Why We Recommend That Local Businesses Invest In A Website Platform Before Spending On Marketing

Any successful digital marketing campaign is going to require a website platform that is designed for SEO, conversions, and ease of management. This is because all marketing activities, including optimizations for Google My Business (an essential part for local businesses), will be directed toward the site and it will be up to the site to covert the received traffic. In other words, to get the maximal ROI for your marketing investment, your website needs to be up to the job of extracting value from the traffic it receives.

The other reason why we often recommend a platform rebuild prior to marketing is that there are synergies between marketing channels that can drastically lower cost and improve the effectiveness of individual marketing tactics when a site is optimally constructed. A common example of cross-channel synergies are the creation of geotargeted landing pages that can benefit both organic and paid searches.

We consider the following to be critical technical components of a website that must be enabled before we will commence marketing activities:

  • An administrative backend that allows for control of code between the head and body tags of a page on a page-by-page basis, and URL of a web page
  • Rapid landing page development and deployment capabilities
  • Well-defined, site-wide, conversion points
  • CRM or lead tracking integration
  • HTTPS enablement
  • Mobile responsiveness
  • Clean, easily “readable” HTML code
  • A minimal of 10 existing site pages
  • Analytics, tagging and tracking functionality
  • FTP access
  • A dedicated point of contact who can work with us to implement recommendations fast

While there certainly do exist workarounds for directing marketing traffic to an “underdeveloped” core site, there are significant disadvantages to the workaround approach.  Namely that utilizing one workaround seems to begot the need for other workarounds until finally the site is a patchwork of workarounds implement for channel-specific marketing reasons.  And at the end of all the workarounds (if there truly is such a thing ), the time, effort, and expenses invested in deploying and maintaining the workarounds exceeds those of building a new site from scratch.  This fact is made even more acute if the client is a local business owner with a limited budget.  And not to mention, the workaround approach is far less productive for digital marketing activities.

Often local businesses will reach out to us to activate a marketing campaign, but when we do our checks for the “critical components” discussed above, we frequently find that there is significant work to be done in order to get the site ready for the job of converting traffic, particularly visitors from paid marketing channels.  Quite frequently, the recommended site enhancements exceeds the internal capabilities of the small business.  Moreover, if the updates are implemented, when all is said and done, the end result is what is essentially a new website, anyway.

Our Managed Site Marketing Program Gets Local Business Sites Up and Running Fast

But this post isn’t all about gloom. It’s about opportunity as much as anything else.  When it’s apparent that a site redesign is in order, we often prescribe one of two options for our clients: either a standalone web design project or our Managed Site Marketing. The briefest description of our Managed Site Marketing Program is that we will (1) build and optimize our client’s site from the ground up (2) host it on our secure servers (3) create content for it (4)  and develop its lead flow and conversion paths. One of the biggest advantages of our “managed marketing service” approach is that it allows our clients to focus on running their business while we, the experts, take care of maintaining their online presences and generating new leads.  We have several clients that have opted for our Managed Site Marketing Program and it has exploded open their lead channels and ramped up their business.

Usually, local business websites are relatively small, so we can extract it’s components, design, and other media to build a new version of it onto our website platform and get it up to snuff relatively quickly. Our platform is secure, mobile, friendly and will give our online marketing experts the tools they need to optimize a site across multiple fronts quickly and effectively. Of course our clients will have the ability to approve any design changes, content, or media we use under their brand. Once the new marketing-ready version of the client’s site is completed, our clients can then point their DNS to our server which will make it live on the internet.  Optionally, we can also install the new site on our client’s existing web host along with any necessary server-side enhancements.

With the core site rebuilt, we can then proceed with marketing tactics such as Google MyBusiness, email, social media marketing that comprise our Managed Site Marketing Program without having to worry about platform limitations and ineffectual workarounds.