Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Your website serves as the first impression of your business online. Potential clients use it to compare your firm to your competitors’ firms. Therefore, it’s a best practice to review your website for errors, inconsistencies, and other required changes each year. Below are a few common places to start shaping up your website.
- Check for Broken Links on Your Website
Broken links can occur on any website page. You’ll know a link is broken when you click on it and an “error” page shows up instead of the page you originally linked to. This happens because the page you linked to was either moved or has been deleted. A link can also be broken because it was originally mistyped. Broken links are annoying to your site’s visitors and weaken your website credibility!
How do you solve this problem? Well, you can click on every link on your site (which is tedious and you’ll probably miss a few) or you can run a link checker app that scans your site and gives you a report of all your broken links.
If you have NEVER checked your website’s links, I highly recommend that you run the link checker on your home page first. Why? It will check both the links within the page and the navigation links that appear at the top of every page. Once you fix the home page links, problematic navigation links won’t continue to show up in the link checker report when you check the other pages.
If you have NEVER checked the links on your blog, and you have linked to outside websites, get ready to fix many dead links. I recommend that you use an app that can specifically run your blog for broken links, page by page. A few we’ve listed below will do that, too.
If you have NEVER checked your links before, consider hiring a Virtual Assistant (VA) to run the link checker and do the research to update them, too. The VA should then be able to give you a much shorter list of links the VA wasn’t able to fix. As the writer of the articles and/or owner of the website, you should be able to give your VA the right links and they can fix the rest.
Maria’s Recommended Resources.
Here are some free ways to check your links:
- Change the Date in Your Website’s Footer
Nothing says “old” or “may contain lots of outdated information” than a website with an outdated copyright date. Change yours to the current year. Let this be the last year it needs to be updated! How?
- Survey Your Website Images
Make sure that the images on your site still target your ideal clients. Check images for outdated clothing, technology in the background, eyeglasses, hairstyles, etc.
- Verify Your Services
Are the services listed on your site current? Have you added new services that don’t appear? Making sure your list of services is current and accurate just makes good business sense!
- Check Your Photo
I will never forget the day I met “Iris.” My jaw dropped. Why? The photo she had on her website was 30 years old. Nothing reeks of distrust more than a photo that is more than 10 years old.
- Check Your Team Page
Check your About Us or Team page for old photos, employees you no longer have, and other changes. Update the page with new employee photos and bios. Add this step to your hiring process and exit checklists when employees come and go.
- Check Your Client Page
I call mine the Client Café. I’ve seen it called “Client Vault.” It’s the page clients visit to download and/or upload the documents they need to complete and return to you. In 2020 every business website should have a password-protected page like this for convenience and efficiency.
If the pages that describe you and your services have not been updated in two years, it’s time to contact a copywriter or editor to update it. If you have not updated your site in 4-5 years, chances are high that your site needs an overhaul in 2020.