With over a billion websites on the web, it’s no secret that building and maintaining a phenomenal website that keeps your users coming back isn’t as easy as it looks. But when it’s done correctly with the right team and the best CMS in town, it is possible.
While your website visitors may not be able to tell you exactly what kept them on your site, they can (and will) tell you exactly what you did wrong to make them leave. It’s no surprise that users favor websites that actually work. Any inkling of a bad user experience can offset users. Trust (digital, in this case) takes time to build, but only seconds to lose.
“A designer may recognize the fundamental role that plays in making great experiences possible, but most people don’t. But they do recognize when design fails.” – Christopher Butler, COO of Newfangled
Fortunately for you, that is something that can be fixed. So below are 7 warning signs your website is in serious trouble:
If you can’t remember the last time you changed something, updated or added a new product or service on your website this is a sure sign your website is in serious trouble. We are half way through 2015 and it is time to say Bye, Bye, Bye to your content from the year 2000.
Poor User Experience
A great website is developed and designed with the user in mind. If you look at the success of the head honchos like Amazon, Google and Apple, you’ll see that it is fueled by their ever-evolving user experience. They say if you can’t beat em, join em…right? So regardless of whether you’re a small business, large business, B2B or B2C, your website strategy must emulate what these key players have already mastered. If you’re not sure what type of experience your website is providing, stop everything you’re doing and check your site for these signs:
- slow load times
- lack of contact information, location and hours of operation.
- automatic playing videos and crawling ads
- unclear CTA’s or none at all
- confusing navigation
- sells rather than informs
Not Responsive or Mobile-Friendly
While this may be a no-brainer for most, there are still many who haven’t accepted the new reality that mobile is the preferred viewing screen. If Google’s algorithm update didn’t scare you enough, maybe their statement that more searches are being done on mobile devices than desktops in 10 countries including U.S. and Japan will. If your visitors can’t access your site while they are waiting in line for coffee or sitting on the couch during a commercial break, they will find someone’s site (most likely your competitor) that they can.
Not Optimized for Search Engines
SEO is still well alive and kicking, my friends. It’s just done a bit different these days. In order for search engines to consider you a good fit for a search query, you must be consistently updating your website with fresh content that is relevant to those queries your users are searching for. Even more, you must remember that optimizing for search engines requires work outside your website as well. This includes things like backlinks, social media engagement, guest posts, press releases and reputation management.
Lengthy & Confusing URLS
If your URLs look like a foreign language, you’re in trouble. If your URLs don’t include or represent the name of your business, organization, or healthcare system, well, call us now. Not only is a poorly defined URL confusing to your visitors, it’s quite difficult for search engines to index long URLs with a never-ending amount of hyphens.
Clicking on a broken link will send users to non-existing web pages. We all know, nothing is more frustrating than seeing the “404-Page Not Found” error when you’re perusing a website. They’re also bad for your site’s usability, reputation and SEO. Broken links immediately stop search engine crawlers from indexing your site. That means, when it comes across a broken link, it moves on to the next site. Any pages it hasn’t crawled yet won’t be indexed. Believe us now? Take the time to replace or remove each one.
You’re Not Measuring for Results
When it comes to website metrics, there are few better free tools at a marketer’s disposal than Google Analytics. Inside good ole Google Analytics, you’ll find an abundance of data relating to how your website is being found and used. Pay attention to it! Notice which pages your website visitors are frequenting. Also notice which pages your visitors aren’t going to. Perhaps those pages aren’t helpful or are outdated. Ask yourself if it makes sense to still have those pages on your website. This data will continuously help you better understand your audience and think critically about the content on your site and usability of it.
By harmonizing your company’s goals with those of your website visitors as much as possible, you should find that both can be realized with little difficulty. That means both a profitable company and happy visitors/prospects… it’s a win/win situation!