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Practice What You Preach – Updating Websites

posted on May 8, 2018
General Programming

I remember sitting in on a European history lecture at UW-Oshkosh back in 2004.  The topic for the discussion was the fall of the Roman Empire, but my memory primarily recalls a tangential discussion on Roman roads.  It gets better – the thing that I remember to this day 14 years later was the point that the professor was trying to make about the inevitable march toward the dark ages because the peoples that ruled after the fall of Rome allowed Roman infrastructure to crumble.

If you don’t maintain your infrastructure, your empire will fall.

Believe it or not, this is incredibly relevant to proper website management in the modern era.   The current mantra suggests that if you do nothing but let a website sit, you should be replacing it after two years.  Proper maintenance will extend that lifetime another three years or more!  Five whole years with one piece of technology, i.e. one website structured the same way, is amazing when you think of it with phones and other devices being cycled regularly every two years.

Nobody is immune – not even companies like Stellar Blue Technologies who make websites.  And so, we’re practicing what we preach!  These are the top three changes we’re making, and why they’re important.

  1. Motion – We’ll be restructuring our home page with more animated items. This could be a short flight from a drone or an animation from a 360 video shoot. It’s not only a great way to feature the cutting edge work that we’re doing, but it also aligns with current trends in media consumption.  On Facebook alone the algorithm promotes content as follows with the first item being promoted most, and the last being promoted least: live streaming –> embedded video –> photo album –> single photo with content –> content with a link (even to YouTube video) –> content with no multimedia.
  2. Fresh Content – We’re putting out a blog each week. This offers something new for our clients to consume, but it also tells the Google Algorithm that we’re maintaining our website.  We’re also adding fresh videos under each of our services that showcase department leads explaining what their team can do for you.  This is all about customer satisfaction.  We react better when we can visualize the person that we’re working with.
  3. Total scrubbing – We’re combing every page to standardize writing styles, correct outdated information or errors, and eliminate anything that isn’t relevant any more. As time ticks by, it’s tasks like this that get put on the backburner for so long.  While we’re doing this we’re also updating the metadata on the back end of each page. Metadata is that crazy thing that allows search engines to confirm that the material on a website is actually what you say it is.  It’s a convoluted idea, but good metadata means the difference between showing up at the top of page 1 or the top of page 2 or later…

So, what have YOU been doing to keep your website fresh?  If it’s overdue for a facelift, let us know.

We’ve been there, too.  We can help.  

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