Using a Website Redesign Checklist

When it comes to redesigning your website, there are a lot of different elements you’ll need to address, which is why you should use a website redesign checklist. The following website redesign checklist will help you gather all of the data you need as well as address the most important aspects of your website’s design:

Analyze your current website

If you’ve committed to investing in a complete website redesign, then you probably know what you want to improve. However, you should use analytics to diagnose your site’s issues so that you know exactly what’s wrong. For example, if you’re visitor conversion rate is lower than you would like, look at data such as bounce rates, page load times, CTA click-throughs and shopping car abandonment rates to pinpoint where your issues lie. Other metrics you’ll want to pay attention to include:

  • SEO rankings for important keywords
  • Total number of sales generated
  • Number of visitors
  • Number of unique visitors
  • Domain authority
  • Number of new lead form submissions.

Establish your goals

If you don’t know what you want your website to accomplish, then you won’t know what direction to take your website redesign in. Without goals, you won’t know what to focus on, nor will you know whether your website redesign is successful once it’s up and running. Make sure that when you set your goals, you can tie them to measurable results. For example, if increasing your brand authority is your main goal, then track metrics such as:

  • The number of unique visitors,
  • Time spent on page
  • Social signals (shares, likes and comments)

Determine what works

Just because your current website might have a few issues doesn’t mean that there aren’t elements that work really well. For example, maybe you’re redesigning your site because you want to update its look; however, your content is actually very effective at drawing in visitors and capturing leads. More specifically, you’ll want to make sure that high ranking pages are kept in place. When auditing your site, take note of what you think is successful as well as what needs work.

Analyze your competitors

In addition to auditing your own website, you should audit the sites of your main competitors. Take note of everything you like and don’t like about their site. Your aim shouldn’t be to just copy what they do but to get an idea of what they are doing so that you can create a superior website experience.

Identify your UVP

Your unique value proposition (UVP) indicates exactly what your business does and what makes your services or products unique. A UVP helps you stand out from the competition. You need to know what your UVP is because it will inform all of the content that you create for your website.

Keep buyer personas in mind

Your website should appeal to your target audience. Your visitors need to be able to connect to your brand’s messaging, after all. To make sure that this happens, all of your content should cater to your buyer persona. A buyer persona is a fictional representation of your ideal customer created using the available data you have from current and past customers, such as:

  • Demographics
  • Past purchases
  • Online behavior
  • Motivations
  • Needs
  • Wants
  • Concerns
  • Personal histories
  • Income

Here are the reasons why buyer personas are so important to a business

Map your buyer’s journey

Every visitor that comes to your website is going to be at one of three stages of the buyer’s journey. The first stage is the awareness stage, in which the buyer is seeking information that helps to define their problems or needs. The second stage is the consideration stage in which the buyer defines their problem and is searching for solutions. The final stage is the decision stage, in which the buyer chooses a solution. Your website needs to cater to visitors at every stage of the buyer’s journey in order to attract their attention, keep their attention and, finally, to convert them.

Set benchmark metrics

The goals you set should be general yet measurable. For example, the goal to increase brand authority is a long-term goal that doesn’t end. Because of this, you should set benchmarks so that you can judge your site’s performance. For example, social signals are a good metric for measuring brand authority. You could set benchmarks for how many shares you want to average per blog post by a certain date. If your metrics meet this benchmark by this date, then you know that your redesign is working and you can set the goal posts even further. If you don’t meet this benchmark, then you may need to make more adjustments.

Optimize your site for SEO

Implementing a strong search engine optimization (SEO) strategy is vital to consistently attract new visitors. Google takes into account a variety of factors, including keywords, link juice and social signals. You’ll need to do keyword research to identify unique keywords relevant to each page. These keywords should be used naturally in your titles, headers, body content, anchor text, alt image tags, HTML tags, meta tags and title tags. External links are earned by promoting and linking to your website’s content via social media, submitting your website information to local directories and by writing guest blogs. Social signals are earned by getting visitors to engage with your content, such as by liking, sharing or commenting on it.

