You can think of your storage website as a static tool meant to drive sales. But if you want to scale your business, you’ll be better prepared to grow if you think of your website as a living, breathing entity. And like all living things, it ages. When this happens, outdated keywords, slow-loading pages, and other factors can negatively affect your search engine optimization (SEO) ranking and authority score.
If your website is well designed and complete, and you haven’t seen any significant drops in rents or ratings, you can assume you don’t need to change anything. However, what works for the site today may not be effective tomorrow. That’s why keeping it up to date should be an ongoing focus and process.
When you consider the countless algorithm updates Google has made to account for users’ ever-evolving search behavior, it really is a full-time job to maintain your auto-storage website. While some updates are minimal, others can have a big impact. When those changes happen, it’s time to take a hard look at your existing content, keyword rankings, and overall design. A thorough audit helps you identify opportunities for improvement. It goes way beyond updating a keyword here and there!
If you’ve worked hard to rank high in the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages), performing routine maintenance on your website’s page and technical SEO can help you maintain a good ranking and support your overall user experience. . If it’s been a while since you’ve completed a website audit, this guide will help you understand what factors to check and how often. By tackling these tasks in small, manageable phases, you can keep your site fresh and competitive in the crowded self-storage industry.
The organic performance of a website is crucial to getting found in the SERP, but what exactly should you focus on when you’re auditing the site’s technical SEO? Common items to keep in mind include:
- 404 and 500 errors
- broken links
- 301 Redirect Chains
- Missing title tags
- Missing meta descriptions
- Image alt text missing
- Compressed images larger than 100 kilobytes
When bots crawl your website, they catalog previous errors, which can negatively affect organic rankings. Some shortcomings are related to user intent, while others are connected to user experience. Both play a crucial role in your storage website’s authority score. Addressing these items on a monthly basis will ensure your site stays healthy.
Regularly updating the back end of your autostorage website will ensure it runs smoothly with the latest software to prevent crashes and maintain security. If your site is hosted with a service like Wix or Squarespace, the updates have likely been made for you. The same is true if you have a WordPress-based site hosted through an agency. (Usually you pay the agency to have their web team keep your site up to date with the latest plugins and security fixes.) If you are the host and are responsible for all updates, make sure to refresh the following items at least every two weeks. : WordPress core and plugins, and server software packages.
Unlike relatively simple and straightforward technical SEO and website updates, updating your self-storage website content is a longer-term process. It can take months for Google and other search engines to fully understand new content, but that doesn’t mean it should be ignored. In fact, technical SEO and content are closely linked. Content encompasses several crucial on-page SEO elements that play a role in the ranking process, such as header tags, keywords, title tags, and meta descriptions.
In addition, the content is the element that gives meaning to your website. Great design helps with the user experience, but content ties that design to your brand message. It should not only be well written, but also optimized to rank for your chosen keywords and satisfy user intent.
When it comes to maintaining your website content, start by inserting additional keywords and performing competitive analysis to identify new keyword strategies. Ideally, you want to post content on your site that’s already optimized, but it’s still smart to audit potential improvements and opportunities on a regular basis.
You can audit your storage content on your own, but you may find it more useful to use a program like Page Optimizer Pro which will quickly review your web pages and provide suggestions based on your competition. Please note that this type of program is an algorithm only, and its recommendations should be taken as long as they do not significantly or negatively interfere with the natural flow, prose, and brand voice of your website.
A competitive analysis
Running a competitive analysis is a great way to isolate website keywords that are used by your auto-storage competitors and could be incorporated into your own content. You can easily find this data with marketing tools like semrush. For example, if other facility operators in your area rank well for “temperature-controlled self-storage units,” you may want to develop content on your site that includes these keywords.
Competitive analyzes also give you the opportunity to look at the design elements that other companies use on their websites. You can then consider whether they could improve the user experience and improve your own site.
one step further
It’s important to keep your website stocked on all fronts, but you can take your updates to the next level by staying up to date with the latest Google algorithm. While not all of the algorithms will apply directly to your business, some might inspire you to change your layout or pages to improve the user experience. Reviewing your site analytics can also shed valuable information on which pages need tweaking.
If your self storage business has seen significant growth in the last year, it’s time to revisit your website. If you’re launching a new website soon, running user tests or heat map tests can help determine where users get confused on their journey through your pages.
Keeping your website up to date is a big task, but you need to be on top of it, lest you leave the site vulnerable to security breaches or a drop in search engine rankings. If you want to keep these responsibilities in-house, designate a few members of your team to handle them. If you prefer to outsource, consider hiring a freelancer who is skilled in web, SEO, and content management, or a professional digital marketing agency. An agency will keep your site up to date and analyze recent major updates from Google to determine if any are affecting your site’s performance.
Whichever route you choose, updating your self storage website isn’t just important for creating an enjoyable digital experience for customers. It also ensures that your digital footprint and your business continue to grow and prosper.
Kara Johnson is a website content specialist for go local interactive, a marketing agency based in Kansas-City. He specializes in developing social media content strategies to help self-storage operators grow their consumer base. His experience includes copywriting, SEO, and social media strategy development. For more information, call 913.689.3170.