We work frequently with clients to evaluate/audit and make recommendations for improvements to their websites and write website content. In addition, Linda serves as a digital marketing specialist with the State of Wisconsin’s Business Intelligence Team
and Purdue University
. In this role she reviews and makes recommendations to websites of small but growing companies.
Through this work, we tend to see some very common (and, fortunately, easy to fix) mistakes being made. Here we take a look at “5 Simple Website Mistakes That Many Businesses Make.”
1) Not making it readily apparent how to contact the company.
Email, phone, address, as appropriate and relevant, should be very prominent and easy to find. Even you’re using a contact form of some sort some people will still want to reach out via other means. Make it easy for them to do that!
2) Not considering SEO in headers, image captions (or copy in general).
While we aren’t slaves to SEO and always focus on just “writing for our audience” first, SEO does matter. Once your copy is written, consider the keywords you want to optimize for. Keywords are the words or phrases that people are most likely to enter in a search tool (like Google) when they’re looking for the products or services you have to offer. Choosing the “right” keywords can be complex and involve some research and analytics, but at a high level you should be able to identify some terms that are common in your market.
Once you have your list go back to your headings, your captions, and your copy to see where you might add these keywords. That will improve the odds that people will be directed to your website when they’re conducting a search.
3) Not having Google Analytics on the site.
This is a big one! We’re often shocked to find out that websites don’t have Google Analytics applied. It’s free. And it’s relatively easy (for your webmaster) to apply the code to your site. Doing so will provide you with a wide range of data on how people are finding your website, who they are, where they’re from, what they’re doing on the site, how long they visit, etc. Reviewing your analytics can provide you with insights about what to do more of, what to improve and what to continually monitor.
4) Not thinking about the site from the audience’s point of view.
While the content on your site is obviously “all about you,” it shouldn’t be all about you! What it should be about is your target audience and their needs. Information on the site should address the questions visitors may have and make the answers very apparent, easy to find and very, very clear.
Take a look at your copy to see how often you use words like “we” or “I” compared to how often you use words like “you.” More of the latter should be your goal.
5) Trying to pack too much information on the main pages.
The final point we’ll make is “keep it short and simple” (KISS). Your home page and primary nav pages should be very simple, easy to read and navigate, and address high-level needs. From there links could be included to more detailed information but for the main pages, less is more.
These very simple fixes can go a long way toward improving the quality and functionality of your website, and building business. It might be a good New Year’s Resolution to do an audit of your website and make some improvements to create more opportunities in 2022.
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