Optimize your site for mobile use 

Many people use their smartphones and tablets to browse the Internet. This means that your website will need to load and display properly no matter how small the screen size is. The easiest way to ensure that your site is mobile-friendly is by using a responsive design. You can check to see if your current site is mobile-friendly by using Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test. Just type in the address for each webpage and it will determine how mobile-friendly it is.

Find opportunities for conversion

Calls-to-action should be used on every page to encourage visitors to convert. Without calls-to-action, visitors won’t know what you want them to do. Not only should you use relevant CTAs on every page, you need to offer something of value to visitors in return for opting-in. Depending on your what your business offers, this could include downloadable eBooks and white papers, email newsletter subscriptions, product discounts, free trials, free consultations and more. Unique landing pages should be crafted for every call-to-action that focus on the visitor’s needs, your UVP and how what you’re offering can benefit them.

Implement a content strategy

Whatever your goals are for your website, their success will depend on your content strategy. You need to provide high-quality content that is relevant to your buyer persona’s needs and concerns and that is informative, helpful and unique. The best way to do this is through a website blog. Additionally, you’ll need to regularly publish new content to keep your audience engaged and to make sure that they return to your site. While writing good content is important, you’ll need to market it as well. An important part of your content strategy is establishing exactly when you publish your content (it should always be on the same day at the same time) and where and how you promote your new content.

Continually improve

Don’t assume that once you’re done with your website redesign that you’re finished. A good website design is one that is always being improved. You should track your metrics and make adjustments to your design whenever needed. If you meet your goals, you should establish new ones. Move your goal posts further so that your website can continue to grow and improve. Additionally, you should always be uploading new content to keep your website fresh, thereby maintaining or improving your search engine rankings.

Want more resources on how to redesign your website? Click here!

  25 Website Must Haves For Driving Traffic, Leads & Sales

Are Keywords Still Required To Increase SEO Rankings?

Although the use of keywords no longer has the power to increase SEO rankings the way they once did, they continue to play an important part in online marketing strategies.

SEO has evolved greatly over the years, to the point where it’s almost unrecognizable to what it was just a decade ago. Google has continuously updated its algorithm to make its search results more accurate and relevant, and they’ve cracked down on the abuse of keywords to artificially boost web rankings. These days, Google uses over 200 factors to determine search rankings; however, keywords still play a vital part. The following are three ways that keywords are still important to your SEO rankings:

Identify Relevancy

The use of high-quality keywords can help Google to identify what your content is about so that they can their SERP (search engine results page) more accurate. It’s important to use good keywords, such as long-tail keywords that are backed up by semantic keywords. This helps prevent Google from mistaking your use of keywords for similar keywords in subjects that are not the same.

For example, if you write a blog post about the best apples (as in the fruit) and your keyword is “how to choose the best apple,” Google might mistake this for the company Apple. Visitors who come to your site looking for information on new Apple computers are going to be annoyed and will leave immediately, thereby increasing your bounce rate, which will affect your rankings. The stronger your keywords are in regards to relevancy, the more accurately Google will rank your content.

Match User Intent

Knowing what your target audience is searching for will be very beneficial, not only in building your own keyword list to match their search queries, but to use those keywords in content created to match the user intent. Basically, the use of keywords and content created to match the user intent of the keywords your audience is using will put you in a greater position to fulfill their needs at whatever stage of the buying journey they are at. If they click on your page and it’s exactly what they’re looking for, they’re more likely to stay on your site for a longer period of time and to engage with your content, resulting in higher rankings.

Learn how to drive website conversions during each stage of the buyer’s journey! 

Attract Higher Quality Leads

Overly broad keywords will bring in traffic, but it won’t necessarily be your target audience. Bringing in empty traffic doesn’t do anything for your site if your visitors don’t have interest in your brand. By using stronger keywords that are more specific, you’re more likely to attract visitors that match your buyer persona.

While you might think that doing this could limit your web traffic, this may not be true. More specific keywords are likely going to have less competition than broader keywords, which means you’ll have a much better chance at ranking higher. For example, you’re not going to rank very high for “apple” for obvious reasons, but you’re more likely to increase SEO rankings with a more specific keyword, such as “best tasting apples in Sacramento.”

