How is your website working for your business? If it’s not bringing in traffic or sales, it might be time to give your website a health check-up. Here’s 10 common issues that signal your website could benefit from some TLC:
1. Your website is not mobile responsive. Or worse, you don’t know what mobile responsive means. A website that can be viewed on all devices is not optional; it’s essential. In this booming age of smartphones and tablets, non-responsive websites are outdated, annoying to navigate, and severely affect your rank in search results. If your website in not mobile responsive, run, don’t walk, to your nearest, trusted web designer. Read more about mobile responsiveness and Search Engine Optimization (SEO) here.
2. You don’t know what SEO means. If you have never heard of Search Engine Optimization, that’s a red flag that you need help. SEO is an essential component of a successful and effective website. When ranking websites in search results, search engines, like Google, run algorithms to check several factors on your website. Here’s a few examples of factors that contribute to where your website lands on search engine results: website content, mobile-friendliness, website quality (speed to load pages, duplicate pages, broken links, etc), website architecture and geophysical location. More online marketing terms for SMBs here.
3. Your website has no (or minimal) traffic. Your website has very few visitors or the number of visitors is declining. This is most likely related to no SEO or poor SEO practices. Even if your industry is already saturated online (like women’s fashion), there is room for everyone and a little SEO work can go a long way.
4. Your web traffic isn’t navigating past your homepage. If your website has a high bounce rate, your traffic is either clicking the “back” button in the browser, closing the tab, or going dormant. In any case, they aren’t being captivated by your website and there could be a few things happening:
- content is cluttered or hard to read
- content is irrelevant
- there is no Call-to-Action
- your website is attracting the wrong traffic
Whatever the reason, if visitors to your website aren’t moving from the initial place they land, now is a good time for a general website review.
5. Your website isn’t updated regularly. In addition to mobile responsiveness, updates to a website positively contribute to it’s Search Engine Optimization. Regular updates help your website and business get found. If it’s not updated regularly, you will likely notice a decline in web traffic and a drop in your search results rank. If you can’t or don’t know how to make changes to your website, seeking help can get you on the right track.
6. Your website has 404 error pages. These are error messages a visitor will receive when a URL (link) doesn’t exist; either because it was moved or deleted. This can be an annoying and frustrating experience for your web traffic and may send them packing. Search engines, like Google, do not like 404 errors either. This will be reflected on the search engine results page (SERP) with a low rank. A review for 404 error messages and broken links should be part of your regular website maintenance plan.
7. You have trouble finding your own website on search engines. If you can’t find your own website online, how do you expect your customers to find it? Being unable to find your website (without typing the exact business name) means it’s not fully optimized for search engines. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a basic website practice that makes it easier for search engines, like Google, to find your website. There are several things you can do to improve your website’s spot on the search engine results pages and here is a good place to start.
8. Your website was designed by you. Unless you’re a professional designer, designing your own website can be tricky. Web designers have studied the discipline in detail and understand what makes an effective web page. DIY websites can be time consuming, frustrating and can lack the professional polish that comes with hiring an expert. An effective website provides customers with a smooth, user-experience; something a designer has been perfecting for years. If you want your website to work for your business, it’s best to seek out a professional designer.
9. Your website doesn’t have an online marketing plan. Even if it’s basic and simple, every website needs some amount of online marketing. There are both free and paid services to help you market your website. Blogging, social media presence, email newsletters or setup and maintenance of Google tools are all things you can do for free! Without a plan for finding and attracting potential customers, your website may not be as effective as you expected.
10. Your website uses flash intros. Thankfully, flash intros on websites have been on a rapid decline over the last 5 years. “Flash” is a web coding technology (by Adobe) to create animation, like a video, on a website. Firstly, search engines cannot read flash technology. If your website has any flash elements, they are detracting from your “search-ability” (how easy or hard it is to find something online). Secondly, they use a lot of bandwidth and can take a long time to load. If your web developer recommends flash elements for your website, it’s time to get a second opinion.
Your website should be contributing your business. If any of the above 10 signs ring true for you, it’s likely your website could be working harder for your business. Seeking the right help can give your website the refresh it needs to compete in this ever-changing internet world.
Not sure where to start? Webware offers a complete tool-kit to help businesses navigate the internet. Your toolkit includes: a content website or an ecommerce website, blog plus all the digital services your website needs to thrive online.