As we start a new year, this is always a time when resolutions and goals are being set. Below are four simple website improvement tips to help start your website off on the right foot this year.
1. Check The Speed Of Your Website
How snappy is your website? How a user experiences your website has become a very important factor in the quality score Google gives your site, which in turn affects your rankings. This goes much deeper than simply how fast your pages load, but it is still a great place to start when performing any type of website audit.
Two free, easy-to-use tools are Pingdom’s Website Speed Test and GTMetrix. Simply visit either of those pages, enter the URL you want to check, and they will analyze your site and give you quite a bit of data to show how it is performing. They also offer paid plans if you wish to get even more in-depth data analysis.
What most people don’t realize is that there’s more than one way to gauge your website’s performance quality. A lot of people are talking about page load speed only, while others are talking about Online Marketing Optimization (OMO) or Search Engine Optimization (SEO) site speed as a whole.
The latter is much more important than the former. For example, if you have an ecommerce site, you definitely want to make sure that it not only loads fast, but that its checkout process is fast as well. A slow checkout process will cause a lot of potential customers to abandon their carts and you to lose out on sales.
Take an hour or two to get some actual data on how your page speed performs so at least you have a baseline metric to compare to over time. If you find your website is scoring very poorly and need some help optimizing it, feel free to reach out to us at email@example.com. We would love to guide you through that process.
2. Don’t Be Scared of Google Analytics – Embrace It
Google Analytics is a powerful tool because it allows you to gather a lot of information about your website’s traffic and audience, but it can be quite daunting at first. Don’t let the data overwhelm you, though – there are many ways to use Google Analytics to your advantage. The tracking options provided by Google Analytics are extensive, and at the same time fairly simple to use. The key is knowing how to make the most of what Google Analytics has to offer without wasting too much time or effort in the process.
The advantage of taking the time to really learn Google Analytics is that it will empower you to make better-informed decisions for your website moving forward. You’ll know what is working and be able to recognize when something isn’t. If you’re interested in digging deep, we recommend checking out what’s available on YouTube – beyond that, you could purchase a course on something like Udemy. Don’t waste the data that you have at your fingertips because it looks overwhelming. Dive right in and learn how to master it.
3. Update Old Website Content
It’s so easy to let content become stale on your website after a few years. In all honesty, how many different ways can you say the same thing about the services you provide or the products you manufacture? However, every business changes each year – whether it’s new products or services, you’ve got something different to offer.
A great place to start is to determine what content is currently performing the best on your website. This is where the majority of visitors are learning about you and this tells you what they are interested in. Once you’ve found those, use the steps below to see if there is anything you can do to possibly provide visitors even more value:
- Is there any of the content you can link to other pages on your site? That could be products, pages, or blog posts.
- Review the Call To Action on that page. Is it still up-to-date or could you update it a bit to match your current marketing goals?
- Is there any additional information you can add to increase the value of the page moving forward? This could be additional product features or services that you are now offering that you weren’t before.
4. Make Backups, and Backup Those Backups
This one seems obvious, right? However, the number of times businesses don’t have good backups of their websites is more common than we ever initially would have thought. If you’re sitting there today and don’t have good backups of your site, don’t worry – below are a few suggestions to get you started.
Hosting Service Backups
Depending on the type of web hosting you have, your provider might have an easy built-in solution that you can use. One of our customers uses a Managed WordPress hosting account from Dreamhost to get automatic nightly backups of their entire site, and has the ability to login and click one button to backup their site.
Third Party Backup Service
Our go-to backup service over the past few years has been BackBlaze. They offer additional services where they can actually mail you your data if something catastrophic happens. And with the “pay as you go” model, the cost will grow naturally with you as you have more to back up.
Implementing a solid backup strategy can be quite annoying sometimes, but trust me, after working with clients who don’t have good backups..it is worth the time and money when disaster strikes.
Your website is extremely important in building confidence in potential customers, as well as maintaining your long-standing ones. Make it a resolution this year to not leave your websites out in the cold to freeze. Need help? Feel free to reach out if we can help you make these improvements on your website.