5 strategies for your website in 2017

5 things you absolutely must be doing with your website in 2017

Question – What’s the plan for 2017?
Answer – World domination. Always.

With that in mind here are Webbuddy’s 5 things you should definitely be doing with your website in 2017.

  1. Switch to SSL

SSL? Yes, it encrypts information coming to and from your site.

(see image below)

Green padlock on Chrome

 

SSL? The green padlock in the url bar to the left of the web address.

Both the green padlock and the https:// (instead of http://) mean the website is using SSL and sending encrypted data to your user’s browser making your site more secure.

Who cares if my site has SSL?
Your end user, your site, Google, data thieves. You!

Why do they care?
Well in no particular order, because…..

  • Users with strict anti-virus software will have your unencrypted site flagged as ‘potentially unsafe’.
  • Chrome users when faced with the “Site not secure” warning will leave the site, for good.
  • If you have e-commerce on your site you should have SSL, consumers are more likely to buy from sites with SSL. In 2017 no one should risk putting their unencrypted information on any site.

The above are the standard reasons for SSL, good reasons one and all …

But … There is an even more important one – Google.

For over two years Google have stated that they will give preference to SSL enabled sites over those that are not (https:// vs http://) in their organic listings. 97% of all search traffic in Ireland is through Google, so for the moment when Google says jump …

Webbuddy puts SSL top of the list. Webbuddy’s suggestion would be to make the switch sooner rather than later. Thanks to LetsEncrypt (a non-profit issuer of SSL certificates), it is also much easier than it has ever been.

  1. Integrate AMP into your website

What is AMP?
It stands for Accelerated Mobile Pages.

It’s 2017, you’re out and about using your phone, you click on a link it takes 10 seconds to load, you get bored, leave the site never to return!

Google has decided that these load times are unacceptable in this day and age. And Webbuddy agrees.

AMP is on the Webbuddy list of must haves this year. Another bow to Google and their way of doing things, reminder #2 – Google accounts for 97% of ALL search in Ireland.

Google have started splitting their index (organic search rankings) in two – Mobile and Desktop. Previously there was one index, where Google would give preference to (and highlight) mobile friendly sites. Most of you made the move to responsive websites 3-4 years ago, so far so good.

However, AMP takes it a step further. It’s a way of accelerating web content for mobile devices. If you want the techie speak, you can get the lowdown here – https://www.ampproject.org/

AMP is one of the key indicators in how Google rates mobile user friendly websites. Google prefers sites that have it over those that don’t. Page speed is already critical, but AMP is going to be a big part of optimisation in the present future.

In simple terms Google would like content to load instantly on your mobile. Google see AMP as the best chance of that happening.

  1. Video, video, video

Webbuddy has been banging this drum for, for, for?

Forever, it seems.

Seriously folks, if you don’t have a generous amount of video content you are losing out on one of the most important facets of web marketing. This means a video on every page, a video ad campaign on Google, Facebook, YouTube and on.

It has higher engagement rates and costs a fraction (per click) of text ads?

What are you waiting for? Get on it.

Oh, one last thing. If you can get a cat into the video, it’ll get a million views. Much like ancient Egyptian times, Cats are back in charge!! Possibly, maybe.

Lights, camera, action!

  1. Remarketing / Targeting

The right people need to see your ad, post or video more than once.

Generic text ads are fine, touch ho hum, but grand.

The only problem with them is 2011 is over. In 2017 if you’re serious about your online advertising you’ll put your beautiful ads, your stellar content in front of as many people as possible, and then put the ads in front of them again. This is remarketing.

Sure, you’re running online ads and have decent traffic to your website. Next step, build remarketing into your Google ad campaign. When users visit your site their IP address is recorded, when they re-appear on the Google network, your ads will appear in front on them again, increasing the chances of a return visit and/or sale.

Meanwhile on Facebook you need to be generating your target audiences, where you target certain audiences then build campaigns around their interests/demographics.

One off Google and Facebook ad campaigns are fine, but if you really want to increase the effectiveness of your campaigns, get remarketing, get targeting. Let’s go out and find your customers!

Now …

  1. Actually review your stats!

Spoiler: Nobody will ever care about your business more than you.

This gets on Webbuddy’s list every year, because every year it’s one of the biggest differences clients can make to their online marketing.

Review your stats? Yup we mean actually reviewing your web stats, sorry. On an extremely regular basis.

Have KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators) set up to monitor progress.

You have Google Analytics installed right?

Do you know your bounce rate?

How many unique visitors did you have last month?

What is the click-through-rate on your ads?

What is the average price per click for your top keywords?

What are your video views on Facebook (not reach, that means nothing!)?

More importantly, how do your figures compare to industry standard?

We often help our clients set up their web strategies. One of the first steps is to set up their KPI’s: what we should be aiming for, then start collecting and collating data. Then review the data. Then make informed decisions. Then adjust the settings. Then record more data. Then review the data. Then make informed decisions. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. Succeed.

Those that find the right mix of traditional marketing and latest digital marketing techniques will be at top of the pile. That won’t change.

The good news!

Webbuddy knows it can all be a bit daunting, and that’s why agencies such as ourselves exist. To help businesses market themselves online, efficiently and progressively. Whatever size your business, you can leverage your online marketing in more ways than ever, and target your audience more precisely. In other words, find customers, and sell to them. Business is still business, and it is still all about selling.

Have a chat with us and see how we can help.

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