Every time I have to go through a redesign of my website as my business evolves, I wonder, ‘Why do I need a website’? Let me start off by saying, I have a service business NOT a product business that necessitates an e-commerce site. In the latter case, a website is the ideal platform for an online store.
But for services that constantly need to evolve as social media and the rest of the new technology grow, my website is always changing. It reminds me of the story of the bridge that is always being painted.
In the last two or three years, my website has been in the process of redesign three or four times. Does this mean that I am doing something wrong? Or is it the nature of the beast?
• A blog with all the same pages as my website
• About ten Facebook pages (one for every aspect of my business)
• Two twitter pages (one for my service business and one for creative material, my former business)
• Three LinkedIn pages for the above reason including two for my current work, an individual and a business page
• Several profile pages, Gravatar, Google and Google Plus
• A YouTube account as well as accounts for several dozen other social media venues
The Importance of a Website for a Freelance Writer
So what special and separate purpose does a website serve from the above extensive list of online presences? According to the Inbound Marketing pundits, a website should start off with and include numerous important criteria ‘above the fold’:
• Contact Information
I have that everywhere including my e-mail signature
• A ‘call to action’
Before the change facebook made the other day, which eliminated the use of a particular app, my welcome page provided an ideal ‘call to action’ that appeared close to the top of the page.
• Links to social media, blogs, news and other pertinent info
All appear in the right hand column of my blog and near the top of the page
• A blog subscription form
Again appears on my blog near the top of the page
• A ‘lead capture’ or newsletter sign up form
Also appears on my blog near the top of the page
• An ‘opportunity to purchase’
A specific service offered has its own facebook page that is semi-automated
• Announcements and news
These can be made through permission based ‘bulk’ e-mails
So why is all of the above insufficient? In making this list, I realize that each tool appears separately and in disparate places. So what if there was one place where all of the essential data could appear in an orderly, seamless manner that made sense and created a unique, synergistic statement that functions as a super powered marketing machine to attract new and existing customers? That sounds good to me.
In addition to having all of the above mentioned details in one place and easy to access, creating this super powered marketing machine, there are several more subliminal reasons why a website is considered indispensable:
• To show that a company has a history and that it is an established business
• To set the tone and feeling of the brand
I will accept the concept that a website is the hub of the Inbound Marketing wheel and answers the question of how to organize all kinds of details as well as establish certain criteria. But there has to be an easier way to do this so I don’t have to completely ‘reinvent my wheel’ every time my business grows and the technology changes. Do you have any suggestions?
Alison Gilbert is the Digital Age Storyteller and a photojournalist for DBME and other blogs. She is the owner of MARKETING BYTES Business Marketing Solutions. She has been a marketing pro and designer for over three decades. Alison has a ProTeam of experienced marketing professionals offering the latest online marketing technology, social media, graphic and web design, illustration, photo and video, content management as well as traditional advertising. Her client base has covered just about every industry in existence.
Visit: our site, Marketing Bytes, our Facebook page, Marketing Bytes, e-mail us or call us: 516-665-9034.
- Inbound Marketing by Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah
- Above the Fold
- Study Outlines The Importance of a Website to Your Business
- The Importance of a Website
- The Never Ending Paint Job about to finish-and the Forth Bridge painters who will be out of a job
About Alison Gilbert
Through decades as an entrepreneur, I developed ventures in over a half a dozen industries including HEALTH FOOD | GRAPHIC DESIGN | BUSINESS PROMOTION | HOLISTIC HEALTH | DECORATIVE PAINTING | SOCIAL MEDIA | PUBLIC SPEAKING | WRITING. Eventually under the umbrella of ALISON*S ART, INC, they evolved into the dba MARKETING BYTES, a hybrid company specializing marketing small business using social media marketing and traditional graphic design services. Currently retired, I am focusing on teaching social media marketing graphic design and visual journalism. I can be messaged through www.facebook.com/alisondgilbert and tweeted @MktngBytesMaven and @AlisonsArt.