A strong digital presence starts with a strong website, which is easier said than done. There are many factors that play into designing, developing, managing, and growing a website for your company, so we’ve rounded up just a few tips to improve your site from a design, content, and SEO perspective.
Keep it simple, Steve. (I’m sure we’re all familiar with the actual meaning of the acronym for K.I.S.S., but I’m not here to call names or insult my readers.) As humans, we like clean. We like whitespace. We like simple. This is no different for web design, where it’s easy to get distracted or overwhelmed if there’s a lot happening at once in a small area—especially if someone is looking at your site from their phones. For every scroll of the page, you should have, at most, two elements of focus within the field of vision.
Prioritize page speed
Have you ever visited a website where it takes forever for the content to load? Realistically, it’s probably only a few seconds, but with our short attention spans, a few seconds can feel like forever. The page and site speed influence many things, including bounce rate, conversions, user satisfaction, and even revenue. One of your main tasks with web design is to create a site that keeps people on the page—that’s where all the content is! If your pages are slow to load, people are more inclined to leave. This is also something that search engines pay attention to, but luckily, there are changes you can make and best practices to follow when it comes to page speed.
Make sure your site is mobile-friendly
It’s no secret that people are largely using their mobile devices to surf the web—in 2018, 52.2 percent of web traffic worldwide came from mobile devices! This is why mobile responsivity is critical. A responsive website is one that adapts to whichever device you are using, such as your phone, tablet, or computer. If your website is not optimized for mobile viewing, visitors are more likely to exit out of your page because it’s clunky or difficult to read on their device. Google actually has a way to test this for your site.
Focus on your audience
Your web content is only as strong as your weakest piece and your weakest piece doesn’t consider your readers… that’s how the saying goes, right? Regardless, it’s true. As a business fixated on achieving your goals, it can be easy to lose sight of what matters most—your audience. Without a clear picture of your audience and a strong understanding of what they want from you and your content, you’re likely to write about what you want your readership to gain and not necessarily what they want to learn. Don’t write solely about your product or service—provide value to your website visitors and give them a reason to stay engaged with your content and your brand.
Be mindful of the “fold”
If you’re familiar with a newspaper, you may understand the concept of the content “above the fold” and “below the fold”—this literally means the crease where the newspaper folds in half. The stuff above the fold plays two roles: it has to draw a reader in AND captivate them enough to encourage them to read further down the page. This “fold” also applies to digital content. On a desktop or laptop, above the fold content is content that shows up on the page before you scroll down. Users are spending 80% of their viewing time above this fold, so your content needs to catch and hold their attention. You can use strong headlines, calls to action (CTAs), and even some form of media to support the message you’re trying to convey on the webpage or in a blog.
Create an editorial calendar
While an editorial calendar is something that you’ll only use internally, this living, breathing document helps you stay organized. Here, you can keep track of the content you’ve published, the content you’re working on, and the content you’ll pursue in the future. It can also help you determine if there is enough variety in the content you’re posting. You’re able to then choose a posting frequency AND hold team members (and yourself) accountable for the editorial process. You can create a section in the calendar for topic brainstorms or even note important days or times throughout the year that are relevant to your business. This document is what you make of it!
Do your keyword research, and then use it
A keyword isn’t some hidden message or hard-to-find clue to website success—it’s what you type into search engines to find what you’re looking for. By doing keyword research for your website, you’re digging deeper into which word will ultimately direct your web copy. When writing content, we fall into a pattern of writing what we think our audience wants to know, but with keyword research, we can know what they are searching for. Once you’ve done thorough keyword research, you then have to incorporate these words into your web copy, meta descriptions, title tags, headlines, and any additional copy for the site, such as blogs.
Use solid alt attributes for images
The images on your site have affiliated alt attributes, which is just a fancy way to say the text that describes an image. While these descriptions are beneficial for visually-impaired visitors, it’s also helpful for SEO indexing. Search engines read alt text and use them when determining the relevancy of a webpage, so it’s important to incorporate keywords while making the description as clear as possible.
Update old content and add new keyword-rich content
Fresh content on your website, whether you updated old blog posts and webpages or decided to publish new content, is crucial from an SEO standpoint. Search engines crawl websites to identify and index web content, so by adding new pages to your site or refreshing old content, you’re providing more for search engines to crawl. This improves your chances of moving up in page ranking position. With updates to old content, you’re also able to swap up lower-performing keywords with updated keyword research to inform search engines.
With little adjustments and consistent updates, you can take your website from good to great. If you need assistance with web design, content creation, or SEO, Cosmitto’s got you covered. Give us a call at (412) 218-2430 or fill out our contact form to speak with one of our digital marketing experts.