Website Optimisation For Small Businesses – It’s MORE than SEO
Your website is your home-base online. It should be the focus of your online marketing and the place you drive most of the traffic in your calls-to-action. So it’s important to set it up in a way that is optimised to attract, retain and convert more of your ideal customers.
Website optimisation is the process of using advanced strategies and tools to enhance the performance of your website and grow your revenue. The good news is that many of those ‘advanced strategies’ are actually quite simple and things you can implement without much technical expertise.
When you hear ‘website optimisation’, most people immediately think of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). SEO is the process of optimising your website and the pages within it to rank higher in Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) for specific keyword phrases. It’s a super important part of website optimisation, BUT it is not the only optimisation that can take place on the website.
Beyond SEO – 10 tips to optimise your website for better conversions
The other important element of website optimisation is on-page optimisation. This process ensures that potential customers on your website have the best user experience, and are guided to take your desired action in the easiest way possible, so that you can convert more of your website traffic into leads and sales.
Here’s 10 tips to optimise your website for more traffic and better conversions, combining both search and on-page optimisation strategies:
- Analyse your website data
- Reduce website bounce rate
- Design for mobile first
- Improve page load speed
- Search engine optimisation
- Use social proof to improve trust
- Optimise images before uploading
- Conduct thorough keyword research
- Incorporate lead magnets
- Optimise for on-page SEO
1. Analyse your website data
Google Analytics and Google Search Console traffic data help paint a clear picture of how well your website is performing.
Google Analytics is a tool that reports on how people behave on your website. It tracks all sorts of user behaviour metrics including:
- Total number of visitors
- Total visits
- How long people are spending on your website
- How many pages they are browsing per visit
- Which pages they visit most
- Top entry pages
- Top exit pages
- Where your website visitors come from
- Are your website visitors converting
- What they are searching for on your website
- Time of day, week, month you get most visitors
- Which city or country visitors come from
- Which social channels drive the most traffic
- Bounce rate
- AND SO MUCH MORE!
One piece of data by itself might not tell you anything, but when you collect lots of data from multiple data points, you start to notice patterns.
For example, if a few people visit your site and fail to click on your CTA (for example your contact/enquiry button), you might not have a problem. However, if a large percentage of visitors ignore it, that’s an indication you need to make some adjustments.
You should be analysing your website data for patterns and then determine what story those patterns are telling you. For example, more people might be converting from desktop compared to mobile. Why would this be? Is it a page load speed issue? Do you need to optimise your content or checkout procedure better for the mobile experience?
2. Reduce website bounce rate
Your website bounce rate is the percentage of people that exited your website without visiting more than one page. The lower your bounce rate, the better.
Tips for reducing website bounce rate:
- Interlink products, categories and blog posts
- Improve readability
- Big introd text
- Short paragraphs
- Easy to read font
- Background colour
- Ratio line height
- Font size 14+
- Keep products, packages and content up to date
- Increase website speed
- Add related or popular products, packages and posts to the bottom of articles
- Test different anchor text for website navigation
- Reorder posts/products on category pages to show the most popular
- Improve featured images for posts/products
Improving your bounce rate will also have the double whammy benefit of improving your SEO.
3. Design For Mobile
More than half web traffic worldwide is accessed on mobile devices, and this is set to rise. Designing your website for mobile experience should be a high priority not just for all those people, but also because Google has launched the mobile-first index. This means you might rank better if you focus on mobile friendliness.
Responsive design offers the easiest solution for designing a mobile-friendly website. You can download free and premium WordPress themes that have responsive design built in, which means you don’t have to worry about adding any extra code to create a mobile version of your website (which used to be the norm in the old days).
4. Improve page load speed
People don’t like to sit around and wait while a site loads up. Having a website that loads fast is the first step in a good user experience.
A 5 sec load time leads to a 38% bounce rate (the longer it takes, the higher the bounce rate).
5. Search Engine Optimisation
Optimising for search engines is a powerful marketing tool.
70% of marketers see SEO as more effective than pay per click advertising (PPC). That’s because people trust organic search results over advertisements and are therefore more likely to click on an organic search result than a paid search result.
In very basic terms, if you have quality content relevant to what the user is searching for, then you get rewarded by Google with a higher search ranking.
The first step towards improving your SEO is to make sure that Google is correctly indexing all your pages, and that you don’t have any obvious SEO errors.
