You may have an amazing, up to date website that is working brilliantly for you, but the fact you clicked on this blog post suggests to me that you feel there is room for improvement! Here are five ways your website could be improved and the reasons why.
It’s very obvious these days whether a website is secure or not. If it is, you will see a little padlock icon in the address bar next to the URL or web address. If it’s not it will say “Not Secure” instead.
If your website isn’t secure it will be affecting three things:
There is a simple fix which is to purchase an SSL certificate. They are inexpensive and your web designer, developer or web host will be able to give you guidance on this.
Accessibility is another thing that search engines are hot on. One bug bear of mine is seeing images used for headings on websites instead of actual text. People get lovely graphics created with their heading over a photo of themselves which are great for social media but not your website. Text readers can’t read images so if you have someone who is visually impaired coming to your website, the key headlines aren’t being read out to them. Those headings probably also contain your keywords and they can’t be read by search engines, so again you are affecting your SEO. An easy fix for this is to employ a web designer to recreate the look you want from these graphics using actual text over images.
When people come to your website they want it to load quickly. If a website takes a little time to load initially people are generally OK with that, although the quicker the better. What people don’t want is to have to wait for every page to load. They will soon get frustrated and leave your website. To find out how to test your website’s speed performance and some tips on speeding up your sluggish site, check out this blog post, Speeding up Your WordPress Website. The post has been around for a while but it’s still a good guide to follow.
It is frequently quoted these days that more than 50% of website browsing is done on mobile devices now. I personally rarely use a computer to go online. I expect every website to be able to work on mobile. If I come across a website that doesn’t, I find it very frustrating and many people feel the same. Any good web designer/developer will design and build a website mobile first these days and if you are going the DIY route, a decent website builder will allow you to view and adjust how your website is going to look across devices.
The design of your website should mean that everything is clear, easy to read and obvious where your website visitor will find what they are looking for. Your content should be equally clear, telling anyone who finds your website how you can help them. Your whole website should be engaging, reflect you and your business and also make your ideal client want to work with you. We go into more detail about website design rules in our blog post, Website Problems and The Solutions. We also have three resources that help with writing content: our Get a Website That Works for You email challenge, our Customer Avatar Worksheet and our Website Content Planning Worksheet.
It really is important to get your website right and keep it up to date with relevant content because it is there to sell what you do. As Ian Dickson himself has said, “Your website is your online sales person.” You don’t want your online sales person to be hard to find, a bit slow to respond, look dated, slightly untrustworthy and not sure how to find things, do you?
Bio: Judith Wharton
Jude has been running 2nd Floor with her husband, Chris, since 2010 and in 2019 they launched Ready Steady Websites® to cater to the needs of those who want a truly professional looking and functioning website on a smaller budget.