Good copy is a vital part of your website’s ability to attract customers and rank well with Google, but even the most engaging copy needs to be refreshed once in a while if it’s to continue performing effectively. Here are 5 warning signs that your copy is in need of change.
Your Customer Base Has Evolved, But Your Content Hasn’t
Your content should represent your business, but it’s even more important for it to represent your customers. Even the most fabulous copy won’t hit the spot if it’s aimed at the wrong audience.
Let’s imagine you offer technological equipment, and you’ve evolved from selling to fellow techies to targeting the common man. Your content might have been the cat’s pyjamas when aimed at the informed, but how is all that jargon going to appear to the layman? They’ll probably bolt when they can’t make head or tail of things. Want new customers? You need new copy.
You’re Speaking to the Wrong Google
Nothing stands still on the old interwebs, Google least of all. Their algorithm dictates where your website ranks on search engine result pages (SERPs), and that algorithm is refined over time. You might have been playing by the rules a few years ago, but rules change.
For example, your keyword-heavy content and duplicate pages might have helped you rank a few years ago, but Hummingbird and Panda updates changed everything. Even small shifts matter; last year’s Panda 4.2 update impacted an estimated 2-3% of searches (roughly 36 million). Don’t understand how to write to rank in the current system? Make sure you find someone who does.
It’s Been a Year or Two
Google isn’t just interested in content that conforms to its algorithms – freshness is also important. When you update your site, Google’s spiders scutter out to comb through content and rearrange your rank. The more frequently this happens, the more opportunities you have to rank higher.
Content doesn’t have an expiration date, but it does have a copyright mark. Scroll down to the bottom of your site to find yours. Is the year given any year but this one or the one before? If so, consider your content in need of an update.
Your Accuracy is Lacking
Maybe your copy is fresh, makes Google happy, and speaks to your current audience. That’s great, but is all the information accurate?
It’s surprising how many otherwise exceptional sites possess out of date information. Maybe your ‘About Us’ page paints an intriguing and approachable impression of each team member, but John from HR has now left to trek the Andes. Perhaps a sales page converts even the most reticent of buyers, but one of the products on offer is no longer available.
It Doesn’t Give You Goosebumps
Sit down and read through your content with an open mind. How does it make you feel? Not all websites need to be vibrant and fun, but reading through the content should at least give you the feeling that what is written is portraying your business exactly as you’d like it to.
You should feel proud when you read through your site and excited about the possibility of other people taking a peek. If you aren’t, it’s a good sign you need a refresh.
Remember, your website’s copy is never truly done and dusted; you need to update and refresh over time to make sure it’s still performing its role as effectively as possible. If any of the signs above apply to you, it’s time to make a change.