Keywords aren’t the only thing that you should be focusing on as you attempt to increase SEO rankings, but they still play a very important part in your SEO strategy. In fact, although they may not be as defining a factor in your rankings as they once were, you could argue that they play an even more important part in your inbound marketing campaign as a whole. For more professional advice on how to create an effective SEO campaign, contact us at Stevens & Tate today.

17 SEO MYTHS YOU SHOULD LEAVE BEHIND

artificial intelligence

What AI means To B2B Marketing Strategies

Artificial intelligence is no longer just a concept explored through pop culture; it’s a very real thing that has become increasingly prevalent throughout society, even in the creation of B2B marketing strategies. In fact, the use of AI is practically commonplace now. For example, the use of AI is what allows Amazon to recommend personalized products based on your buying and browsing habits. It also allows your GPS to provide you with the best possible route. For business owners and marketers, AI has also become essential to improving B2B marketing strategies.

The Benefits of AI in B2B Marketing Strategies

The following are just a few ways that the use of AI can help to improve B2B marketing strategies:

Improve the customer experience via personalization

Businesses no longer directly interact with brands when they are doing product or service research. This means it can be difficult to mine information from potential clients or business partners. The use of AI technology can help you collect data that provides insight into the behavioral patterns of both existing and potential clients or partners. This means that your marketing efforts no longer have to be limited to certain sectors, you’ll be able to target specific businesses with messages designed to provide solutions to their specific needs, thereby improving the customer experience as well.

Improve your marketing strategy

The use of behavioral analysis and machine learning can help you to better understand what the pain points of your target audience is. Behavioral analyses also allows you to craft a more effective marketing strategy to reach and convert that audience.

Find out how to build your brand story with your B2B marketing strategy.

Save money by saving time

The use of AI technology means that you don’t have to spend hours analyzing data. This type of data can be collected and analyzed by AI programs for you. It will allow you to dedicate more time to other aspects of your business.

Improve results with lead scoring

Trying to chase down every lead is typically a waste of time since not all leads are equal. The use of AI technology can allow you to score your leads using all of the behavioral data that you’ve collected. This, in turn, allows you to pinpoint businesses that are much more likely to convert. It allows for a better use of your resources since you can identify the best prospects and prioritize your most promising accounts.

The use of artificial intelligence will help to improve your B2B marketing strategies in any number of ways, whether it’s by helping you to collect and organize more valuable data that can be used to more effectively target qualified leads using personalization, or simply being able to make better use of your resources. Be sure to visit us at Stevens & Tate to take advantage of our free downloadable marketing tools, which can be leveraged to help improve your B2B marketing efforts.

For more resources on Attraction Marketing, click here.

lead generation tips

Website Redesign Tips

Once you’ve decided to redesign your website so that your business can remain competitive, you’ll want professional website redesign tips to help ensure that your new website design will be effective. Without one, your site is likely going to continue having some of the same problems it currently has. Redesigning your website without a plan is basically like doing temporary repairs and hoping that they will hold up.

Questions to ask when planning your website redesign

If you’re looking to figure out what you need to change, you’ll want to start by asking yourself key questions about your current website design. The following questions will help you understand where your current website’s issues lie and how your website can be improved.

What do you think needs work on your website?

If you’ve identified the need for a website redesign, then you should have some idea of what areas of your current website need work. However, you should still go through your entire site to see if you can pick up on anything that you think needs to be addressed. Pay attention to:

  • How long pages take to load
  • How easy it is to navigate
  • Whether your links are working
  • If visitors are engaging with your content
  • Whether your content is outdated
  • What kind of impression you have of the site’s look

What do visitors think about your website?

Your visitors often have a better perspective on how functional your site is to use than you do. In fact, some of the best website redesign tips you can get are from your visitors. Pay attention to some of the common questions that your visitors are asking concerning your website. You can also look at what your visitors are searching for most in your search bar. For example, if they are searching for your contact information, then your contact page may not be as easy to find as it should be.

