Managed and other IT services providers who want to differentiate themselves from an increasingly crowded field need to find new ways to engage and entice prospective buyers. For MSPs looking to up their marketing game, Liongard is here to help. We’ve got an amazing team of marketing experts in-house with decades of experience they love sharing with MSPs to help them grow. We’ve put together a special 8-part Marketing Series to help you navigate MSP marketing from soup to nuts. Today’s focus will be on website best practices from SEO to analytics with our Director of Demand Generation, Miluse Vejdani.
Why are websites so important for MSPs?
In my opinion, websites are a requirement for any MSP today, from those just starting out to established providers looking to expand to new areas or industries. Your website is basically your online storefront and it’s important you have a presence there to showcase not only your company but what you offer for solutions and then to some degree your size, or the perception of your size as a company. In a lot of ways, you can appear to make yourself larger than you are if you build your website up correctly and have the right content and the right look and feel. It’s how prospects will initially validate you as a company and, if optimized correctly, websites can be incredible lead-generating machines.
What are some things MSPs should keep in mind when building a new site?
In terms of what you want on your website, first you have to make sure that the content you’re presenting is a clear picture of what your MSP does and how to contact you. And this also drives SEO organically because you’re going to be providing information people will be searching for, and Google or other search engines will be able to read your site and rank you appropriately, especially if you include some location targeting. Your content should focus on addressing your customers’ needs versus being more product- and feature-driven. A lot of times what people are looking for on your website is help, and what tends to drive more SEO is thought-leadership that helps answer those questions that people are asking online. And when I say ‘thought leadership’ what I’m talking about are use cases, a blog, podcasts, or something as simple as a testimonial or review posted to your website. You need to have some sort of validation on your site that customer can see to know that you’re a legit business, you can solve their problem, and you have the experience they’re looking for.
How often should MSPs review their websites for look, feel and content?
I think at a minimum you should be checking your website monthly, not only for errors, but to add new testimonials and make other needed updates. Go back and review your data to see if there’s any changes you can make to improve performance or speed of your site. In terms of content, a lot of people ask ‘how old is too old’ but there’s no one answer because it will depend on how that content is performing. If there’s been significant traffic to a page in the past, even if it’s old you’re going to want to keep that page up because it’s contributing to your domain authority and search engine rankings. So what you usually want to do is look at older posts and see if you can redirect to another, more current page, so visitors can see updated information but you’re still getting the traffic benefits from having the older page indexed.
What tools should MSPs use to manage, track and measure the effectiveness of their site?
A content management system (CMS) is key when managing your web content. I’m talking about platforms like WordPress that allow you to manage pages, links and other information on your website. A lot of CMS platforms now are user-intuitive and don’t take a lot of effort to manage, so they’re perfect for making quick edits without needing coding experience.
Typically, you want to analyze traffic and site performance using Google Analytics and Google Search Console because they’re the industry standard and provide a wealth of helpful information. Ideally you want to track your visitors on a daily, weekly and monthly basis, the number of views on each page and the bounce rate (which are users who come to your site an immediately leave after one page view). Analytics will also tell you if you have any broken links on the site you need to fix, crawl errors. These are quick fixes to help improve the performance of your site.
Site assessment tools provide your site’s overall health score. Now, what’s interesting to me is that not all of them are the same. Some tools are going to score a website differently, depending on the philosophy it uses. If you can only pick one, I would recommend focusing on Google’s concept of Core Web Vitals, which measures the user’s experience of page speed.
What are some easy tips for website optimization?
Always include your social buttons. It builds credibility with customers and gives them another avenue to find you online. Also, the more opportunities you have to include where your company is located physically will help your search results if you are targeting locally. In fact, make your contact information as easy to find as possible. You don’t want your customers to have to work to find your phone number or email address, and you should definitely include contact forms if your site has that functionality.
And don’t forget about the look and feel of your site. Make sure it resonates with the prospects you intent to target, so, for example, if you want to reach the healthcare industry you might use that type of imagery and colors on your site to make visitors feel like they’re in the right place. It’s always good to have a refresh of your look and feel periodically to review font and layout and make sure they reflect modern website design. And don’t forget about your mobile design! Make sure everything is mobile-optimized because that’s how everyone is doing most of their research these days, especially with the move to remote and hybrid workplaces.
Step Up Your Marketing Game with Liongard
So what happens when your website optimization efforts start paying off and leads start pouring in? Liongard has your back when it comes to pre-sales assessments with data that can help you accurately price jobs and increase deal size. Want to see how we can transform your sales process? Schedule a personalized demo today.
Questions? Ask Miluse!
Want to dig a little deeper into website strategy or have a question about analytics? Get in touch with our resident web-expert, Miluse at firstname.lastname@example.org.