Updating your website without hiring a web designer can feel like a huge task, and honestly, there are some things you can do, and some things you should leave to the professionals. But, updating your health coach website on your own is doable and I want to help you get there if you don’t have the budget for hiring a web designer right now!
Most website builders don’t require you to write code, and there’s a lot of drag and drop builders you can use. It’s all about rearranging what you’ve got on your pages into a nice sales flow, adding some refreshing new elements and giving the whole website a once over.
Warning: before you start…
Know what kind of website you are running. Is it something that has previously been custom built for you? Then you might find there are too many limitations, and could throw bugs and errors that break your site because of the custom code. So it’s not a great idea to interfere too much here.
If you are using WordPress self hosted, or another platform that gives you drag and drop builders and themes like Elementor, TagDiv etc then you can go ahead and do some tweaks on your own.
Here are some of my pointers on easy website updates you can do without hiring a web designer.
Start with a full backup
Take a full backup of your site, and make sure the backup works before you start changing anything on your site. This includes updating any themes or plugins too! This is because if something goes wrong you can just reinstate your backup like it never happened!
Trust me, without a proper backup, you’ll lose your current site forever, so make sure it sticks.
The #1 rule = test everything
Not only should you test everything you edit, create, or change on your website, but you should also test everything before you start (and it’s really an update in itself.)
This means you should be checking:
- All images are loading
- That there are no broken links or links that are throwing 404 errors on the site
- Contact information is correct
- Any cart flows e.g. with online stores, make a purchase and refund it back to you.
- Your mailing list or opt-in flow is working
- Are all plugins and themes up to date? This is very common with WordPress – if your website was updated but the plugin doesn’t support the newest update, it might misbehave if you start to make changes.
Refresh your images to match your branding
There’s no better way to give your website a fresh feel than with updating all or at least most of the images on your website. When doing so, make sure they are still in keeping with your overall branding, particularly if you have fine tuned it since you created your website. One option is to have a photo shoot and use your own photos instead of relying on stock photos to make it more personal.
Tech Tip: Make sure all your photos are well optimised so they load quickly, and that they have alt text on them to help search engines and screen readers make sense of them.
Consistent copy is key
Check your whole copy for inconsistencies. As time goes by, your voice and tone will change, and the longer you leave your old copy up, the greater the differences between your current voice and the one that’s on your website.
Some pages that should be rewritten regularly include your services page, about page and contact page. These are the most commonly visited pages, so should be on top of your priority list for regular updates.
Add (new) testimonials
Social proof is one of the best advertisements that you are doing a great job, so hunt down some testimonials from your clients. You don’t necessarily have to add a whole separate page for the testimonials, but regularly refreshing testimonials will help build trust and keep things current to the type of services you’re providing right now.
Show video proof
Include a video on part of your website where it makes sense. For example, your About page. The most recent statistics show that businesses that use video get more qualified leads and better brand awareness, something that’s crucial in the world of wellness. After all, you want to stand out from everyone else.
Videos help visitors get a good sense of what they can expect from your sessions, since you’re not just a smiling static image anymore, but a living, breathing person behind your brand.
Update blog posts
Go through all your blog posts and find those that contain information that’s out of date. Instead of making a new post with updated info from scratch, give these kinds of posts a little love and update it with the newest information. This is a very common way that businesses keep their blog posts fresh as time goes by, because your old blog posts already have an established position on search engines as well as authority.
Top Tip: Too many blog posts to do them all? Update your best performing ones, as well as the ones that have most to do with your core business or service. You can add more depth and length to them so they’ll improve their SEO ranking.
Integrate a social feed
An Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter feed on your website will help you to have something that is always fresh. It instantly gives the impression to visitors that you’re active and online frequently, plus it encourages them to follow you there as well.
Building a following on social media helps with retention of visitors for your website, and makes them more likely to come back and view you again. A word of warning though, these kinds of social feeds can be very distracting so consider where you place them carefully. You don’t want them anywhere near your main conversion locations like near newsletter opt-ins, pricing pages or other CTAs. The sidebar of your blog posts is always a good option!
Have a FAQ section
A frequently-asked-questions (FAQ) section is a great update to your website and shows experience. Besides the obvious benefit of having the answers to most common visitors questions, it’s also great for SEO since you will be ranking your website for the exact questions and phrases your visitors use to find someone like you.
The FAQ page also helps with new website updates, especially if you have done some big changes, which you can address and explain in the section. For example, if you decided to pivot your business a little and you have dropped some of your services, you can add this to the FAQ section too and explain your reasoning behind it.
Know the right time to do a website update
This part is trickier than you might imagine! First of all, if you are not already doing it, you should start treating your website as a living thing – websites are evolving just as your brand and business are. You can’t afford to stay in one place or your competitors will surpass you.The same is true for your website – if you just leave it as is, it starts feeling stale, dull, even old.
So, how do you know the best time to update your website? Your website needs an update when:
- The tech side of things are outdated – for example the design isn’t responsive or mobile friendly
- You’ve outgrown the template you’re using and need more elements – you want to add custom elements not support by the current website design template
- You’re pivoting your brand and targeting a new market – and you need new copy, images, or colour schemes.
- Your bounce rate is too high and the current design just doesn’t click well with your visitors.
Just doing a refresh on the design without considering your target audience and your clients will bring more harm than good. Instead of guesstimates, rely on actual data that will tell you what needs to change, and how.
Ask customers or visitors in a survey on social media or on your home page what they think about your website, what they like most, what they dislike.
The changes that you do should always be based on those responses. For example, visitors and clients might indicate in their feedback that it’s really hard to find your contact information. This is a clear sign to put your contact info more front and centre.
This also means that even if you really like a new change you did, but your clients don’t, then you should revert it, as much as it pains you. This is the true meaning of the customer (or in this case visitor) is always right.
Website updates don’t have to be scary
If you haven’t done a website update in a while, it’s about time to do one, and then regularly update all the tiny bits and pieces to keep it fresh. If you’re unsure where to start, you can contact me today and I’ll help you with your update and teach you how to do it on your own in the future.