Of the millions of websites that occupy the Internet, relatively few are so productive that the site owners or managers can honestly say that they are satisfied with the results. That means that just about every individual that is responsible for a website feels that there is room for improvement. By reading this article you can make your website better. How? By ensuring that you do a few basic things that are important to your site visitor. Once you get your site to where you want it, you can begin applying SEO techniques that make your rank site better in search engines.
How Can I Improve My Website?
The short answer to that question is: give your visitors what they want and make it easy for them to get it!
In order to do that, there are some specific techniques that can be gauged that can help you find out what aspects
of your site you can upgrade.
Help People Connect With You
Including basic business information can make your website better.
Sometimes website visitors have already chosen your
business as the one they want to buy from or connect with. If that is the case, make it easy for them to do do what
they want. Be sure you have the following information on every page of your website:
- Phone Number
- Email Address
- Social Media Links
Pages that you should include on your website are an about page and a directions page. An about page that gives your
visitors a clear representation of you and what your site is all about is valuable. Include in it your goals and what
you are seeking to accomplish and perhaps what made you choose that goal. Allowing your visitor to get to know you in
this way will go along way in your efforts. Similarly, social media links will give you the opportunity to reveal
yourself in small informative bits. A page that highlights directions and the location(s) of your
physical business will help you visitor find it and make it easier for them connect with you.
Have an Objective for Your Website
Make your website better by having a main purpose that you want your site to accomplish and make sure you are aiming your efforts in the direction of that goal.
Ask yourself, ‘What do I want the visitors of my site to do when they get
on the site?’ There are many answers to that question and no one answer is necessarily the correct one. Here
are some possible answers:
- Make a purchase
- Watch a video
- Download a document
- Sign up for a newsletter
- Make a contribution of some kind
- Share on social media
The goal of your website – or web page, for that matter – will lend itself to certain techniques and practices
that are unique to that objective. However, there are some general principles that you can apply your site as
a whole that help you to your destination of an improved website. Make it easy for a visitor to see what to
interact with by using icons or buttons that stand out. Communicate to the person what they will get or find if
they interact with the button or icon. When your guest hovers or taps them, give them what was promised, not
To assist with simplicity, keep distracting features like slide shows and blinking or moving ads to a minimum.
Motion draws attention and if you have too many moving, attention grabbing elements on one page of your site,
you will dilute the effectiveness of the elements you do use.
Obviously, if you keep your individual web pages
focused on just a couple of specific goals, that means you will need to have highly targeted pages and a lot
more of them. This will require planning and organizing your site by subject or topic based on the purpose(s)
you have in mind for your website. Utilizing a simple, easy to understand navigation menu system that reflects
the site’s structure will assist you with this goal.
Visitors Appreciate Resourceful Websites
Providing real resources that solve problems for your site visitors will make your website better.
It will not take very long for your
visitors to decide whether to stay. If they do not feel that their immediate need is being satisfied, most
guests will hit the back button and do another search or click a different result on the search they previously
performed. So, the key is to give the visitor what they want, when they want it. Consider an example:
As a web developer, I have an interest in many technical areas, including operating systems. Recently, I
filled in a form on a website that would allow me to receive the “latest information on [a particular operating system]”
I was very interested this subject and was looking forward to receiving the information. About a week later I got
the first email. I was very disappointed. The information that was in the email clearly was not intended to help me,
it was to get my email address for the purpose of advertising to me.
The ‘series’ of emails consisted of various ‘tips’ that were really for beginners. The information was not new and would
clearly not qualify as the ‘latest information’. Additionally, The topic of the email was not covered to a practical
degree and most of the focus was on getting me to sign up for training certification by purchasing a voucher.
What would you guess was my response? After two or three of those uninformative, non-resourceful emails, I unsubscribed.
If I would have been a beginner, or new to the information, this would have been great, but the promise of new information
led me to believe that I was going to be reading about features of this operating system that I had not heard of before. If the information would have been tips on how to do something very technical it would have been great.
It could have even been a tip that I would never use as long as it was in line with what I was expecting based on what I signed up for.
Communicate Through Media
Make your website better by using images and other media to communicate with your site guests.
Communication is made up of more than just thoughts
conveyed through words. Using an image to help your site visitor see a snapshot of what you’re talking about can clarify
your text. Or, a photo of someone showing an expression that gives the reader a specific feeling can contribute to the success of the article
or post. Videos can be even more effective than images if you follow some basic guidelines:
- Keep videos short, informative, or interesting but you have to have at least one of those three features.
- Unless your video the only focal point on the page, consider not using autoplay. If the goal of your guest is
some other action, then the video automatically playing becomes a distraction.
- Use thumbnail that is engaging when the video is not playing. An interesting image when your video is not
playing will encourage your visitor to click the play button.
By all means these are not the only ways to improve a web site, however, they are a good guide to follow and frequently
overlooked when building a website. Additionally, these are basic principles that truly help the visitor get what they want from your website. In the end, that makes your website better for them and ultimately, yourself as well.