Top tips for buying a new website
Is your current website looking old and tired?
Is it failing to deliver leads and your potential customers are going to your rivals instead?
It sounds like it may be time for you to get a new website. Before you embark on your project, read our top tips for getting it right:
- Establish what your site needs to do. Do you just need a shop window for buyers to check your credentials or does the site need to generate sales leads? If it's the latter, the site needs to answer buyers' questions and demonstrate how you solve their problems. It will need to be optimised for search engine queries and supported with ongoing updates and content to attract and convert your buyers.
- Know what you're buying. You can purchase a new website for a few hundred pounds but it might not be fit for purpose. To get your site found by buyers, attract them in and be compelling enough to encourage an enquiry takes time and effort. Cheap sites often focus on the design and look great but lack substance leaving you with a shiny new site and not much else.
- Who do I call? If you're outsourcing the project to an agency, check their credentials. Are they building sites for companies similar to yours? Get a feel for the size and scale of the projects they've completed and you will get an idea of the capabilities and costs to expect.
- Who's doing the work? The skill set within the team itself is a good indicator of what to expect. If you meet designers, developers, and SEO specialists, it's a good sign the team are used to creating sites that sell.
- Where will the work be done? Geography is no longer a barrier and outsourcing and offshoring work is common. Providing your data and IP are secure there are benefits in using skills from further afield. Ensure your chosen agency has contingency if using freelancers and offshore services to keep your project on time and budget. Check their customer service credentials so you're confident in the back up and support once the project is complete.
- How will the site be hosted? Are you hosting it yourself, or leaving it with an agency to manage? If so, check whether your site will be on a shared or dedicated server. There's merits in both; shared servers are less expensive but can mean the site loads more slowly and there is a small risk that if an unrelated site on the same server is penalised, your site could be too. Dedicated servers cost more per month, but you benefit from increased load times.
- Don't lose what you have already. Regardless of how well your site is performing, if it's been live for a period of time, it may well have SEO equity that's of value you’ll want to migrate to your new site. Rather than starting from scratch, you carry over your previous site's heritage, which will help the search engines when ranking your site organically in search results. Customers may well have bookmarked pages on your current site, so make sure old pages are redirected to the new ones, so your customers can still get to you.
- What happens next? It will take a few weeks for the new site to bed in and be picked up by the search engines and you will most likely need to write and share content with your database and on social channels to drive traffic into your site. If the search engines can see your buyers visiting your site, navigating through pages and staying on the site, you're more likely to be seen as a 'site of authority' on your chosen subject and appear in the search results.
Secret Source are frequently approached by companies with websites that need to do more for them.
If you think it's time your site upped its game, contact us to find out how we can help you get it right.
Signs you need an automation system