Halloween is upon us: time to decorate with cobwebs, visit a haunted house, and watch some scary movies. If you’re looking for a good spook this season, you might not have to look further than your own website. A home care agency’s website at first glance seems like a nice, comforting place, or it should. But, there are a number of “scary” things that can happen, particularly when the site does not receive regular attention. Let’s take a look at some of the scariest things that can happen to home care websites and how to “exorcise” these online demons.
The Contact Form Graveyard
The forms set up on your website are your lead generation hot spots. They help potential clients contact you and allow you to save information to keep marketing to those contacts. However, forms are often set up using website plugins. A plugin is a piece of software that gives the website additional functionality. If plugins are not regularly updated or set up correctly from the get-go, the information on your forms may not be getting to your intake staff. If it’s been a while since you’ve seen a notification from your website contact form come through, check first to make sure you’ve set up the right email to receive those notifications. Then, have an expert, like the corecubed web maintenance team, check to ensure your form plugin is up to date and working properly.
Attack of the Spam Bots
We’ve talked about the bot invasion before on the corecubed blog and how these maniacal online robots can distort the Google Analytics of your website, but these creepy little guys can do more than that! Bots also crawl your website looking to steal information, exploit security loopholes, and pretend to be something they are not. The good news is that there is something you can do to actively fight the bot invasion. Don’t skimp on website maintenance! Having a professional regularly update your website, perform an offsite back up, check for and close gaps in your security, and clear out any malicious looking code is the best line of defense, and, you guessed it, our web maintenance experts can help!
The Invisible Website
Arguably, one of the scariest things that can happen to home care websites is being invisible; it’s out there, live online, but no one can see it, no matter how much they Google “home care”. Sites become invisible for a number of reasons:
- Lack of SEO: SEO is the multi-layered strategy that helps your website get found during an online search. When you don’t invest in SEO, your website sinks further and further down the list and into oblivion as far as most searchers are concerned. But, an ongoing, professional SEO strategy helps your site stay high in the rankings for specific keywords and gets your business seen by more potential clients. corecubed’s SEO experts can analyze your website and develop a comprehensive SEO strategy to help your site stay as visible as possible.
- Blacklisting: Another way for your website to go invisible is for it to get blacklisted. Google’s priority is protecting online users and giving them the best experience possible, so when they come across a site that has a malicious virus or malware or is inappropriately trying to game the system in order to raise their search engine ranking (i.e. through black hat SEO tactics) they will tag the site with a warning that it may be unsafe for users to visit or simply remove the site from its search engine. Once your site is blacklisted, you cannot be found in an online search, and it takes lots of time and effort to remove your site from a blacklist, so it’s best to ensure you’re using proper SEO tactics and have a well-maintained site to avoid becoming an Internet ghost.
The Zombie Crawl
We’ve all visited a zombie site, one whose load time drags along like those shambling creatures from The Walking Dead. Slow site speed isn’t just an inconvenience; it’s a good way to lose customers. After all, you’re not the only agency in town, and if your potential clients can get their information faster, believe us, they will! Plus, a slow website makes your agency look unprofessional and can even lose you points with Google. Slow speeds are caused by a number of factors, from poorly optimized images and other front-end content to bulky code. By examining all parts of your site, a professional developer can assess what could be slowing down your site and get it back to the land of the living.
The Creepy Website Clown Mask
OK, we’ve all heard the news stories about clowns terrorizing towns across the country lately, and by this point, we’re all a little creeped out by those birthday party tricksters. Maybe it’s the crazy make-up or the flamboyant outfits, but clowns have long been fodder for nightmares. Similarly, when your home care website plays dress-up, it’s important to dress to impress, not to terrify. Poor website design can make potential clients run screaming in a heartbeat, while a professionally designed site gives users all the information they need simply and easily and makes your company look professional as opposed to preposterous. What makes for scary web design?
- Complicated navigation
- Improper use of color (Think blue text on a neon green background. Yikes!)
- A layout that isn’t easily followed
- Images that aren’t appropriate to the topic
- Design elements that get in the way of the content
- Poorly written content
Hiring a professional to design your website can help remove that creepy mask and let your professionalism shine through.
Taking the Fright Out of Your Site
There are plenty of website horror stories out there, but if you have pros on your side, you can safely avoid them. Routine web maintenance is like an exorcism for your website, clearing away the ghosts and the cobwebs and helping things run smoothly. And SEO and content services can help keep your site relevant and visible in online searches.
If you’re looking for some website Ghostbusters, look no further than the corecubed team. Contact us to learn more about our home care website maintenance and SEO services and how we can keep your website from being haunted.