Are you ready to commit your website?
That’s the question that has been going around my head recently when I think about creatives, artists and heart-centred business owners setting up their websites.
When you’re setting up in the professional capacity or you’re at the point where you need a website to promote yourself or your work, a website can feel like something to tick off your to-do list.
You’re probably more excited about creating your work, finding clients to help or find partners for project work.
Asking whether you are ready to commit to your website might seem like a strange question – I mean it’s not like the great responsibility of looking after a child or a pet. Yet when you decide to build a website for your business or to raise your profile, you are taking on a responsibility.
How you may ask?
Professional websites need to be invested in and nurtured. A bit like plants that need to be watered every so often to keep them functioning and doing their own thing.
The same applies to a well-maintained, up to date website. It helps you put your best foot forward. Ensures that you look and sound professional in the online space, as well as building on your reputation.
There are three main areas that need a serious commitment to ensuring you have a website that builds your reputation.
When you decide to build a website, you are taking on an annual financial commitment. Every year you will need to renew your web address (aka your domain name) and your web hosting. This can be a significant amount of money depending on which service you go for.
Whichever web hosting or software you use, it’s worth looking at whether they provide the ability for you to grow your website as your needs and budget grow.
Websites need looking after on a regular basis. Whether this is making sure, in the case of WordPress, that the WP engine and plugins are updated on a monthly basis to keep it secure, to shifting through the pages and posts to make sure content is still relevant.
Often the regularity of the maintenance of your online platform is dictated by the type of website you have. If it is a simple, mostly informational-based website then it’s more of a case of making sure your work and services are still reflective of where you are professionally at the moment. Whereas, if you sell a lot of different artworks or products – you’ll be checking into your website to update it more often – do you have the time to really do this?
Marketing and Promotion Commitment
One of the best ways to keep your website up to date, yet can take a significant amount of commitment is making sure the content of your website is always up to date.
Seeing out-of-date contact details, services or a blog that hasn’t been updated in over a year doesn’t inspire confidence with the people you are hoping to work with.
For this, you need what is called a content marketing strategy helps you in figuring what content you want to create for your website, when and how. One of the ways to keep your website fresh is business blogging. Committing to publishing, even one blog post a month will show not only consistency in your delivery, but you’ll also have a concrete strategy for driving traffic to your website from your social media.
Wherever you are on your website journey – whether you’re setting up or looking at your current website with fresh eyes – think about if you have the time and money to be able to commit to nurturing your website the way you want to.
If you have, great! If not, then perhaps it’s time to consider drawing in people who can help. You can do this by hiring a VA or content professional who can help with blog post writing or updating your pages.
We all have ideas of how we want to do things, though once life gets in the way, can make things feel impossible to keep on top of. Committing even to the basics of making sure you check in with your website once a month will put you ahead of people who don’t at all.