By Giselle AguiarAZ Social Media Wiz, Founder

Is your website truly working for you? It should be — 24/7. It’s way more than an online brochure.

The most beautifully designed website, whether it’s a WordPress site or other platform, is of no use if it doesn’t have the following:

  1. Fresh, relevant content, no more than a week old, written, grammatically correct, for your target audience — this converts your static website into a dynamic website. Google ignores static websites. It looks for the freshest content that matches a searchers’ request — that’s what comes up on the first page of Google search. Blog at least once a week.
  2. A reason and a way for visitors to opt-in to your email list — this turns a visitor into a lead. It’s then up to you, with some email, sales or marketing automation system, to turn that lead into a sale. Give them something of value — a free ebook, a coupon, etc. — so they’ll give you their email address. Then deliver on the promise of a monthly newsletter. Note: if you have an e-commerce site or online store, make it easy for people to shop,if that’s your main objective.
  3. An easy way to contact you or set up an appointment — if you want a phone call, the mobile version of your site has to be responsive, so people can all you with one tap. If you want them to contact you via email, have a short contact form. Don’t ask more than 2 or 3 questions. Just what to you need to qualify the lead. Make it easy to set an appointment. Use an inexpensive service like TimeTrade — saves a ton of back and forth emails when setting appointments.
  4. Make it easy for people to follow you and share your content.Social media share and follow buttons — you have to make it easy for visitors to follow you on the networks and for them to share your content with their friends. And don’t put them just in the footer!

So here are a few donts:

  • Don’t make people hunt for what you want them to do.
  • Don’t make your site so flashy that it takes too long to load.
  • Don’t forego design for search engine optimization (SEO).
    • The most beautiful site in the world is useless if no one can find it.
  • Don’t hire a web designer who doesn’t know about proper SEO and social media marketing. It’s part of the online marketing package. You need to know what to look for. Be wise and be educated.

In a nutshell, having a static website is like a billboard out in the middle of the ocean. Sure a passing ship may see it, but that’s it.

About the Author:

Giselle Aguiar, AZ Social Media Wiz Giselle Aguiar, founder of AZ Social Media Wiz is a social media, inbound and content marketing specialist & trainer helping small business owners learn how to leverage the power of social media marketing, increase traffic to their websites, generate leads, increase brand awareness and establish themselves as experts in their fields. She’s the official social media, newsletter and blog manager for Greater Phoenix SCORE and teaches once a month at SCORE. She recently launched the Social Savvy Solutionoffering online, on-demand, easy-to-understand courses. Helping the little guy get social savvy! You can connect with Giselle online at LinkedIn or on Google+.