As we approach the end of another year and begin planning for 2015, it’s important to take a moment to reflect. What were your achievements this year? Did you reach your goals? What are your aspirations for next year? When it comes to setting strategic goals for your business, Sage Island can help identify and prioritize major areas for improvement. To help kick off your 2015 plan, our marketing experts have rounded up some New Year’s resolutions you might want to consider for your business.
Build a New Website
Today’s consumers expect nothing less than easy-to-navigate, clean and responsive websites. You only have 10 seconds to make an impression and gain the trust of your viewers. Although a website that hasn’t been refreshed for a few years may not yet be considered outdated, it’s important to pay attention to new programs and tools. Neglecting these updates could prevent your website from performing at its best, enabling competitors to steal opportunities. Slow loading pages, broken links and outdated graphics can make for a poor reputation. When bad user experiences occur, 88 percent of viewers are less likely to return. Embrace change and keep your website performing strong across all digital platforms.
Update a Current Website
Oftentimes, an existing website simply needs a tune up to increase performance. The content and foundation may be solid, but a few small changes can freshen up the entire user experience. Updating a current website can include adding new graphics, implementing a change in functionality or even tweaking the business logo. When it comes to a website’s appearance, 94 percent of people base their trust on design. Enhancing a website doesn’t necessarily warrant a complete makeover, especially if the budget isn’t there. Simple adjustments such as refreshing content to make it easier to read, using real photos instead of stock images and adding links to social media can make a huge difference. There are countless ways to improve a website, but the first step is to analyze it from the perspective of its users and discover what’s lacking.
Increase Online Visibility
Optimizing your website with quality content enhances the user experience and improves search engine rankings. Building a strong, reliable reputation and providing viewers with the information they’re searching for are critical factors in SEO success. When relevant meta data is missing and content isn’t regularly updated or added, a website can appear old and inactive. If a site lies dormant, search rank decreases. When searching online, 75 percent of users never look past the first page of search results. Organic search is the leading force of traffic to websites, beating out social media by 300 percent. If companies fail to optimize their websites (for both users and search engine crawlers), potential traffic and conversions are lost.
Build a Social Community
Social media enables you to effectively reach your target audience, build brand awareness and develop user-generated content. It’s also great for SEO. When it comes to social engagement, 72 percent of all Internet users are active on some type of social media. Spreading the word about a company or product has never been easier. Being active on social media paves the way for customers to regularly (and hopefully positively!) talk about a business and its services. That doesn’t mean a business needs to sign up for every social network. Depending on the company’s goals and services offered, some companies flourish using just a single platform. The number of businesses on social media continues to increase everyday – it’s time to jump on board and reach targeted customers on a more personal level.
Give Your Website a Secure Hosting Home
Having the peace of mind of knowing your website data and email accounts are safe is priceless. Finding the right hosting home ensures a reliable and credible website for searchers. No matter the type of hosting company a business decides to work with (online or with an in-house business), it’s important to research its services and reputation. Hosting providers should always be available in the case that incorrect modifications to the server or configuration problems arise. Although the type of hosting provider can be argued for both sides, working with an actual person helps ensure issues are resolved quickly and miscommunication is prevented.
A new year should start with a new marketing plan. Now is the time for your business to look back on your fiscal year and decide what changes are in store for 2015. As a full-service marketing agency, we can review your previous efforts and help refine your overall strategy. Contact us today to make the most of 2015!
Mike Duncan co-founded Sage Island in 1997, and since then has evolved the agency’s scope to include marketing strategy, creative design, technical development and a wide range of digital marketing services. With an integrated approach that leverages the power and measurability of the internet, the savvy Sage Island team develops strategies, builds brands, writes killer copy and delivers to clients all over the world. And they have an awesome time doing it. Sage’s collaborative working environment keeps creativity and innovation at the heart of the concept. With a 17-year history in Wilmington and beyond, Sage Island shows no signs of slowing down. To learn how Sage Island can grow your business, check us out at www.sageisland.com. To stay updated on the latest in digital marketing, follow Sage Island on Facebook at www.facebook.com/SageIsland, and on Twitter at twitter.com/SageIsland.
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