25 Aug 6 Must Ask Questions for Maintaining Effective B2B Websites
You’ve asked the question, or one of your employees has: who’s responsible for _______ on the website? Maybe it’s updating the staff page or changing out pictures on the home page or adding new products and services. These changes happen occasionally rather than daily, but how to do you manage changes on a more frequent basis?
What needs to be accomplished?
What are all the tasks that need to be accomplished with your website?
- Updating home page photos
- Adding photos to project galleries
- Posting blogs
- Updating staff pages
- Adding new products and services
- Creating landing pages and new downloadable content
- Updating vendor catalog content
Your company may have a few less or many more objectives when it comes to your website. When you list out all the items you need to have updated, you’ll have a better idea of how much work maintaining your site entails.
When does it need to be updated?
You may just need to change out your home page photos every month or even every quarter. If you have low turnover in staff, those pages may only need updating every six-twelve months. Blog and project photos will need to be updated even more regularly. For every item on your website maintenance list, give a timeframe for when it needs to be updated.
How much will your B2B website host do?
Here’s the major question most B2B companies ask about their website. If you don’t know who updates your site or how it’s updated, you must find out this information. Go back to the company you hired to build your B2B website and look over the contract you likely signed. Are some site changes included in your building or hosting fees? If not, someone within your company should have been trained to update the site. If that person has left your company, contact your host and ask if they will train someone else within your company to make those updates. If you are launching a B2B inbound marketing campaign, you’ll want to know what pieces your staff will be responsible for and what your inbound marketing agency will cover as well. If you agency didn’t create the site, they may need an introduction to your hosting company.
Who will do the work?
Once you know what your hosting company will update, assign the appropriate tasks to that company. Make someone within your company responsible for contacting the host, sending them the right information and following up to make sure the changes were made. Be very specific about the changes and you can ask for a timeline of how long it will take to make those changes. Some companies make changes in 48 hours, other take up to two weeks. For the tasks that need to be handled in-house, assign it to someone with a deadline. You and I both know tasks that aren’t assigned will never been completed. Give someone ownership and hold them accountable.
How do you follow up?
As an inbound marketing agency, Momentum Consulting manages a variety of websites. For most of our clients, we make all the website changes because they just don’t have the time or in-house resources. We use Basecamp to assign tasks to members of our team. We can then check to make to sure those tasks are completed. We can also share to-do lists with our clients where they can add tasks for our team as well. Most of our clients prefer to email those requests to us. We then create a to-do on our basecamp list and assign it to a specific person with a deadline for completion.
What about new website projects?
Keeping in touch during a new website project is integral to the success and timeliness of your project. Ask your B2B website design company for a timeline of when specific parts of the project will be completed. Also ask what information they will need from you and when they will need it. If your design company is held up for two weeks waiting on pictures from your company, that can throw off the timeline in a major way. You can use the same process outlined above to designated what pieces of the project your website development company will be responsible for and what you need to assign to an in-house contact. (Hint: that contact does not always have to be you, but someone you trust.)
Maintaining your website takes time and some dedicated effort. It’s easy to take a new website and just let it go then two years later realize all the content is out of date. Your website plays an important part in your overall B2B advertising plan. Keeping your site updated improves your ranking with search engines and tells your customers you are still open for business.