8 Steps to Increase Traffic to Your Website: Part Four
So what happens when you’ve installed the full suite of industry-standard analytics tools, conducted in-depth keyword research and made that all-important audit of your website? Do you need to refresh or rebuild your website?
Most likely you will have found that your website has a lot of flaws. Even if you’ve spent a lot of money on the design, you may have chosen a web design company that hasn’t got a clue about information architecture, keyword and content strategy.
The most beautiful websites may be just that – very good looking but poor performing in search and not particularly easy for the user.
There are so many issues that your website audit will have flagged up that you may be a bit worried to start with. Well…
The first thing to remember is that your audit may have flagged up a lot of issues that aren’t really a big issue. They may be “low hanging fruit” such as you need to enable GZIP compression on your webserver and, voila, you’ve just nailed 500 issues on your “to do” list.
Other problems may be non-secure links, your WordPress site isn’t set up correctly etc etc. There are SO many things that can be wrong with your website but just look at the website objectively.
1. Ascertain if Small Fixes Alone Will Fix Your Website
Is this just a regular long-term Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) job? Do you have to do daily tasks every day to stay on top of the issues?
Good, then keep doing SEO. You will reap the rewards of your hard work. If you get stuck and don’t now where to start or go next then ask us about our SEO services.
You may have a massive laundry list of technical issues that you have to systematically plough through. Once you’ve got to the end of that list your website will still look good but function and perform well too.
However, if small and regular technical SEO fixes alone wont help your website then you may need to look at the next level. Does your website need a refresh?
2. Does Your Website Need a Refresh?
Is there something more than on-page SEO that is needed to boost your website’s performance?
Has your SEO guy (or girl) optimised all the images, title tags and descriptions? Has he or she tweaked the copy and consulted your in-house writers on how to produce great copy?
If it looks perfect but goes slowly have you moved to a new webserver?
Great. But what if your website is five years old now?
Is your design looking a bit tired? Do visitors show up and say “Ugh, that looks a bit 2014″ and you get a massive bounce rate?
Sometimes the fact that your site design is a few years old may the biggest problem. In the last few years there has been a real push towards making websites work better on mobile devices. Only in 2015 did Google say that websites should work on mobile or risk sliding down the rankings. In April that year they started taking mobile-friendly websites as a “ranking signal”. So if you didn’t keep up with that memo than maybe that’s why you’ve suffered.
One thing that can really help, especially with modular Content Management Systems (CMS) like WordPress is that you can search for and install a new template or theme. These days just a template refresh alone can make a big difference.
But sometimes it takes more than that. A template switch could break your content so you need to do your research, test thoroughly and be as sure as you can before you go live.
3. Does Your Website Need a Rebuild?
If a refresh doesn’t work and new templates make your site look really ugly then there must be something fundamentally wrong with your website’s build.
Maybe it’s time to have a really good look at it and make the decision to get right up to speed with the twenty first century.
Is your website designed for mobiles first and then tablets and desktop computers? Is it easy to navigate? Is everything easy to get to? Does your site load quickly? Are the images fresh and appealing? Can visitors easily get in touch? Is the whole User Experience (UX) an absolute breeze?
Then this is when you need to seriously sit down and decide what you want to do to drive your business forward.
Decide on your structure, the information architecture. Make your website as logical and easy to navigate as your local library. Because that’s all it is ultimately – A well-organised repository of information.
It may be full of pretty pictures, videos, audio and downloads too but you want your website to reflect your business, present it in the best light and be an excellent experience for your users.
Rip it up and start again works for many websites. Otherwise it can be just like putting lipstick on a pig.
Rebuilding websites can be hard work if you’re not sure about it. But if you consult with Clever Marketing we will let you know whether you need regular SEO, a refresh or a complete website rebuild. We’ll advise on how to structure your website, what content to create or revise and our designers and developers will make it look good and feel good too.
All of these tasks are a serious undertaking so you have to get each one of them right. That’s where our Hampshire digital agency can do the heavy lifting for you and we are happy to do your SEO & PPC, and be your designers and developers.
We are a full-service digital agency with a track record of success so feel free to tap in to our many years of professional expertise.