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You’ve worked hard to build your website from the ground up. The number of visitors grows everyday, and engagement across your social media platforms looks good. After all the hours tweaking and experimenting, you’re ready to relax and take a vacation.
But, you start to ask yourself questions. Will people stop coming to my website if I’m gone? Will my content become stale? Do I need to make sure my hotel has excellent wi-fi so that I can post status updates? Now you’re concerned that taking time off could hurt your website.
There is no need to worry. Going on vacation doesn’t mean your website will. Yes, Google checks on how active your website is daily, and lack of engagement leads to lower rankings. However, you can prevent this problem by doing a few things that keep your content fresh. Here are ten ways to update your website while you’re on vacation.
Image via Flickr by tamakisono
If you’re going away for a week, a quick way to add fresh content is to update pages on your website. Update your terms of service if it looks out of date. Maybe your homepage needs to promote a new product or an upcoming sale. Try adding a new question and answer to your FAQ page. Is your about page missing information? Making small additions shows Google that your website is still active.
If you’re not already doing this for your website, scheduling your blog posts in advance helps — even when you’re not on vacation. It saves you the time it takes to upload, especially if you have other important deadlines coming up. WordPress allows you to schedule when a blog post goes live as far ahead as you need it. It’s a great way to plan content around holidays or special events. And if you need a freelancer to create blog posts for you, CopyPress is a content company that can help you out.
Now that you know about scheduling blog posts, it’s time to schedule your social media posts in advance. Tools such as Buffer and Hootsuite not only let you plan when your messages go out, they analyze data such as how many people clicked a link or shared your message. They also give you the option to bulk schedule, which makes it easier to update all your social media accounts.
Just because you’re away from the office doesn’t mean your subscribers have to know. If you send weekly newsletters (and you should), schedule an update about an upcoming event. They’ll still get their weekly newsletter, and you don’t have to worry about crafting one while on vacation.
If you don’t have any updates coming up, adding a pop-up box to your homepage informs people you’ll be right back. Even if there’s no new content created, it shows you’re still dedicated to your website. Add an incentive, such as a coupon or a free e-book, in exchange for their email address. It’s a way to thank them for their patience. Just make sure that you don’t leave the pop-up box for too long, or it’ll look like you’re never coming back.
A landing page is useful when a vacation lasts longer than one week. Instead of letting people wonder when to expect new content, you can explain that you’re away and add a counter that shows when new information will be available. Visitors who see it will know what date to come back, which makes them more likely to return. They don’t have to check your website daily until they become frustrated and give up. An incentive is good here also, and you can collect email addresses while you’re gone.
Image via Flickr by jcorrius
Do you work with a team or use a freelance virtual assistant? Let them have the reins to your website while you’re on vacation. If you don’t want a landing page because you’re worried people won’t come back, give a worker permission to add various types of content, such as a video or photos. It also helps to have someone check the website’s plugins, which keeps your website up-to-date and secure.
Do you have blog posts that are a few months or even several years old? Update old blog posts and re-publish them. If you made a list post, check to see if the items are still relevant. Perhaps you wrote a review on a product. Are you still using it? Let readers know. Before you go on your vacation, update and schedule a couple of blog posts. Google likes when you add content to a post, and visitors stay on your website longer to read the update.
Want to add fresh content and connect with a new audience? Open your website to accepting guest post positions. This task takes a little time in advance to plan, but it’s worth your while to find someone who is in your field and able to write a great post for you. The best part is they’ll let their readers know about your website, bringing in new traffic.
Are you using an app to automatically publish to your social media accounts? Add your tweets or posts to your website using a widget. There are lots of plugins through WordPress that show your latest posts. Regular updates show Google and other search engines that your website is still putting out content.
Keeping a website updated is crucial. Losing visitors hurts and, with more people using the internet each day, you should stay in the game. This is a small list of things to do. Start with these methods to keep your visitors and continue ranking well with Google.