headings benefit both your audience and search engine results.

Do you use relevant words and phrases to describe your capabilities?

Viable content containing unfamiliar terms confuse your audience.  Do you use acronyms or internal names in your content?  Employees may understand this terminology but not your audience. A print communications company referring to their services as “integrated communications” might infer they provide wireless communication services instead of print communication services.  Conducting keyword and customer research will help ensure that you present information in a way that connects with your users.

Does your site target the needs of your audience?

Does your content provide your audience with useful information?  Does it answer their questions or help them do their job better? Generic content or short, non descript web pages won’t generate new leads or encourage repeat visits. Even with the short attention spans so common today, web pages containing longer form copy perform better. How to information, case studies and customer testimonials are examples of the content that users find most helpful. Fine opportunities to add or expand these areas on your site.

Are images included on your web pages?

Images improve the overall user experience. In fact, articles with images get almost double the views and are nearly two-thirds more likely to contact that business.

Do you have a regular schedule for updating or adding content?

Adding content regularly encourages repeat visits and expands your audience. Just like organizing your day leads to a more productive outcome, a well thought out plan will ensure that content is developed and executed.

Is it easy for your audience to contact you if they need more information?

There’s nothing worse for a consumer than a company that’s impossible to contact. There’s nothing worse for you than a lost lead or frustrated customer made possible by your poor contact process.   Your phone number, email address and contact form should be visible and accessible.  Make it easy for mobile users by including your phone number and email in the copy, not in an image.  That way they can use one click to call or email your company.  And, when your audience does contact you, make sure you respond quickly and thoughtfully.

Are you utilizing analytics to continuously improve your site?

Assessing basic analytics information is a start. But the goals, conversions and experiments features help you understand user behavior and make site improvements. Your site becomes more effective through a regular analytics review.

Is your site mobile ready?

Responsive design provides an optimal website viewing experience across a wide range of devices.  Don’t think it’s important for you? Take a look at your analytics report and notice the percentage of people that already access your site in that manner.  And if you are still not convinced, read this.

If you answered yes to most of the questions, then you will spend 2015 further expanding the good work you have done.  If your site needs improvement, it’s not too late.  Adopting a plan for regular improvements will ensure inclusion on the leader list in 2016!

Need help with your online strategies?  Contact John Edmundson or InterEdge Marketing to learn more.

 

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