Once you've built a great WordPress website for yourself or your business, the first thing you may want to do is to lean back in your chair and admire your work. At Website School we encourage this behavior, but not for too long.
You see, a webmaster’s work is never done. It is important to maintain and update your website regularly. If you don’t, customers may not be motivated to return to your website as they already know what's there and what to expect.
How do I get visitors to return to my website?
Consider the same reasons you personally return to a website. You can keep people wanting to return to your website by periodically uploading new information, links to relevant websites and news stories, or creating and maintaining a blog that includes all of these things and also incorporates other media like photos, infographics, quotes, videos, instructions and more.
A blog does not need to be updated every day, though if you have a very high amount of traffic to your site it may be a good idea to hire a writer or content manager. Content managers, editors and writers can create relevant content for your website if you don't have the time. They can keep a steady social media buzz, keep your website alive with new content, entice new customers with free information and in turn grant you the freedom to focus on what you do best.
Should I get a content manager to create relevant content for my website?
Having a content manager has numerous benefits, some include reaching a different audience with a different voice, shedding a fresh light or perspective on your business and helping to shape how others might view or refer to your business. For example, when writing copy for advertisements or press releases you'd like to run, you might try using some of the words from your content manager to attract a different audience.
Start a conversation with your readers
Blogs and social media are great ways for reaching your customers directly and being able to communicate with them. Often, readers will want to comment on something they read in a blog or share it with friends. WordPress websites natively support, encourage and allow comments. This can open a conversation between you and the reader, which is invaluable when getting important feedback for your product or service.
Showing customers that you are available to interact can make all the difference in establishing your trustworthiness as an organization. Encourage your site visitors and social media followers to comment, share their thoughts, sound off, express their support or concern.
Create outbound links, cultivate inbound links
Outbound links to relevant websites are a good way of providing a service to your audience and also forging a relationship between other businesses similar to you.
A good example of this is if you own a bridal dress shop in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. You may want to contact local florists, hair and beauty salons, and reception locations and offer a link exchange, which in the tangible world would equate to something like placing your business cards on their bulletin board.
The idea is this: you create a link on your website to another website that could benefit your readers, and they do the same. Everybody wins, including the site visitor. By linking two websites to each other, you forge a digital relationship that acts almost like a vote of confidence. "Company A recommends Company B, and Company B recommends Company A." This is made evident by the link from one website to the other.
Keep it fresh, but don't flood the web with useless information
Content is king, but crappy content never helped anybody. It is always important to keep your website fresh by making small changes periodically. By spending a little bit of time tweaking your website on a regular basis, you will keep people coming back to your website and ensure their experience is constantly improving.
This also goes for Facebook, Twitter and all your social media accounts. If you do not update and maintain them regularly, people are likely to un-friend you not follow you any longer.
The less people you have as friends or followers, the harder it will be to promote your business through these powerful and predominately free services. A few posts or Tweets now and then should suffice, but remember to keep them interesting. Attention spans are limited.
Don't share irrelevant information
No one is interested in what you had for breakfast or fifteen pictures a day of your dog. Tailor your posts and Tweets to what your company does. Share interesting stuff. Going back to the bridal dress shop as an example: try to give updates on latest runway looks or trends. Similarly, if you own a pet store, try tips for training a dog may prove valuable to your friends and followers.
If your website is about "real estate in Atlanta", don't write blog posts about the Atlanta Braves sweeping the series, Miley Cyrus' new haircut, the new Jordan sneakers or a random piece of pop culture that you think will drive traffic to your site. Google is smarter than you, don't try to "trick" our friend Google into sending you traffic you don't deserve. I guarantee, it won't last long.
Remember “empty” posts and Tweets will deter your friends and followers. Garbage content will turn off your readers. In short, create great content! Everything else will fall into place.
So, sit back, relax and enjoy your website. You worked hard on it.
Then get back to work!