Use Google Search Console (and Bing Webmaster Tools) to:
- Register your site map
- Make sure that Google is correctly indexing all your pages
- See which obvious errors need fixing
- Keep track of which keywords you rank for
6. Use social proof to improve trust
New visitors to your website might not know anything about your company, so you need to earn their trust (especially if those are coming from top of the funnel campaign) with your content.
This is because the relationship is basically starting from scratch and you need to use your website as a tool to help to get them to know, like and trust you.
As 84% of people trust online reviews as much as their friends, it’s important that you highlight previous customer experiences via positive reviews, testimonials and other social proof throughout your website.
This is especially important on any pages where your call-to-action promotes a lead generation or sales opportunity.
7. Optimising images before uploading
Images tend to be the heaviest part of any webpage, so your pictures can have a significant impact on your loading speed if they are not optimised.
8. Conduct keyword research
Years ago, you could pick a keyword out of thin air, write a 300-word article, and rank for that keyword the next day – SEO doesn’t work like that anymore.
Use keyword planning tools, like Google Ads Keywords Planner, SEMrush, ahrefs, Keywords Everywhere and Uber Suggest, to help you find long-tail keywords related to your business and niche that fit with your prospective customers’ user intent.
Think about why they would search for and what they would hope to find on a page about it.
Start with a broad keyword. For instance, maybe you offer customised bracelets, so you begin with a keyword like “Personalised bracelets” and then see what is suggested as alternatives where there are a large number of search queries, but not much competition by comparison (e.g. “personalised baby bracelets”).
Those long-tail keyword phrases will be the easiest to rank for in the shortest period of time. On top of that, if you focus on those keyword phrases from within that list that are most likely to have buyer intent (e.g. “personalised baby bracelets Australia”), then they are most likely to give you the best return on your investment of time to create the content initially.
Do this type of research repeatedly as you create more pages for your site. Then you can write long, in-depth articles that provide as much information on the topic as possible as a way of attracting your ideal audience. You can also use this information to optimise your product/category pages on your website for these keyword phrases to increase the chances of your products appearing in search results for those phrases.
9. Incorporate lead magnets
A lot of time, money and energy goes into developing a website and driving traffic to it.
Therefore, regardless if they came from organic SEO, social media, paid advertising or a referral, you want to get a return on that investment by generating as many leads as possible from your traffic.
You should create multiple high quality lead magnets that will attract your ideal customers so that you can collect their contact details prior to them exiting your site, generating leads in the process.
AD STRATEGY THAT WORKS
Facebook Ads Webinar
During this webinar you’ll learn the strategies we used to generate a 700% return on investment for a client using Facebook Ads and how YOU can use these insights to achieve similar results for YOUR business.
IT ALL STARTS WITH A GOOD OFFER
Outstanding Offers Checklist
This checklist will help you to make sure that the offers you are presenting to your audience are optimised for best practice so that you can supercharge your digital marketing results and be positioned for success.
ARE YOUR FOUNDATIONS IN PLACE?
Digital Marketing Audit Checklist
Use this guide to ensure your digital marketing foundations (website, email marketing, social media and online presence) are optimised so that your paid traffic campaigns have the best chance of success.
10. Optimise for on-page SEO
On-page SEO is the practice of optimising individual web pages in order to rank higher and earn more relevant traffic in search engines.
- URL slugs
- Meta descriptions
- Image alt tags
- Page content
For best results, use your primary keyword phrase in your headline, preferably as close to the beginning as possible, in the slug, and in at least one sub-headline. Aim for 0.5-2.5 % keyword phrase usage in the body copy. But try not to keyword stuff – write for humans first (not robots)!
Website optimisation tools
There are various tools you can use to assist with website optimisation. Some of our favourites include:
You don’t want to have a leaky sales funnel.
As you will be driving most of your traffic online to your website, it’s super important that you optimise your website to get the best possible conversion once those visitors get there so you are not leading leads and sales.
By implementing the above tips and using the recommended tools, you will be able to optimise your website to help you gain more traffic, leads and sales, which will increase the overall return on investment for all of your digital marketing efforts.
We teach website optimisation as one of the pillars within the Click Engage Convert Academy. If you would like to learn more about how you can optimise your website and gain more leads and sales using the power of digital marketing, then we invite you to check out the Click Engage Convert Academy.