We hope that all of our clients are staying safe and healthy during this chaotic and scary time. The Boom team is teleworking, social distancing, and washing our hands often.
Since you’re probably spending a lot of time at home, now might be a good time to give your website some more attention. Back before nonessential businesses were ordered to shut down, you may have been busier, and it’s likely that web updates fell to the bottom of your list.
Daunting as it may seem, if you’re able to set up a system that works for you, refreshing your site doesn’t need to be such a hassle. We’ve put together our best tips for making it easier to keep your content fresh.
It’s Important to Update Your Content
Most of us have had the experience of landing on a site that has pictures of the 2015 staff Christmas party on the home page. Outdated content sends a message to users: we’re lazy. Or worse: nothing meaningful has happened with us in the past 5 years. Neither of those puts your best foot forward in earning the trust of potential customers.
On the other hand, a portfolio of recent projects or photos makes a great first impression. It can also be a good idea to keep images up-to-date and acknowledge relevant trends for your industry. No industry is stagnant: your customers’ needs change. Content that reflects those changes will keep you relevant.
Keeping your site fresh is important for user experience, and it’s also important for search engines. Remember, Google’s objective is to connect users to relevant content. When you regularly refresh your content, there’s a better chance that it will be relevant to users who are looking for sites like yours.
How Often Do I Need to Update My Content?
This is the logical question to ask! Unfortunately, there’s no straightforward answer. As you might guess, it depends on your industry. Most service-based and B2B companies can get away with making some changes on a monthly or quarterly basis.
A good rule of thumb is to choose a schedule that you can stick to. If you have a blog, anything from 1-2 posts per month to one post per quarter is usually good. Most business owners already keep up with industry news, but it doesn’t hurt to regularly review your site to ensure your information is up to date.
5 Ways to Get Ideas for Website Content
Tip #1) Answer Your Customers’ Questions
If customers are asking you a question in person or on the phone, chances are other potential customers are asking Google the same questions. Take note of the most common queries, or work with your sales team to identify them.
Check out this photo from one of our clients, a heating and AC rental company. They asked their sales team to record customer questions and use tally marks to record repeat questions. This gave us an idea for one of their most viewed blog posts about the difference between direct and indirect fired heaters, which brings in a lot of website traffic.
If you want to create your own post about a popular question, a good place to do it is on your blog, but you may also consider creating an FAQ page.
Tip #2) Share Project Photos and Descriptions
Many business professionals are able to recall details of a specific project when looking at photos. Customers who are thinking about using your services would be interested to see an online portfolio of recent projects.
A good way to get started is to go through your old photos and send the best ones to your marketing company. See if you can send them a big batch that can keep them busy with creating new content for the foreseeable future.
Tip #3) Mine Reddit for Viral Content
To engage readers you need to write about content that people find interesting. A great way to keep your thumb on the pulse of your customer base is to mine Reddit. This site is broken up into several smaller forums, called subreddits, that exist for any topic you could imagine.
Try searching for a subreddit that falls into your niche, and maybe look for some crossover content. For example, you could look at a subreddit for a city where you’re trying to rank and see what your customers are interested in. One of our clients, a dumpster rental company, once took a quirky Philadelphia news piece and created some saucy dumpster content. This came in the form of a blog post about a block party in Philadelphia where the host used a dumpster as a swimming pool.
If you have a piece of particularly engaging content, consider creating your own post on Reddit. If you go that route, be sure to look at the guidelines of your subreddit first, many have rules in place that forbid posting marketing content. Most internet users understand when they are being fed an advertisement. Keep your content informative, entertaining and avoid coming across as salesy.
Click here to learn more about mining content from Reddit.
Tip #4) Use Other Sites that Compile Ideas
Reddit isn’t the only site to use to find ideas. Other sites use data from web searches to generate search-engine friendly titles that you can use to create interesting blog posts.
Here are some we think are worth checking out:
- Answer the Public: Putting a topic into the search bar will fetch you a list of questions people have about that topic. Your results will be in several formats, including the pictured graphic, which is from a search for “spaghetti.” This graphic is useful because it shows popular questions that are phrased starting with the most common question words: why, where, when, which, who, can, how, what, will, and are. Click here to see the full results for spaghetti.
- HubSpot’s Blog Topic Generator: Input up to 5 nouns into this blog topic generator and find 5 related blog topics.
- Google Trends: This tool analyzes the popularity of a keyword or query on Google search. Not only can you understand search volume, but you can see relevant keywords, which may help you brainstorm additional content ideas.
Tip #5) Recycle Social Media Content
If you already have an active social media presence, you’re halfway there! Social media posts can usually be recycled and created into blog posts. They typically just need a bit of re-wording or fleshing out with additional content.
If you’re intimidated by the idea of posting on your site, social media might be more your speed. Social platforms work well on cell phones, so you can update your profiles when you’re on the go. A few photos and a quick blurb can go a long way.
Keep Up the Good Work!
Here’s a tip that might come in handy in more ways than just helping with content creation. It’s not a bad idea to have a system to log information. To start off, come up with a set of steps to follow before you wrap up each project. It could look something like this:
- Recording details of each job
- Capturing photos
- Sending the project summaries and photos to your marketing team
If you need help thinking of a way to format your blog, check out these 5 blog templates you can replicate for your site.