Recently, one of our large multi-site customers went live with a totally updated and revamped site. The thought occurred to me that this is a topic that "anyone" responsible for the regular care and feeding of a website needs to have at top of mind. To the point of sounding like a broken record I'm sure, I remind my clients regularly that websites are very much like real-estate. The main difference is instead of the mantra being, "Location, location, location. It is content, content, content." To be honest, content is only part of a successful formula for creating a site that continually draws traffic and continues to grow your business. A website is made up of three primary parts: content, technology, and visual (look and feel), at its simplest level. All of these foundation bits and pieces needs to be kept current and not looking stale. Why else do you occasionally put a fresh coat of paint on the old homestead?
C2C Consulting has not spent a penny on advertising since its inception. All of our business comes through referrals, and we ARE proud of that fact. The breakdown between website rebuilds, and new websites is heavily slanted to the rebuild side of the ledger. Over the years we hear it all, as to the reason folks are coming to us to rebuild and manage their site. Now, a bit of background information you need to keep in mind is, these are company sites. I'm not referring to a site that an individual(s) develop and publish to communicate along the lines of some hobby they are passionate about, or a family site used to publish pictures and news from the various holidays. These are commercial sites, on to the horror stories. These are actual quotes from some of our clients, although I changed the names to protect the innocent.
For those of you too young to remember, back in the 1950's there was a cartoon on Saturday morning TV that let you dial up a date and then travel back to that time. It was great fun, but in reality, it was just a thinly disguised way to encourage kids to become interested in history. I must admit at least in my case, it did not work. I had a huge dislike for history in school, and the "Way Back" machine did little to improve my opinion. That said, I got over it; eventually. Now out of the 453 cable channels I have available to view, I spend 99.8% of my viewing pleasure on the History Channel, Food Channel, and SyFi. However, that is a whole other story we won't go into here. My reason for writing this post is to describe how laughable it is to me when I see the current news that states a certain company is eliminating the ability for staff members to work from home. Seriously!!!
Sounds like the take on the latest lottery pot, right? Nope; it is the number of active websites on the Internet as we close in on the end of 2012. As I'm sure with many of you, the end of each year, and the anticipation of the next, causes me to reflect. This morning I began to ponder the question, "Were there any common threads in our web development business this year, and if there were, what were they?" And perhaps more important, "What learnings should we take away?" The answer is there were!!!
I admit it! I tried to ignore everything social media for a long time. I decided if I ignored it long enough it would likely go away - NOT SO. Not only did the big two not disappear like a bad dream, they are more prevalent factors than ever in deciding what a company's online marketing strategy should be to make the most effective impact on their target audience. Being from the Midwest, 18 to 24 months ago, I viewed a company online presence as a three-legged stool - Facebook, Twitter, as well as a drop-dead gorgeous website. Now, depending on the business you are in, the stool begins to closely resemble a poly-legged monster. With the advent of the up-and-coming social media sites, "How can you make an effective choice?" Where does a small business spend its limited budget and time to get the biggest bang for its buck? Also, to add another factor into your strategy decision process is answering the question, "How to I address smartphone and tablets?" Here at C2C over the last 12 - 18 months we have seen the traffic take a dramatic shift to the mobile side of the formula.