Great writing is not the only content you can use to make your website a success and give your business a boost. You can also find plenty of tools and resources online that will help you to bring people to your website, and convince them to come back, by enabling you to produce and manage useful, interesting content, and to provide your customers with services that set your business apart.
1. GatherContent for Content Management
Producing effective content for your website is an important part of helping your business to grow, but it can be just as important to find tools to manage the content that you already have, and to ensure that your new content is fitting in and fulfilling your needs. Managing a successful website requires a lot of organisation, so anything that can make it easier to keep track of all your content can be helpful, particularly if your business is growing or you are redeveloping large chunks of your website.
GatherContent is a convenient way of doing this. You can see an overview of all your content, drag and drop items into the right place as you decide how your site will be structured, collaborate with colleagues and monitor everyone’s progress. It is particularly useful if you have a lot of pages to create, or if you want a space where you can bring together contributions from different people. Once you are ready, you can export everything to your CMS to be uploaded to your website.
2. DesignCrowd for Web and Graphic Design
Getting your site to look good and function perfectly is essential if you want to convince customers to trust your company and spend money on your products. Although many small businesses start with a site that they have built themselves, if you are planning to grow your business, it can be a good idea to invest in some professional web and graphic design in order to make your online presence as professional as possible. A professionally designed website can be tailored to your business and to your target audience to a greater degree than a site that has been built using a ready-made template. Commissioning your own graphics or logo design can help you to create a unique, recognisable brand image that you can use across all of your marketing material. You can decide what message you want to convey. Meanwhile, an experienced designer who understands how people interact with online content could make a big difference to the length of time visitors spend browsing your website, the number of pages they visit, the likelihood that they will make a purchase, and the chances that they will return in the future.
One of the best resources for businesses looking to hire this kind of talent is DesignCrowd. You can post a design brief describing what you are looking for, whether it is a logo, website, t-shirt or poster design. Designers from around the world will then compete for the job, sending you their work so that you can provide feedback, receive revisions, and ultimately select a final design. Once you are satisfied, you pay the successful designer, and download a copy of your chosen design. The process can give you a wide range of choices, with many briefs attracting over a hundred different designs. It also allows you to recruit designers to help with any creative projects.
3. Hootsuite for Social Media
Social media marketing is a great way to spread the word about your business and communicate with your customers, but creating and managing this content can be tricky, particularly when you want to make a marketing campaign work across many different platforms. Luckily, there are some great resources that can help you to keep your message consistent and to analyse your successes so that you can keep your audience, and business, growing.
Hootsuite can publish content across multiple platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn, giving you a single dashboard to control all your accounts. It also offers some useful analytical and monitoring tools to help you to develop a successful approach and find out what other people are saying about you online. Managing your growing reputation and social media presence is much easier when you have these sorts of tools available.
4. Storify for Content Curation
Content curation can be an effective way of making your website into the first stop for customers who are looking for more information about specific topics or for clients associated with a particular industry, helping to boost your reputation as a knowledgeable and reputable brand as you grow. It is not a substitute for original content, but it can work well alongside it in order to keep people on your website, and to create a regular readership. It works by gathering informative, entertaining or otherwise relevant material from a variety of different sources and presenting it in a convenient format. Sourcing and organising this material, while ensuring that the content producers are being acknowledged and treated fairly, used to require a great deal of work, but there are now some useful tools available that can help you to locate and curate your chosen types of content.
Storify is a great way to curate web content into a compelling story. It helps you to find and bring together images, videos, and other content relevant to your chosen topics from any public webpage, including social network posts. You can then add your own commentary before embedding the resulting stories on your website, or linking to them on your social media accounts. Providing people with the latest updates on relevant stories while sharing your own insights on them can be a great way to strengthen your position in a particular sector.
5. Mojo Helpdesk for Relationship Management
Web tools and content that offer visitors the chance to interact with your website can be very effective. They range from simple tools, like Kumquat, for gathering feedback, to useful appointment scheduling tools like Appointlet, which can sync with your Google Calendar. The most complete customer relationship management tools can enable you to include a full helpdesk service as part of your web content, while also helping you to keep track of customer orders, questions and other communications. Having a system in place to handle these types of interactions can be particularly useful if you are growing your business, since it will ensure that you can handle increasing numbers of sales and customer contacts.
Incorporating Mojo Helpdesk into your website can give visitors to your site an easy way to seek help, which can make handling growing numbers of orders easier for you, as well as increasing customer satisfaction. You can provide instant access to answers by creating a searchable knowledge database including the solutions to common problems, as well as giving people the chance to raise issues with you if they still need more help. Unanswered questions will be flagged for your attention, and you can monitor the progress of problems that are still in the process of being addressed. You can even customise the appearance of the helpdesk so that it fits in with the rest of your content.