DIY: Updating Your Website

Competing in a fierce global economy has sharpened the focus on most companies’ digital presence, and Nancy is delighted to deliver straightforward, growth-driven marketing solutions to small-medium sized manufacturers.

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Transcript (excerpt)

Thanks for joining us today for do-it-yourself updating your website I’m Nancy O’Leary I’m part of the team here at custom direct we’re a marketing agency that’s focused on building sustainable growth for manufacturers and industrial companies that support manufacturing. One of the questions that we get often asked is how do I improve my website performance. We haven’t really done a lot of updating to it and we’re not really sure where to start and really it could be a very overwhelming topic so our goal today is to make this very straightforward and easy to follow. So let’s just Jump Right In. What we’re going to be covering today we’re going to talk about the curb appeal of your home page. Yes, the curb appeal of your home page we’re going to discuss the navigation that really engages your visitors and keeps them on your website we’re going to talk about the biggest secret to website traffic and it’s your content and last but certainly not least we’re going to touch on when it might be helpful to get some help. But let’s be positive and move forward. The curb appeal of your home page you get one chance to make a great first impression and make sure that you make it count and by that we mean your logo should be really clearly visible it’s very common to have a logo that perhaps has been around for decades depending on how long your company has been in existence and over time that logo might have been reproduced numerous times and maybe what you’ve got on your website isn’t the cleanest version. Or it might be hard to read some of the words particularly if you have a tagline. It’s really important to make sure that your logo is crisp and clean and equally important make sure that what you do is clearly visible right at the top of your website when folks land even if your logo is self-explanatory it talks exactly about what you do never underestimate the importance of having your core competency right at the top. We call that above the fold it’s kind of an old school throwback to newspapers. And, of course, all the most important headline information was above the fold same true with your website. While more than half of the website searches now occur on cell phones or on a tablet it’s still important to keep that mindset in that for folks that are looking at your website on a desktop and anything that they find on that top half or top third of your website is critically important to understanding what you do. Last but certainly not least we strongly recommend to shy away from having long videos or a carousel of images right at the top of your website those are definitely some Design Elements which have come into favor and have come out of favor and really what we’re starting to find from a user experience is that folks really get distracted by all that movement and then they tend to not pay attention to your core competency and most importantly they tend to leave fairly quickly rather than remaining engaged on your website. There’s certainly a time and a place for that kind of content we recommend further down on your home page or even on an about page or maybe it’s even one of your capabilities pages but we’d recommend thinking twice about if you’ve already got video right at the top of your website think about this might be the time to replace it with perhaps a single image with a very bold statement about exactly what you do to leave nothing to chance for that person visit using your website for the first time.

Let’s draw in some before and after. Sometimes you know a picture is worth a thousand words. Here’s an example of a website that while they had the best of intentions really there was a lot going on and then on the other hand not a lot going on when it came to really understanding and explaining what this company did this company builds modular elevators and those are those building block type elevators that can be incorporated within a building or on the outside of say um a stadium. And so while the um information that they had on their home page seemed to resonate um internally within the company they were finding a very high bounce rate people really weren’t engaging with their website at all and they had this incredible video that you can see right in the middle. Problem was nobody was sticking around long enough to watch the video they didn’t necessarily understand at a glance what this company did and so by contrast by completely transforming their website and especially taking care to look at their home page knowing that when folks landed they had to understand immediately what this company did the focus remained on ensuring again right at the top you know that above the fold a clean easy to read navigation what this company did they make elevators and they make it very easy and then really their four pillars the things that the company is most well-known for are these four areas there.

Presenter's bio

Nancy O’Leary
Custom Direct, Inc.

Nancy grew up in manufacturing. Her father, Lou, was a plastics mold engineer, and she learned to spell polypropylene and polystyrene before learning times tables in school. The highlight of their annual family trip to Brookfield Zoo was the selection of that year’s plastic molded animal.

Yes, there were all of those cool live animals at the zoo, yet Nancy was more excited about the plastic one because with each plastic molded animal came a full explanation from Lou on how the mechanics of the mold worked, how many plastic pellets were required — and most importantly, how the design could be enhanced by making seemingly small adjustments to the original concept.

From these experiences, and so many more from walking the shop floor on Saturday mornings with Lou, Nancy learned to appreciate not only the finished manufactured product, but the tremendous planning and expertise required to make it.

Today, there are over 12 million manufacturing jobs in the United States. Nearly 600,000 U.S. manufacturing companies are providing opportunities for people looking to support their family, build a career, or even begin a company of their own.

Competing in a fierce global economy has sharpened the focus on most companies’ digital presence, and Nancy is delighted to be part of the Custom Direct team since 2017, delivering straightforward, growth-driven marketing solutions to small-medium sized manufacturers. In 2022, the Custom Direct team delivered $3.25 million in bottom-line impacts for 28 manufacturers, within a single program.

In her spare time, Nancy is heavily involved in promoting manufacturing careers to the next workforce generation. Her experience in high school recruiting and developing grant funding initiatives provides a knowledgeable, passionate voice for workforce recruitment programs.