It’s not uncommon for aesthetic practice owners to seek out help with their marketing. Whatever their motivation, the need to streamline marketing efforts, the desire for better rankings, or the desire for more leads, a common “issue” that these folks run into is that they are looking for marketing help but being sold a new website. Aren’t they two different things?! Also, you just paid big money for your site and now you have to re-do it?!
In this article I hope to shed some light on this conundrum. For starters, your website and your marketing efforts are different, but they’re also the same. They’re obviously different because one is your online hub that is constructed from code and the other involves unique tactics that should be implemented each month to drive people to your online hub (to generate leads). Your website is also your most valuable marketing tool. It should be constantly updated with new content, including before & after cases, blogs, and more.
If you find a reputable agency that outlines a comprehensive plan to help you improve your digital marketing efforts your excited may be a bit curtailed by their suggestion (or requirement) that your website be “re-designed.” I use this term “re-design” loosely based on experience. I cannot speak for other agencies, or attest to how they operate, but I’ve listed some instances below when a re-design would be necessary.
*It’s important to keep in mind that almost every digital marketing agency has a preferred Content Management System (CMS) to build websites on, and most of the time that’s WordPress, but whatever the platform, you’ll almost assuredly need to be on their CMS to work with them.
- Your website does not have a blog: This is an absolutely essential part of any website and marketing strategy, if your practice cares about SEO. The easiest solution is to convert your website to WordPress, which I would recommend (we are one of those agencies that loves WordPress). The cheaper solution is to install WordPress on the “/blog” page or on a sub-domain and simply copy the website design over. The drawback to this is you have your website and blog on two different platforms.
- Your website isn’t built on WordPress: Simply put, WordPress is the best blogging platform; you can debate it as the best CMS, but it’s undoubtedly the best blogging platform. Therefore, you might have an awesome-looking site on a great CMS, but your blog won’t be as awesome, or as visible, if you’re using a non-WordPress blog. If this is the case then I’d suggest following my advice in #1 and simply converting your website to WordPress. The advantages to moving to WordPress are numerous, starting with being on the most widely-used, open-source platform available. This results in more plugins available to help you with:
- your photo gallery
- spam control
- posting blogs
- and much, much more…
Again, no need to sugar-coat it, we prefer WordPress. Furthermore, as if you needed another selling point, being on WordPress gives you more flexibility so you’re not locked in to a CMS if you choose to leave your marketing agency.
- Your website has internal coding issues: Often times, internal coding issues will show up as problem on the front-end. If that’s the case then you need to re-develop your website. You might not need a “re-design,” but you need to fix your site’s platform or theme. Other more minor coding issues or quirks may simply make it difficult to manage the website from the backend. One of the more common instances of this is when a particular area of your website backend is hard-coded.
- Your website layout and design is outdated, disorganized, or poorly designed: This is the most subjective of all situations, and there are a varying levels of layout issues. In the example below you can see the screenshot on the left highlights a website that looks to be at least 10+ years old. Most of us would agree that it looks old and should be updated, and you can see the details of this update here. The example on the right shows a nice-looking site with a few flaws, the drop down menu organization, the SEO, the banner/text placement, home page organization, and mobile calls to action. However, they has nice branding on a new WordPress site, so they didn’t need a “-re-design,” just a mini-facelift. You can learn more about that project here.
Use this feedback and your best judgement when evaluating if you need a new website. There’s nothing wrong with your marketing agency requiring your website to be on their preferred platform. However, if you’re already on WordPress you may only need a few tweaks – as opposed to a full re-design – to help the front and backend. These tweaks might mean a better mobile layout, an improved drop down menu, a cleaner home page banner, or better-placed calls to action. Revising an entire theme within WordPress, or moving a site “as is” to WordPress, is more challenging and will take more time.
You can see that many of our recent website projects have been simple facelifts, to steal an aesthetic term. This did not require full re-designs.
If you’re frustrated in your efforts to improve your marketing only to be told you need a new website you’re not alone. Talk to TRBO to learn more about your options. You can also reach us directly at 877-673-7096 x2 or leave us a note here.