By Steve Cerocke
Have you updated your organization’s web presence recently? For a variety of reasons many businesses often put web updates, new hosting service solutions and search engine optimization on the back burner.
For some organizations a web presence may simply be a marketing tool with information that does not change much. Other firms setup ecommerce sites or rely on the web and web search to grow their business and build a competitive advantage.
I often write about investing in and using the latest systems and software to help you stay competitive, increase communication and to improve the reliability and usability of your business technology. Your web strategy should also be a part of your technology updating.
A good example of what could happen if you let your website become outdated is about to surface. On April 21, 2015 Google is set to release changes to how it ranks websites based upon the site’s adherence to newer design technologies. These changes include a switch over to new algorithms that will rank sites higher on their search list if they are designed to be properly viewed on a wide variety of mobile devices and different screen sizes.
The reality is that as much as 60% of web browsing is now done on mobile devices, smartphones, tablets and a wider range of screen sizes. Websites that are not built to accommodate these different devices don’t display content properly, often are not compatible with video and motion formats like Flash and generally are frustrating to use if you are not using a full screen computer.
I am sure you have experienced this frustration while browsing on your smart phone and encountering a website that is just unusable, with jumbled words, screens that don’t scroll and no way to access menu systems or input information in form fields. With 86% of television viewers browsing on smartphones at the same time, you definitely want your site to work properly.
Without getting too technical, current website technology uses responsive web design, dynamic serving and a variety of other technology changes to increase compatibility, sense mobile platform use and correctly display content and enable interaction.
You can test your website using Google’s mobile-friendly testing tool – just Google it for the link. The test will take less than a minute to analyze any website and will provide you with either a green checkmark that the site is mobile-friendly or a list of issues that it finds, like text that is too small or menus that don’t work.
The benefits of making sure that your site is mobile-friendly include faster response times for users and a better user experience with can equate to users spending more time on the site, attracting more page views and increasing your site ranking on search engines, all of which could lead to more business.
The best approach to keeping your site current is to work with experts in website design and site coding. This does not have to be expensive as there are many platforms and templates available that provide the latest tools and technologies.
Steve Cerocke, founder/president of IQ Systems Inc., can be reached at 775-352-2301, ext. 1001, or firstname.lastname@example.org.