Website Do Over – When To Update Your Website

Your website is a valuable tool for promoting and selling goods and services… to your customers.

That’s the thing to remember. Your customers must want to go to your website.

A confusing, hard to navigate site will simply drive users away. This can mean anything from poor navigation prompts, confusing product or service descriptions, and shopping cart sequences that are too difficult to use.

These are just some of the sticking points that can prevent a website from being a fully functional and successful resource for marketing your business.

Therefore, it’s always important to do a review of your website and pay close attention to analytics. Do people stay on your website? If so, how are they engaging with the content? Are some of your lead magnets more popular than others? Do you know who your audience is?

These are all the questions that go into a website review and more. Think of your website as a constantly evolving mainstay in your branding strategy. Updating and improving content will give you an edge over your competition.

Here are some ways to measure your website traffic, analytics and success with your customers. If it’s time for a website do over, start here!

Hello? Anybody Here?

If a tree falls in the forest… If a website floats in cyberspace… You get the idea.

Only a website that’s getting hits is a website that matters. A good way to check daily visitors? The dreaded Google Analytics, which will be mentioned throughout this post. (It’ll be ok, I promise).

Low website traffic is a likely indicator that your SEO strategy sucks. Make sure all your pages contain keywords that users would use to find your business in a search.

Yoast’s SEO plugin for WordPress has a user-friendly setup and helpful tutorials to manage keywords and SEO strategy. Using keywords that correctly identify your business will enable more users to get to your site – thus more traffic.

Where Are They Coming From?

Now that you know how many users are coming to your site, use Google Analytics to track where they are coming from. This is so important, especially when you place paid advertising. If more of your traffic is coming from Twitter, you’re not going to focus advertising on Facebook.

You’ll want to watch the trends that determine what moves traffic to your site. Is there a time of day that is more popular? Are your video ads more popular than text or graphics?

Basically, whatever works to drive traffic, focus on and then do a deeper dive. Who are the people that make up this traffic? Find their interests and their demographic.

What Are They Doing Here?

Once users arrive at your site, what happens? Do they subscribe to your list, download content, go to Live Chat, or click off back into the Interwebz?

This user activity is known as “bounce rate”, defined as the percentage of visitors to a website who navigate away from the site after viewing only one page.

How to improve a bounce rate? Look at your website and evaluate what an ideal user experience would be. What do you want users to do on your website? How can you make your information easier to access and more interesting?

Look at your statistics – a bounce rate higher than 55% (check it on- you guessed it – Google Analytics!) means your website is either totally boring or such a nightmare people run for their lives.

A low bounce rate means your website is either easy to use, interesting, or both. Again, look at trends of the people visiting your website and where they are going. A new product launch, for example, may lower bounce rate as users spend more time shopping.

The goal of a lower bounce rate isn’t to trap users on your site – it’s to pinpoint how your users engage, if at all.

The Electric Kool Aid Acid Test (website)

The reason why we create websites is to draw in business.  That’s why it’s important to have a website that doesn’t look like an acid trip, without the LSD.

Colors and image placement can make or break a website as well as navigation. Are you on the right track? Look at some other websites that get a lot of traffic. What makes their sites appealing to look at and to navigate?

Is your website responsive on other devices? Most people use their cell phones for everything now. It’s important to have a site that’s easy to use across the board.

Check out articles about current trends in web development to make sure your website doesn’t look dated or you’re utilizing yesterday’s technology.

I’m Here… Now What?

From the minute a user arrives, the web copy on your site should be accomplishing the following goals:

  • Our business is…
  • We do this…
  • We are your choice because…
  • We solve these problems…
  • We are offering this to you right now…
  • You are here, so you matter to us! Contact us here…

Do you have your own online store? Well, why should a customer buy from you and not Amazon? State your case, whether it be a unique product or a refund policy.

Are you selling services online? Show your visitors who you are and how your brand can provide superior services in this arena.

Most of all, make sure your web copy is clear and concise. Sites get jumbled from coding and updates, so make sure to proofread your site for errors every so often.

Once your visitors know what you’re about, direct them through your website. Tell the customer how to best utilize your website to gain the most value. Remember, the goal is to make sure a customer engages with your site rather than bouncing out.

SUMMARY

A successful website is a result of multiple parts working together.  Website analysis, clear design, navigation and copy all play into the success of this essential tool for business and online marketing.

Paying attention to the activity of your website will allow you a greater understanding of how to make changes to drive more traffic, sales and ultimately revenue to your business.

Additional Resources

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Cynda Pike is a content creator for Virtual Gurus. Silver hair, black eyebrows. I like medieval killer bunnies, Emily Dickinson and Euripides.

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