Have a goal for your website
What are you trying to accomplish with your site, is it ranking the site highly? Is it getting more time on site? Or is it to just get more return traffic. Having a specific goal rather than a general “make more sales” will help you develop the strategy further.
I am not saying that you should try to have that sort of goal, but you need to think about your users and what are the key elements to your best customer. Do you find that the users who visit the site more than 3 times make a purchase, or users that spend more than 5 minutes on the site end up sending more enquiries? This data can be found in Google Analytics, but you will need to have set up goals in there to get that granular data. I am sure that you understand what I am saying.
Focusing on the specifics that convert the best is the best place to start when optimizing your site.
Make it easy to understand and easy for the search engines to crawl.
A very important element to making your site work well, is to ensure that your site looks good, and that it looks very good compared to your competitors. I don’t mean it needs to have all the bells and whistles of the big boys that have a big budget, but if you compare the aesthetics of your site, does it stand up, or does it look like it was built 10 years ago by a backyard hack?
Giving your user a visually pleasing experience is the key to keeping users on your site. Think about it like this, imagine you have customers come to your office or shop, and it was falling apart, the doors didn’t work very well, the assistants there didn’t really tell them much about the product, and it had been painted 15 years ago by a blind Avant guard surrealist. Do you think that would inspire customers to buy from you? No.. That is exactly the experience you are giving people when they use an ugly site.
Also, now that the internet is very much a part of the western world, users have an expectation in their minds on the sort of site that should come up for a particular search term.
If you search for shoes, you would expect to see a site that show the products, has a big strong message in the header, and be built for taking payments from all the main providers. If you search for Online marketing agency Bangkok, you may expect to see large images, calls to action, information on the staff and maybe a list of clients. Lastly, if you were to search for a plumber in your local area, you would most likely expect to see a site that has simple text, a phone number, and potentially an image of the van or workers.
These expectations are almost worldwide now. Yes there are some variations when we start looking at cultural norms, that may reflect in colors or volume of text on a page, however the expectation of a site is universal.
Yes, optimize your site for the search engines, I do not deny that, however, if you optimize a site and then make it impossible for a user to actually contact you, you’re just throwing money down the drain. One thing to note, Google is getting far better at assessing the user experience of a site, without the need of user data, so if it’s not optimised for user experience now, you may ever end up getting the traffic in the first place.
Somethings to keep in mind:
- Make the navigation easy to understand and don’t have too many options.
- Make the colors simple and use only a few of them.
- Keep them very simple – A user will judge the quality of your product based on the aesthetics of your site, and they will do that in 1/50th of second, SO MAKE IT PRETTY.
Content is one of the elements that makes up a successful marketing strategy, however, when optimizing we need to look at content slightly different.
Content on site is the information that makes up your site, it’s the pages and posts, it’s the about us and the contact us pages and it’s the product descriptions you have. All this content needs to be optimised.
The best way is to focus your content around a central theme and try to follow that throughout your entire site, or if that isn’t possible, build multiple themes that work around a central hub.
As an example, DSA Global, is a Bangkok seo company, yes we also do web design, however, this site is only focused on SEO and marketing. We have a sister site, Pattaya design studios, which is our web design agency arm based in Pattaya, that is an entirely separate site, that only focuses around web design. They don’t cross over and they don’t try to sell outside of the content theme.
This is a critical mistake that I find customers making a great deal of the time. Such as creating multiple sites that have the same content, but only change location data, and then hoping that these sites rank in those areas. These sites are usually selling many services, and they take a shot gun approach.
If there was focus on each site, you can differentiate between the sites, and snap up the potential leads.
An example of this may be with plumbers. Let’s say Bert the plumber wants to target Bangkok and Pattaya and he does toilet unblocking and also fixes leaky pipes.
There will be some research needed on what is the best job for the area, but, one site should be built and optimised around fixing toilets in Bangkok and the other, repairing leaky pipes in Pattaya. They will both have a little bit on all the services offered, but, doing this focus will allow the sites to rank independently of each other in the different area.
Also when we think about the users, and their personas, you need to create the content, using terminology that they will understand. Using The plumbing example again, if you are fixing leaky pipes, make sure you talk about that in a way that is easy to understand. Don’t tell your readers that you will regalvanise all 12-15 inch double lined copper wound steal inserts. That you will recombobulate the oppositional transaxle to the gastrotaxiderminal flange. Tell them you fix leaky pipes, talk the language that your customer talks and you will be rewarded for that. Always remember the personas and what they will expect and optimize for that.
Now that you have the tone and language of the content down, you will want to add it to the site. The most important place to start is with the meta title and description, this is the heading and sub information you see on Google when searching. It’s your first impression so make the content stand out and include a call to action. This will help increase the click-through-rate to your site. Also include your most important keywords in the title and description.
Then you have your website headings – again, use the important keywords in your headings, but make sure that they are used in context to the information around them.
You can then go about adding the bulk of your text content to the rest of the site, always using your target phrases throughout the body of the content. This article here, is actually targeting the phrases Marketing Automation, but it’s not over used, instead it’s used in context to support the rest of the content.
On page optimization is a very large topic and one that we will go into more detail in a later post.
But they break into these five elements:
The formatting of the content
Starting with the text, you need to ensure that you have a set font hierarchy on site, that the headings are the same size and font, that the paragraph text is legible, not too closely spaced and that it’s not presented in great slabs of text.
You need to include pictures and graphics throughout your content as it breaks up the page, gives some white-space, and can also accentuate the content or topic that you are talking about. Having a graphic representation of data can give the reader, at a glance, all the information in that paragraph, so it’s going to make it easier to understand, but to also remember.
Try to not use too large a sentence or paragraph, and again, use the white space and text positioning to your advantage. That is why Japanese’s characters are so pretty to look at, they use the empty space as well as they use the inked space.
If you can, break things to lists and use bullet points or numbers, give each line its own time to shine and your readers will thank you for it as well.
Lastly, using bold, italics, indenting and links can give the readers some short cuts to getting through long text, but still know at a glance the very key points and words that you’re trying to convey.
So, these three elements will make the content you have on your site easy to understand and digest for your users. It makes it easy for the search engines to understand and index, and lastly, it’s going to make your visitors come back again and again, as they know that you have thought about your information and that it’s presented in a way that they can understand and relate to.
One last thing to take away, websites should not be static, they should continually evolve and change and you should always look in to your data and user behaviors. Then update, change and tweak that content on your site to get the best you can from it.
A site needs to evolve constantly.