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5 Ways to Improve Your Digital Presence in the Time of COVID-19

With many businesses operating at less than full capacity due to the coronavirus, it’s more important than ever to have a virtual presence that makes it clear that you’re open for business. In addition, due to an increase in people working from home and the stay at home orders, businesses may find that their audience is spending more time online. With that in mind, it’s not too late to do a quick check over a few areas of your site to make sure you’re ready for an influx in visitors.

1. Site Performance

With more people staying connected from their home internet or cell phone data, site speed remains an important factor to keep visitors on your site longer. If site visitors have to wait too long for a page to load, they may leave and try to find the information they were looking for somewhere else. Site speed problems frequently start with the hosting service you purchase, which often means “you get what you pay for.” Providers that boast payment plans of just a few dollars a month are often where site speed and downtime can be an issue. Within the site content itself, excessive CSS loads, Javascript, and large photos and videos can cause load times to increase dramatically compared to lighter page content. Using a service like Google’s PageSpeed Insights can help you see what might be bogging down your site, and provide tips on how to improve it.

2. Content Review

Hopefully content marketing has been a long time strategy of your business. If it hasn’t, or if it’s been a while since you last gave your content a refresh, now is the time to do so. A good place to start is simply to make sure that your content speaks to your message at a basic level, and on a level that web crawlers will be able to connect the two. On each page, you’ll typically want around 300 words minimum, touching upon relevant keywords where possible. However, don’t sacrifice quality just to fill up space–ultimately your audience is customers, not just the search algorithm. Beyond this, check SEO-specific settings like your title tags, meta description, image alt-tags, and make sure your links are still working. While it’s difficult to have “perfect” SEO, chipping away at each of these factors can make a huge difference in the visibility of each of your pages.

3. Shopping Experience

Whether you’ve had to recently switch your business model to online sales, or you’ve been using ecommerce for a while, it’s important to make sure each customer’s experience is quick and painless. Go through the checkout process yourself on desktop and mobile to make sure there is little effort required to make a purchase. Also, look to your analytics and see where people are dropping off in the checkout process. If your shoppers are leaving items in their cart without buying, consider using a remarketing campaign to re-engage them as they browse the web and hopefully bring them back to complete their purchase.

4. Business Listings

Keeping your website up to date with any changes to your business’ hours, product availability, and other operational changes is essential, but that is not the only place this information should be updated. Many users find information about a business on other sites, such as Facebook, Google My Business, and Yellow Pages. If your information is outdated there, you may be losing potential business. Most listing sites allow you to claim your business in order to login and make updates to your page, however sometimes this can be a time consuming process — especially with the number of listing sites that are out there! A good strategy is to focus on some of the top sites where you regularly receive reviews, or where your customers are most active. However, if you want to make sure you cover your bases, Pulse offers a listing service that allows you to claim dozens of listing sites (and potential customers!).

5. Social Media Integration

For some businesses, it may be more natural to keep your social media presence active while your website stays relatively the same. However, it’s important not to let some of that great information go unnoticed for users who only visit your website. Some social media posts and updates may be more difficult to share on your site unless you’re keeping a blog. To make sure site visitors can see and engage with this information, make sure your site links to your social media profiles, or — better yet — utilize a social media feed plugin to bring your social posts and website together. There are several free and paid versions out there to help you show the content you want from your favorite social platform.

Although it might take a little time to go through this list, the good news is that all of these suggestions will be helpful now and in the future when business operations return to normal. If you need additional help or insights into your site performance, take advantage of the free website audit we are offering to show potential areas for improvement including some of those listed above. As always, if you’re in need of additional marketing assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact the Pulse team!

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