SEO, Branding, Design: Tips for Optimizing Your Organization’s Website
When it comes to creating awareness for your organization, your website is one of your most important tools. So we asked our in-house marketing team to share a few simple tips to help you make it as powerful as possible.
To learn more about creating a website, make sure to attend our NextUp Town Hall this Thursday, April 23, at 1 PM. We’ll be talking about social media, ecommerce, website optimization, and more.
SEO and Discoverability
You want people to find your website on Google.
Say that you’re a volleyball club in Connecticut. When someone searches “volleyball clubs in Connecticut,” you want your organization to appear on the page.This is where SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, comes in.
The best way to make sure you’re “ranking highly”—in other words, showing up—is to make sure that the copy on your website represents who you are and what people will find on your site. So you should make sure to put “volleyball club” and “New Jersey” on as many pages as possible.
Link out to other relevant websites.
Another great way to improve your rank is to like out to other websites that are relevant for your “audience”—also known as your customers (or the people you want to be your customers). This can be done by creating a “reference” or “helpful links” page where you can link out to blogs, YouTube pages, or regional/national governing bodies.
So, if you’re a volleyball club in Connecticut, you could link to a YouTube channel with volleyball skills and drills, the USA volleyball website, and so on. The more links you include, the better—but just make sure that they’re actually relevant for the people you want to reach.
Keep your menu bar clear.
Your “menu bar” sits at the top of your website and helps people navigate through your various pages. The clearer you make this bar, the more likely people will be to understand what you offer and why they should be interested in your organization. Best practices say that you should have no more than seven items to choose from in the bar, not including buttons like “Register.”
Below is an example of a great menu bar from one of our partners, ProSkills Basketball, based in North Carolina.
Create clear calls to action.
Calls to action, or “CTAs,” are the buttons and links that help people navigate throughout your site. To come up with CTAs, ask yourself: “what do I want someone who visits my website to do?”
Whether it’s registering for tryouts, viewing schedules, or making payments, you want to make your CTAs very clear. A few ways to make your CTAs stand out are to change your text font or color, put them in their own section at the top of your website (you can see how ProSkills does that above in the yellow banner), or putting them in a pop-up that anybody who visits your site sees immediately.
Below, you can see that our partner Bethesda Soccer Club puts their call to action in a green box so that it’s easy to see.
Just don’t overdo it: you only want to give people two or three actions to take. The more options you give, the less clear it is. Less is more!
It’s important to remember that your website is a representation of organization, your values, and the brand you’ve built. Make sure the colors and the messaging represent what you want the world to know about you.
When it comes to colors, choose two or three that you want to use throughout the site. Sites with too many colors can be overwhelming and difficult to navigate.
Pay attention to font size. Reference other clubs in your area or some of your favorite blogs to make sure that your font feels right—not too big, not too small. You want it to be easy to read but not so big that your site feels like a brochure.
Finally, make sure that the messaging feels authentic to you. It’s okay to keep language casual, but it should still feel professional. If you can, create an “About” page that includes your mission statement—this helps people understand why they should want to be a part of your organization.
Below, you can see how our partner Super Soccer Stars describes their mission. It’s short, sweet, and to the point!