You work hard to keep your place of business clean, inviting, and helpful for your customers. You should approach your website's appearance in the same way.
Someone is searching for a site. Merrily searching away. They come across yours in their search results. Oh it looks so interesting… they must stop by for a peek! As they enter your site, they see outdated information, but they continue on investigating. They click a link that leads to an error page. They click another link and see an “under construction” page. They visit the "about us" page and see a photo of someone they know left your company 4 years ago.
Is this how people see your website?
The visitor is very scared now. Then they notice a misspelled word in your title! And… poof… they are gone. Your site might as well have been the house in The Amityville Horror as they practically left it screaming and running! Why? All because you didn’t take the time to keep it up. But really, why did they leave running? Let’s explore that, shall we?
In this day and age of hackers, phishing, and stolen identities, internet users need to feel that sites they are visiting are legit and not trying to steal their life away. And at the VERY least, that sites won't take up their valuable time by making them sift through a bunch of old material just to find nothing of value. And really, why bother having a site if you are not going to do anything with it? Isn’t the point of your website to inform potential clients what you have, what you do, and how you can help them?
If you have a store - a real brick-and-mortar store - you keep it clean, keep the shelves stocked with current items, make a welcoming environment for your patrons to come in, browse, and (most importantly) buy, right? When they walk through the door, you greet them, and ask how you can help. Why not look at your site this way? Your online presence is an offshoot of your business - shouldn’t it be just as inviting to a visitor? Absolutely! You should care about your virtual storefront, as it has the power to attract customers 24/7/365. Tell the people what you have! But tell them in a way that makes them realize you are there to help them. And those people you're telling, make sure you're attracting the correct ones! Draw them to your site with blogs and frequent site updates. Think about the problems your potential clients are looking to solve, and use quality web design that focuses on those solutions for those clients. And great googly-moogly please make sure everything works, and is mobile ready.
Not sure how to get that storefront presentable again (or how to build effective websites)? Hire a professional to help keep your site current. Not sure if you need one? This checklist can help.