Why Your Website Redesign Would Benefit From An Inbound Marketing Strategy

What is your website’s main goal?

You should have one main goal, whether it’s generating sales, increasing brand authority, converting leads or spreading brand awareness. This goal will help guide you when it comes to making your website design choices and will give you something to benchmark your site’s results against.

What are your competitors’ websites like?

One way to get an idea of what works and what doesn’t is by taking a look at the competition. Spend some time going through one of your competitor’s websites. It’s often easier to judge another website objectively than it is to do so your own. You’re likely to notice that your more successful competitors have the more effective website designs. Take note of some of the things you like about their site as well, such as the layout, features or some of the pages they have that you might not.

How often do you update your website?

You should be updating your website regularly, even if it’s just to post weekly blog content. If you’re not, it could be because your current website is just too difficult to update. Fortunately, there are content management systems (CMS) available that makes it easy for anyone to update a website, whether they are technically proficient or not.

Want more resources on how to redesign your website? Click here!

  25 Website Must Haves For Driving Traffic, Leads & Sales

video storytelling

Your Company’s Core Values Play a Role in Developing Your Brand Story

When vetting brands, consumers often look far deeper than the simple surface messages that portray a company. In today’s age, more than ever, customers are choosing brands based on their set of core values–a major player in a brand story–in an effort to better understand the people behind the logo.

Your brand story and your company’s core values dictate exactly who you are and can give you a significant competitive advantage by outlining the age old question, “Who are we, what do we do?” In other words, you put your “why’s” and “how’s” on your proverbial sleeve. This level of transparency makes brands more human, more approachable, and more connected with their target market.

Core Values in a Nut Shell

In short, your core values tell your target buyers why you do what you do and must be at the epicenter of your brand story as well as the focus of your day-to-day business functions. Another way of looking at core values is character: who you are, how you go about your business, and the name you carry into your daily tasks, but these values must come from the heart and should stand out in the marketplace.

These core values are what connects your brand to your customers on a “human” level. Evaluating your core values can be a little more in depth as it truly resonates through the drive within your business. That evaluation begins by asking why your business exists, what your purpose is, and what obstacles you face to deliver on that purpose. All of these “outer layer” questions should point back to your “why” and should be able to justify what lies at the center.

Be a Storybrander, Not a Storyteller

The most iconic and memorable brands imbed their beliefs, core values, and emotions into your psyche. Storybranding is how memorable brands generate an enduring, lifelong value or belief system that stays with their customers and engages their buyer personas. In other words, companies are characterized by their ideals and personified through them. Storybranding is an attraction marketing tactic that marries your company, its belief system, and the beliefs of your customers.

There are some important differences between storybranding and storytelling, though. Storytelling allows your brand to make a connection with your customers through current events or marketing. This allows consumers to better identify with what’s happening in your business. Storybranding, however, seeks to put your brand’s beliefs and deeper meaning before your customers in order to evoke stronger emotions therefore generating stronger bonds.

How do you build a brand story? Learn the process here.

Be Your Story’s Hero

super hero

The key to your brand story is to highlight the hero within it. Of course, with every hero in every story, there is something relatable, pure, and honest about that character. In the case of storybranding, that hero is you–is there a more perfect script for your brand?

With our protagonist identified, it’s super important to tell those why’s and how’s of the story. This is where your core values come in.

Speak to those core values and instill them in your customer’s mind. Make sure they know the heart of their hero and can relate to exactly what your brand stands for. Once you’ve made that emotional attachment, begin to outline the how’s of your brand story by outlining the competitive advantages you have over others in the market. This is what truly seals the deal, but without a reason, your brand simply can’t speak as loudly as it could. In other words, keep your core values close to home.

Furthering Your Brand Story

Your brand story is completely unique. No one else can say it the way you do and no one else can replicate the pillars you stand on as a company. If you need a little help, consider a free marketing consultation where a marketing professional can help you develop and say your brand story the way no one else can!

Click here to learn all there is to know about telling your brand’s story.

Learn The StoryBranding Process