Keeping your previous family entertainment center customers coming back and finding new ones is tough. Not only is your FEC competing with other centers, it is up against malls, restaurants, bowling alleys and more. And thanks to large screen TVs, the internet and video games, families have more reasons than ever to simply stay home.
This is why your FEC website is so vitally important. It is your best marketing tool and when done right has the potential to super-charge your attendance and significantly increase your bottom line. Too many FECs think that just having a website is enough. What they fail to realize that in today's technology environment, their site must also be fresh, SEO optimized and mobile-friendly. Otherwise there is almost no point in having a website at all.
Fresh, Quality Content
Updating your website with fresh, quality content is a key factor in maintaining current customers and bringing in new ones. Why? Because it shows people that your FEC always has something new and exciting happening. Highlighting a new game or showcasing a new event on your site on a regular basis creates interest and gives past visitors an incentive to return and new visitors a reason to try your FEC for the first time.
Not only does regularly updating your website with new content engage visitors, it makes the search engines happy and can lead to better rankings. This is because Google and Bing consider fresh content more relevant and useful for their users. Websites with out-of-date date or stagnant content often end up buried in the search rankings. This matters because 75% of users never venture past the first page of search engine results.
Search Engine Optimization
Optimizing your website and its content is just as important as adding fresh, unique content on a regular basis. This is because search engine optimization (SEO) is what determines where your website will rank in Google and Bing. This is especially important when you consider the eye-opening fact that 93% of online experiences start with a search engine.
Fresh content is a part of SEO because it not only attracts new visitors but also invites backlinks from other websites. Google and Bing like backlinks because they mean that your site is authoritative, useful and relevant. These are exactly the kinds of websites that receive higher search engine rankings.
Yet fresh content and backlinks are only two of the many signals Google and Bing look for when determining how highly to rank a website and under what keywords. Elements like the number of keywords on a page, navigation structure, URL syntax and dozens more are all a part of SEO and vital to achieving good search engine placements. Without thoughtful SEO a website can end up so far down in the rankings that no one will ever see it.
The era of the mobile web is now upon us. Mobile usage actually overcame desktop usage in 2014 and today accounts for 60% of online activity. So if someone is looking at your website today, then the chances are good that he is on a mobile device and most likely a smartphone.
This means that your website has to render well and load fast on a small screen. Old fashioned websites, such as those developed just a couple of years ago, were designed for large desktop screens. They do not work well on smartphones, or even tablets, because they are not able to respond to the screen size. The result is text that is too small to read, photos that spill off the page, navigation that is too cumbersome and load times that are too slow.
All of this leads to user frustration and high bounce rates (when someone comes to your website and leaves before clicking through to another page). A responsive, mobile-friendly website solves this problem because it is designed from the beginning to look great and load quickly on a smartphone or tablet. This keeps users on the website longer and ensures a positive site experience.
With fresh, unique content, proper SEO and a mobile-friendly design, your FEC website has the power to both entice existing customers to return and to bring in new families excited to enjoy your center. This is the power a modern, well-designed family entertainment center website.