Tips to Improve Your Website in 2021

Having an attractive and functional website has become the minimum requirement for almost any business. It serves as an online storefront where you can further promote your products and services, as well as attend to a bigger customer base. That’s why you have to look at ways to constantly improve your website.

If you haven’t made a real effort on your business website yet, take the inspiration that a new year brings and get to work. You don’t want to be left behind in 2021. To get you started, here are our tips to help you improve your website in the following aspects:

1. Optimisation;
2. Content;
3. Design;
4. SEO;
5. Tools.

Optimisation

1. Mobile Responsive (aka Mobile-Friendly)

Popular website builders like WordPress and Shopify allow you to create websites that are automatically optimised for mobile. Consider getting help from a web developer if you’d like to move your current website to any of those platforms. Alternatively, you can always start fresh on a builder you’re comfortable with.

2. Optimise Site Images

To fix this problem, make sure your images are optimised in terms of size. Format also matters — Google introduced a new image format called WebP, which produces image files 25% to 34% smaller than JPEG. If your content permits, using low-width images will greatly speed up your page load time.

A great image compression tool we like to use is ShortPixel, which not only allows you to compress images but also runs an optimisation test on any images you currently have on your site.

3. Find and Fix 404 Errors

If you’re not sure how to figure out if your current website has 404s, you can sign up for a free website audit or run one on your own using a tool like SEMRush or Dead Link Checker. If you discover any 404, here are 3 ways you can deal with them:

1. Redirect the error to another page that’s relevant;
2. Edit the page link to point to an active URL;
3. Create a custom 404 page with a list of other pages website visitors can redirect themselves to.

Improve your website in 2021 by optimising
Improve your website in 2021 by optimising
Check your site analytics — if most of your traffic comes from mobile devices, it’s high time you implement all the optimisation tips discussed in this article.

4. Fix Tech Issues

Some of the common technical issues sites have include:

  1. No HTTPS security;
  2. Site isn’t indexed correctly;
  3. Missing XML sitemaps;
  4. Missing or incorrect robots.txt;
  5. Missing or non-optimised meta descriptions;
  6. Slow load times.

Content

1. Targeting

If you’ve already built a customer base, take a look at your current clientele and create personas based on your most loyal customers. Understand their pain points, needs, and language, and use that knowledge to craft all sorts of content for your website.

If you’re just starting out with defining a clear target audience, begin by thinking of your niche in the market. What areas are not being served yet and how do people in that market behave and think? You may start with a rough idea, but that’s better than selling without a goal. With more interactions with real customers, you can always fine-tune your targeting as you go.

2. Implement Calls-to-Action (CTAs)

A useful rule of thumb is to place your CTAs at the top right of your navigation and at the bottom of your website pages. However, be careful not to inundate customers with the same CTAs all over your site. The key here is to make it easy for potential customers to find what they’re looking for.

Bonus Tip: Go beyond button colours — the most effective CTAs use action words that a specific target customer base understands. In most cases, people are looking for specific wording, also called trigger words. Like many aspects of running a business, nailing this requires researching your audience and understanding what makes them tick.

3. Add Social Proof

There are a couple of ways to present social proof on your website. Let’s explore 3 popular ways of doing that:

Customer Reviews. For product and service offerings, adding customer reviews can influence potential customers to convert. This year, improve your website by adding a customer review plugin or an area where you showcase the best positive reviews you’ve received.

User-Generated Content. Did you know that 77% of consumers believe photos from customers affect their decision to purchase more than professional photos from brands? If you’ve had customers sharing photos of your products on social media, incorporating those to your website helps build trust, spark product discovery, and encourage purchase. For starters, you can explore tools like Walls.io or Mediatoolkit.

Case Studies. Usually done by B2B or service-oriented businesses, publishing case studies of successful client work can also help you build trust towards potential clients looking at your website. To write one, simply take some of the best work you’ve done and highlight key performance indicators (KPIs) you’ve achieved for that job. Think of it like a resume, only with more storytelling.

Improve Your Website in 2021 by Adding Social Proof
Improve Your Website in 2021 by Adding Social Proof
Word of mouth is the most powerful marketing tactic there is. Enhance your website by making space for positive reviews that can encourage site visitors to convert.

