As the digital world never stands still, it is important to make sure that you have a healthy website and it continues to work for you – it is the permanent open window into your business after all!
We have probably all seen the ever increasing number of adverts on Facebook and Google, indeed some of us have probably even spent money placing them. However organic search traffic is something we don’t have to keep paying for (apart from our time), as long as we get the fundamentals right and keep your website healthy. So here are my top 5 things that I monitor on a regular basis:
Speed – Presentation – Security – Keywords – Relevance
The download speed of your website is everything and a big part of getting that conversion. Statistics show that 40% of us will abandon a page that takes three or more seconds to load. And just a one-second delay leads to 11% fewer page views and 7% loss in conversions – and it is even worse if viewed on a mobile device!
So, regularly test your website to see how you are performing (Google offers PageSpeed Insights, and GTmetrix is also a good free tool to use). If you see any decrease in speed check to see if you (or your website developer) can improve it by, for example, changing your host, decreasing the size of images on the site, or compressing some of the files.
Could your website do with a fresh design? Is there too much boring text, or no new content, has your home page been the same for months? Visitors are looking for new, relevant, and topical content, so will soon get bored if they don’t see anything different when they visit.
With increasing use of mobile devices for browsing – is your website mobile friendly? Does it have responsive design – that is, does it automatically change the look of the pages according to the device it is being viewed on?
Google has recently updated its search algorithm to show mobile websites higher up in its results – so make sure you use this to your advantage, by ensuring your site can be viewed easily no matter where from.
A secure connection is a must for all websites now, and so if you don’t have https you should consider getting yourself a SSL certificate ( you can ask your website hosting provider for details).
Another of Google’s recent changes is that it has now started to highlight the fact that a visitor doesn’t have a secure connection to your site – you don’t need to give them any excuse to turn away, so get this sorted!
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) can be quite straightforward and even a few tweaks to your keywords can dramatically improve your positioning in the search results. So, have a think about what your visitors may be entering into a search engine to get hold of your site, products and services, and add these keywords to each of your web pages – changing them appropriately for each page.
There are lots of tools out there to help you with this, personally I use Google Analytics, Search Console and Yoast to give me insight into how I can improve my keywords – and I check and tweak regularly.
Lastly, your website has to provide value to your visitors – else why would they bother going there? It needs to show them how you can help, that you understand their problems, and it should be a showcase for your talents – so update it often.
There is nothing wrong with taking a look at your competitors websites – in fact, you should be doing it regularly – they can give you ideas and allow you to spot gaps in the market where you can sneak in and give customers something they cannot get anywhere else!
Ultimately, your website will only work for you if your customers can find it (keywords), access it (presentation, speed and security) and gives them something they need (relevance). So, keep your website healthy and convert those visits to sales! If you would like a chat about this get in touch for a free consultation here.