After all the sweat, struggle, and salary you invested to build and launch your website, you may be looking forward to ticking it off your to-do list and moving on to something else, but now is time for just the opposite! For a website to remain healthy and be a thriving support system for your business, it must be updated—and continuously. You want to write new content and regularly update your website to maintain your business’ circle of life.
How does this work? Updates and new content provide value to your existing clients and customers, ensure your site ranks higher in online searches, and brings in new audiences. All of which boost your business’ reputation, income, and sales.
Tending to your site may seem like yet another chore taking you away from your business, but in reality, when you update your website, you’re doing great things to help your business grow.
Update Your Website to Maintain Your Business’ Circle of Life
Here’s how the circle of life for websites works from a technical, organic, and community-building perspective:
- Technical: New content satisfies many SEO criteria and puts your site into a position of being more readily seen by new audiences.
- Organic: Once audiences see your content, they are engaged by it and develop a relationship with your brand.
- Community-building: Your content and its continual presence become currency for your audience, who then share it on social media with yet more people.
See the circle taking shape?
Technical Reasons You Should Update Your Website
1. Word volume = Keywords
The more words you have on your website, the more landscape there is for Google to crawl over as it looks for specific keywords.
Keywords are the words people use when they do online searches for things. For example: “writing coach for nonfiction book proposal” or “fair trade coffee delivery.”
The more extensive your site’s landscape, the more likely it is that you will have used the specific keywords people are searching for.
This is entirely about volume: let’s say you own a bakery that specializes in gluten-free treats, and you blog once every few months or not at all. Your competitor across town that specializes in treats for folks with dietary issues blogs once a week. Which of you is more likely to have spoken to what people are searching for?
When someone does an online search for something you offer on your site or have written about in a blog (and you’ve used specific strings of keywords (called “long-tail keywords”)), Google will locate those keywords on your website. Ping! That is in and of itself the first win.
Takeaway: sorry, Marie Kondo, but more is merrier when it comes to digital volume on your website.
2. Provide a Valuable Container for the Keywords
As a next step, Google will look at the bigger picture: the container holding the keywords, or your web pages’ “health”.
When Google locates the keywords on your site, it doesn’t serve up your site right away. No, this is when it digs deeper to determine whether those keywords are nestled in an otherwise valuable vessel of website pages and a website generally.
What defines “valuable” when it comes to a website? The SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, criteria Google uses to check your site’s value change daily, but some of the big ones are:
- A site that is regularly updated, which shows it is current and cared for
- A site that gets good traffic and has a low “bounce rate” (meaning people spend time reading your updated content before they bounce)
- Links to other reputable sites (which shows you’re part of a thriving community)
- 5-star reviews
- SEO pages and images
- And then about 200 other little things that indicate you’re an updated thriving business.
A website that hasn’t been updated indicates to Google that it’s less valuable. You may have used the keywords, it may be mobile-friendly, and you might have satisfied a number of the criteria. But if your site has not been updated, it may drop down, even waaaay down the list when someone is searching for what you do and offer (and no one has time or interest to weed through the hundreds of pages of businesses when they’re Googling “best gluten-free scones near me”).
If your business isn’t in the top 2 or 3, that’s a lost sale.
Personal Reasons You Need to Update Your Website and Create New Content
Caring for Your Clients and Customers’ Needs
Blogs, which are online articles that speak to a need or concern your clients and customers have and provide insights, tips, or other valuable information that helps them make your audience feel uniquely heard, understood, and valued. Those emotions translate into their feeling a personal connection to your business, which then translates into loyalty, which translates into sales. That’s all currency, and one that pays off exponentially!
Blogs indicate to people that you are invested in their well-being enough to take the time to help them by providing information that’s useful to them. People naturally feel warmer toward a business that blogs because a well-written blog is akin to a conversation. In our modern era of high tech everything and less and less human connection, your human voice reaching out with wisdom and care means a lot to your audience. Sharing blogs is something people readily do when they feel they are useful, insightful, or touch a positive nerve.
Your Clients’ Emotional Alignment
The site pages
The core information and sales pages on your site showcase who you are, what you offer, and your pricing. You want to make sure the website pages are optimized for search engines with keywords, meta data, etc. as well as are easy to read and feel visually and emotionally inviting with on-brand images and tone. Your website is your business’ online store, and of course you want it to be inviting.
Now imagine the stuff in the store as inventory; if you leave it on the shelf for too long untouched, it will get dusty and go past its expiration date. In time, your visitors will stop visiting.
When you update your website content on your core pages, you’re showing your audience that you’re out there (the magician behind the curtain) and that you care to connect with them where they are now.
An example of this might be to offer a discount for a specific holiday, new products your clients and customers are requesting, updated information about what you and your team are up to on your “About” page, or new pages that offer more services, information about your services or products, or recent reviews or press.
There isn’t a hard and fast rule for how often you should update your content. The most important thing to remember is that updating keeps your content fresh and relevant.
A good rule of thumb is to revisit pieces at least once a year. If you have a trends article for a specific year, set a reminder to come back to that piece and update it for the next year.
Community-Building Reasons to Write New Blog Content and Update Your Website
When people feel connected to a business, they commonly align themselves with it, wanting to keep company that enhances or augments their own values or character. That’s one of the ways in which communities are created and why people talk about “their” beer, wear branded clothing, buy apple computers, and carry tote bags from the public library, the New Yorker, or One Lit Place 😊. One could argue that a substantial percentage of who we are as people is constructed from our associations with others.
Takeaway: It’s a competitive world out there. There are plentiful business that not only offer the same products and services as yours but that also make the time to continually update their websites and write blogs to serve their customers and maintain their business’ circle of life.
Make sure you build in systems to update your content to stay at the top of your game.
When you update your website, you’re putting your business’ best foot forward with your audience as well as putting yourself in the best position for being served up to new audiences as one of the top useful businesses who does what you do.
Making writing new content and updating your website a part of your day-to-day operations will ensure your business remains healthy, and your audience happy, and the wonderful circle of growth continues.
We know your to-do list is miles long, and we’re here to help.
If you need:
- New content written or edited in the voice and with the purpose of your brand to uniquely serve your clients and customers
- To learn more about the art and science of blogging in our 6-part self-guided online course The Blogshop
- To fast-track writing a book that supports your business or an aspect of your services in our Write Your Business or Self-Development Book in 4 Months Program
Contact us to talk about how we can help you grow your business. We’re always happy to chat!
The big truth you have hit on for me is walk away. Seriously, I walk away about every 15 mins. The other weird thing I do is read my stuff out loud backwards. The brain is a master at forming patterns. Part of my creative process is to interrupt these patterns in an unconventional way. fyi
Reading your blog really inspire me! Your article is really nice to read! Good job!