4. Implement Social Sharing

On your blog, simply implement a social sharing widget to allow your readers to quickly forward your content on their social media feeds. Every post you publish needs a boost on social media.

However, if your readership is still low, you might want to temporarily avoid showing how many shares and likes your articles have received. This may defeat the purpose of encouraging your readers to share your content. Keep it simple with buttons and reserve the numbers for when your content starts to perform well.

5. Add Video Content

No video editing experience? No problem. Online tools like Canva provide an extremely user-friendly platform for quickly generating videos you can use on a website. When creating your own videos, remember to keep it short and direct, and definitely stick to your brand when deciding on imagery, copy, and music.

If you require something more specific, our team can work with you to create animated and/or live-action videos specially designed for your website.

Design

1. Develop a Brand Identity

If you’re unsure where to start, take inspiration from these 12 brand archetypes developed by psychologist, Carl Jung. Think about the values you want to embody as a brand, find your archetype, and build it up from there.

2. Web Design

A well-designed website can help build trust and guide visitors to take action. Creating a great user experience involves making sure your website design is optimised for usability (form and aesthetics) and how simple it is to use (functionality).

If you’re not sure how your current website stacks up against usability and functionality standards, book a free website audit with us to identify any critical issues and improvement points.

3. Add Imagery

Unique, compelling images that engage your audience and improve their experience need to be relevant. You don’t want to confuse your users with an image that doesn’t explain what you’re trying to get across. You also don’t want to add an image just for the sake of taking up space if it’s not relevant to the content on that page. It’s important to always ask yourself if the image you’ve chosen supports or furthers the content. Again, images have to be used sparingly to keep your site loading times fast.

A common mistake is the misuse of vector images for a business website trying to establish a professional brand identity. Vectors are best suited for brands that want to evoke fun and approachability. If the nature of your business requires building trust and authority, stick to professional images and use vectors sparingly to add texture or accent.

SEO

1. Find Your Keywords

If you’re not sure how to perform keyword research, Wow Ventures offers content strategy development that starts out with a look at the best performing keywords in your industry. Alternatively, you can use a tool like SEMRush, Moz, or Ahrefs to determine what keywords your competitors use, as well as the difficulty in competing for each.

2. Publish Content

The key to publishing content that works? Be genuine. Don’t write a blog post just for the sake of incorporating some search terms into your site. Try to establish your blog as a credible resource that your audience can go to when they need help. Some examples of helpful content are guides, product reviews, and insights on updates in your industry.

3. Link Building (aka Backlinks)

Not all backlinks are created equal, and you play a big part in making sure the ones you receive are as high-quality as the content you’re producing. Let’s discuss what makes good backlinks.

Come from a relevant website in your industry. A restaurant linking to a home appliances store won’t improve the latter’s ranking. Aim for backlinks from players in your industry, specifically those in the same size range as your business.

Come from sites that already have authority. The more authoritative the external website, the more powerful the link. Moz offers a free domain authority checker called LinkExplorer, which is a great tool for deciding whether to request a backlink from a site or not.

Be listed as dofollow (vs nofollow). If a link is marked as nofollow, this signals to Google that this particular website should not be counted in the influence of your ranking. An example of a nofollow link is a blog comment or social media post.

Tools

1. Implement an Automation

Think about the steps involved in your own customer journey and find tools to automate some of them. For example, if your goal is to get customers on the phone, consider implementing an appointment scheduling tool on your website. It can cut the back and forth emails involved in trying to set a meeting schedule and instantly gives you a great opportunity to seal a deal with a prospect.

2. Add a Chatbot

3. Setup Analytics

With analytics setup for your website, you’ll be able to learn more about your audience and use data to decide on your next move, whether it be about blog topics or product features.

Google has a helpful guide for integrating Google Analytics into your website. It covers not only the setup but also key terminologies to know before analysing your website data.

Act Now and have a Prosperous 2021

However, if you’re a bit stuck or just time poor, I highly recommend that you talk to a web developer. Any decent agency will be able to do an audit of your website to show you everything that needs to be fixed. From there you should get a price breakdown so you can stagger the improvements if it’s necessary for your cashflow,

LinkedIn Specialist | UI/UX Designer | Marketeer | App Developer

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