Website maintenance is vital to your business, yet isn’t widely talked about in the industry. We at TourismTiger believe that it is just as important as having a beautiful site built in the first place. After all, if you don’t keep your site updated and maintained, you’re going to eventually need a new one. As Head of TigerCare, I work with our customers to keep their websites up with the latest trends in website design, ensure that all content reflects their current offerings, and design and implement updates on a monthly basis. Maintaining your website is crucial to success in today’s hyper-competitive internet economy. Are you wondering why yet?
1. It’s the face of your company
Your website is the most important impression generator of your company. Before the internet, salespeople were the front lines of a business’s external relations. Their job was to generate a positive first impression of your company by reflecting the values and quality of the business in their interactions. Now, however, before a prospect even reaches your sales team, they are likely to visit your website.
Think about it like this: your website is a snapshot of your company that allows visitors from all across the globe to independently form an opinion about your business. So, it’s essential that you ask what sort of first impression your website leaves.
A well-maintained website that contains accurate, up-to-date, and relevant information portrays a level of professionalism. A website with incorrect information, broken links, outdated content shows a lack of care that generates a feeling of distrust. People are trusting you with their leisure time and money, especially in the tourism industry as they often book for whole groups. The very least they expect is that the information on your website be an accurate depiction of current offerings. The likelihood of someone booking a tour on a website that lists dates from last year is pretty slim. If your website is not up to par, your expertise will not help you a bit.
2. SEO is constantly changing
SEO could quite easily be considered the most important reason to manage your website. Google updates its search algorithm very regularly — in the first half of 2018 alone, there were 4 updates to the algorithm. Many successful techniques in SEO used just 5 years ago are now being penalized by the search engine. Even the smaller updates that don’t affect the core of the algorithm have a sort of cumulative effect that, if left ignored, can cause your site to go from ranking on the first page to lost in the shadows in just a few years.
In March, Google rolled out an update called “mobile-first indexing,” meaning that it will “use the mobile version of the page for indexing and ranking.” This is a large change that is going to have a rolling effect on many sites and rankings in the future. SEO is vital to online sales success, so staying on top of the latest trends is a top priority.
Not only does Google advance its algorithms constantly, but it also “crawls” or reviews and analyzes your site consistently. This allows it to assess how often content is being updated. Moz, one of the industry leaders in SEO, claims that “freshness” — whether in the form of new content, consistent changes, or improving user experience — is a factor in Google’s algorithm. If you and your competition have very similar offerings, both generating off-page buzz, freshness could be the deciding factor of who is ranked higher. While a well-maintained website is not the only key to ranking on the first page of Google, it is a factor.
3. Getting hacked isn’t fun — stay safe by staying updated
Security may not have the glamor of SEO, but it shouldn’t be overlooked by any means. Analyzing your risk and staying on top of software updates are vital to ensure that your site is safe along with any data stored there. Here at TourismTiger, we add SSL certificates to all of our sites, load via HTTPS, have daily backups, and stay on top of WordPress core and plugin updates. Using out-of-date software or programming languages means you are not receiving newer security patches, or the techniques that are used to combat hacking.
4. New trends and technology are emerging every day
Programming languages, new features, and technological advances all are rolling out at a breathtaking pace. Keeping with the times is essential in order to be perceived as a leader in your area. An outdated website can drive visitors away. Users are trained to expect a website to look a certain way, which is why user experience is so critical to gaining sales. If your user experience is out of date or confusing it can be detrimental. On the other hand, a fresh site that is easily navigated can have amazing positive effects on your sales numbers.
At TourismTiger, we take great pride in our TigerCare website maintenance services. We provide full-time support to keep content up-to-date alongside taking care of all security-related tasks and making sure that your site is on the leading edge of new technology. In today’s technological age, your website is one of the most powerful tools at your business’s disposal. It’s necessary to capitalize on this and cultivate all of the potential benefits…as well as staying sleek and modern!
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