I had a telephone conversation with a fellow professional this morning about their new website (which I won’t share with you here for reasons which will become apparent).
The person concerned has invested in an attractive new site which has some very useful features, is approachable and demonstrates their experience well. The firm have also set up a facebook page and a twitter account which is engaging and shares useful information.
‘Is it working?’ I asked. ‘Well I think so,’ she replied.
‘Do you have google analytics on the site?’ I asked. No. No analytics at all to speak of. It has been a rush and the web guy is busy all the time.
The problem with this is that this person doesn’t know if her social media activities are working, and she won’t until she makes her website perform the job it should be doing. That job is to generate more business for her.
So I thought I would post here 5 steps to make sure you have your website working for you as part of your social media strategy.
1. Be in the right places
Make sure you are in the online places that your customers and advocates use. Just as with choosing the right places to network, you don’t want to waste time in the wrong breakfast meeting. Do some research and make sure you can find out where they are, and make sure you’re there too. For professional people, Linkedin is an obvious place, but Twitter also has a growing user base in construction, for example. Go and have a look for your customers. Where do they hang out?
2. Be googlable for your terms as well as your name
The obvious online place everyone uses is Google. Make sure that people who do search for you can find you via google. You’d be surprised how many people can’t quite remember the name of that architect but they know they have an office in Ipswich. And ensure that your website is optimised so that people searching find you, when you are the answer to their question.
3. Be useful on your site as well as when tweeting
Make sure that you use twitter, forums, linkedin, facebook etc to link back to useful content on your website. This means that you need to provide useful content on your website. A blog is a very good, low cost way of doing this without incurring significant ongoing charges from webdesigners. Set up a pdf download plugin and image handling tools and you can do it all yourself. Next time someone asks you a question, you can blog about it too. This will attract more people to your website where they will look around.
4. Encourage measurable actions
Even if you have your own business, you must justify the use of your time using social tools, so make sure you measure the results. When I joined twitter the traffic to our company website increased dramatically, including search clickthroughs by 79%. If you have items that can be downloaded, track them. If you can create a newsletter or blog monitor the signups – these are people who want to hear more from you. Find ways to measure the intangibles like people calling direct from your website. Create actions which can be measured, to show you how your strategy is working, or not.
5. Measure and Test
Choose a range of actions to monitor and begin to measure them. Install google analytics on your website and blog (it is free) and learn how to use it. Create goals for the pdf downloads and for completions of your ‘request a ringback’ form. Then, try out different types of activity and see what works. Be ruthless with your time and measure the results. Then if things don’t work, you can analyse why and remove the glitches. And if things do work, you can do them again and more of the same!
There are my five steps to make sure you have the your website working properly as part of your social media strategy. Did I miss something out? Please do share it below.
Don’t know how to do these things? Why not ask me to help you?