Clean Up Your Digital Act During Your Slow Period

April 23 / Andrew Kopp / filed under Internet Marketing

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Most service-based businesses experience life as a series of booms and slumps, and some have client loads that wax or wane with the season. This is often just the nature of the beast, but for enterprising entrepreneurs who have trouble sitting idle, downtime can easily turn into anxiety and an avalanche of “what ifs”. Keep the dismay at bay and use your pocket of freedom wisely by cleaning up your digital act before all your clients come flocking back.

Spruce Up Your SEO

SEO is crucial. It deserves year-round attention and periodic, intensive reviews to ensure everything is optimized to the utmost degree, but if you don’t have the resources to dive face first into your site as often as you should, you can still make effective tweaks in an afternoon or two. When you suddenly yourself with a hole in your schedule, conduct a 5-minute SEO audit (that’ll probably take you more like an hour or two, but that’s still doable, right?).

In less time than you typically spend on a Monday morning conference call, you can analyze:

  • Your traffic, including search volume, organic search, and how your domain stacks up against your competitors’ in terms of keywords
  • Your search engine results page (SERP) rankings and contributing favors/peripheral elements such as Google sitelinks and business listings
  • More technical aspects that could cause redirects or gaps in your security
  • General aesthetics and the coding behind it
  • Your site’s content and ease-of-navigation
  • Your brand’s social media visibility on SERPs

Update Your Local Listings

Gone are the days when your yellow page listing was the only bit of professional placement you had to worry about. Now your contact information and brand details are everywhere, whether you like it or not. These blurbs – often called local listings – may be potential customers’ very first impression of your brand and too often they lay there utterly neglected. What is that telling people about your commitment to your company and to its consumers?

While you’re catching your breath business-wise, catch up on your listing updates too. Find (or create, if necessary), your brand’s listings on Yelp, TripAdvisor, Facebook, Google, Bing, Angie’s List, LinkedIn, Better Business Bureau, YP.com, Local.com, Foursquare, and beyond and ask yourself the following:

  • Is your contact information included and accurate?
  • Is there a description that’s engaging and informative?
  • Are your social profiles linked?
  • How are the images? Can you improve the photos or add video?

Read Through Your Online Reviews

Depending on the size of your business, you may get just a few reviews a week or a few hundred. Either way, you’re garnering valuable feedback, but it’s only useful if you actually read it. Make yourself a cup of coffee (or a stiff drink), plunk yourself down in front of the computer, and scroll until there is nothing left to read. Take notes on what’s working and what isn’t and respond thoughtfully and genuinely whenever you can.

Feeling overwhelmed? Break your digital to-do list down into bite-sized pieces that can be accomplished whenever there’s a lull in activity. Better yet, contract out to a team of experts. It never hurts to bring in someone who has made stellar SEO and reputation management their mission – you’ll save money, have more time to kick back or concentrate on other projects that need your attention, and the results just might make slow periods a thing of the past.