59 tips to improve your website and get better results


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59 tips to improve your website and get better results

  1. 1. 59 Tips to Improve Your Website and Get Better ResultsA company’s website is one of its most important assets. The success of your business online depends on it. Thereis much to a great website than a good design. In this article we take a look at 58 easy ways to improve yourwebsite.The tips have been divided into the following categories for ease of reading: • Branding • Social Media • Customer Trust And Confidence • Quality Of Content • SEO • Navigation • Usability • Compliance & ValidationBrandingThe simple tips below will help to reinforce your company’s brand.1. Make sure your design is professional whether you are just starting out or run an established business. Thereare many low cost web design methods that you can take advantage of.2. Make sure the design and layout reflects your branding and is consistent across all other digital as well asprinted materials as part of your marketing efforts.3. Register the .net and .org versions of your domain to prevent your brand and the URL’s from being misused.You can redirect them correctly to your website if required.4. Create and upload a custom favicon image for your website. This is displayed in the address bar and alsodisplayed when someone bookmarks your site.Social MediaThe following tips will make it easy for users to share your website content on social media.5. Add a WordPress blog to your website and update it frequently.6. Display share buttons on all pages of your website. Just below the page title or at the end of the content is agood place.
  2. 2. 7. Include follow buttons for the main social networks in a prominent place in a global area that displayedthroughout your website e.g. header, footer or sidebar.8. Don’t clutter your site with too many social bookmarking options. Remove all unnecessary options and providemore focus to the main networks that get the best results.9. Make sure to include Google Plus and Pinterest buttons.
  3. 3. Customer Trust & ConfidenceThe following tips will improve your website by helping to build trust and confidence in your website amongwebsite visitors.10. Add phone number to your header to help build trust and confidence among visitors.11. ‘About’ page is one of the most important pages on any business website. Take a fresh look at your page tomake sure all necessary elements of About page are present.12. Display full contact details on your website including your business address. Just listing your email address isnot enough.13. Add a dedicated testimonials page to your website and consider showcasing main testimonials on yourhomepage.14. Consider adding a clients or case studies page to your site.
  4. 4. 15. Add a ‘meet the team’ page on your website with photos and brief description about each member. This willmake your company more approachable and give a face to your company.16. Consider adding a FAQ section on your website to proactively address common concerns of customers.
  5. 5. Quality of ContentContent is one of the most important assets on a website. The tips below will help improve the quality of contenton your site and increase the value for readers.17. Run a spell check on all pages of your website and fix errors where needed. You can use free tools such asSpellchecker.net.18. Use headings, bullets, paragraphs and other formatting elements in your content that make it easy for readersto scan through the page without having to read each and every word.19. Try to use at least one image on every page of your website.20.Increase your font size by a few pixels. Large fonts are in trend and makes the content easier to read.SEO
  6. 6. The tips below will help improve your website’s rank on search engines resulting in more traffic to your website.21. Optimise each page on your website in line with Google’s SEO guidelines.22. Make sure your website is not created entirely in Flash. Websites created in regular HTML or XHTML are mucheasier to update and easier to rank on search engine results.23. Redirect the non-www version of your website to the www version. This can be achieved by adding one lineof code to the .htaccess file present on Linux servers. This improves usability and avoids duplicate contentpenalty from Google.24. Create a Robots.txt file on your website to make it easier for search engines to index your site.25. Create an XML version of your sitemap to enable better indexing on search engines.26. Add keyword rich descriptions to all images on your website (ALT tag). This will improve your search engineranking.27. Use unique, keyword rich SEO Meta title and description tags on all pages of website.28. Use a free service such as brokenlinkchecker.com to identify and fix broken links on your website.
  7. 7. 29. Make sure your URL’s are search engine friendly. Include keywords in page names and separate multiplewords with dashes instead of underscores.E.g. of Search engine friendly URL: www. yourdomainname.com/web-design-service/E.g of URL that is not optimised: www. yourdomainname.com/page_id=123NavigationThe simple tips below will help improve your navigation.30. Try to use simple text based navigation menu instead of images or flash. You can use CSS to style the text asrequired.31. Consider using a drop-down menu if your website has many pages.32. Create a footer menu at the bottom of every page on your site with links to pages such as privacy policy, termsand conditions and sitemap.
  8. 8. 33. Use contextual links within your content to interlink related pages. This will improve navigation and make yoursite easier to crawl by search engines.34. Create a dedicated sitemap page on your website and add a link in the footer of your website.35. Display breadcrumbs on all pages. It is a simple method to improve navigation. sitemap, tabs for latestcontent, most recent content, etc. are some easy ways to do this.
  9. 9. 36. Try to ensure no page is more than two clicks away from the homepage.37. Use dynamic modules such as Latest Content, Popular items, Related Content in your sidebar. This will keepyour page fresh and up to date automatically.38. Get rid of the Links page if you have one on your website. It is old fashioned and can affect the quality of yoursite. Furthermore, reciprocal link exchanges are not considered useful anymore, reducing the need to have a linkspage.39. Display a search box on every page of your website. Consider Google’s Custom search engine (CSE) to poweryour search.Usability40. Use CSS techniques to make your website responsive. Responsive websites are mobile compatible sites wherethe design automatically adjusts to fit the screen size of the user.
  10. 10. 41. Use appropriate validation in all forms on your website.42. Display user-friendly error messages throughout your website.
  11. 11. 43. Display a confirmation message whenever users complete an action on your website.44. Link your logo to your homepage to improve usability.45. Remove pop-up windows and frames on your website if used on your site.46. Use custom 404 page that is displayed to users when a page is not found on your website. Include links torelevant sections of your site.
  12. 12. 47. Take steps to speed-up your site. Optimise all graphics and remove unnecessary widgets and plugins that arenot being used or do not add value to your website. .48. Add a Google Location Map on your contact page.Conversion and Lead CaptureThe simple tips below will help to improve your website by increasing the potential to generate leads for yourbusiness.49. Display call to action on every page of your website.
  13. 13. 50. Add a contact or enquiry form to your website and make it easily accessible on all pages.51. Consider adding Live Chat feature to your site. It will enable you to respond to customer enquiries and offersupport to website visitors in real-time.52. Consider including ‘request a call-back’ or ‘get quote’ form on your website to help generate leads.53. Boost your email sign-ups by displaying a well designed sign-up form in a prominent place on your site.
  14. 14. 54. Set-up goals in Google analytics to track conversions on your website.55. Take a look at all the form fields on your website to see if they are necessary. If not remove them. The lessinformation users have to provide, the higher will the conversions.Compliance & ValidationThe tips below will ensure basic compliance and avoid legal issues.56. Add a privacy policy page on your website to ensure legal compliance.57. If your business is from the EU, don’t forget to add a cookie consent form on your website. From July 2012,the new EU privacy laws make it mandatory to so if your website uses any form of tracking or collects any datafrom customers. Failure to comply can result in a hefty fine.
  15. 15. 58. Use W3C Validation service to validate your website code and correct any errors.59. Display copyright message at the bottom of every page on your website.ConclusionThere is much more to a good website than an attractive design. Your businesses can take advantage of thesimple tips above to improve your website and get better results. If you already have a great website, you canread how to promote your business online.The Author K.Singh is Web Design Consultant for London based Web Design Company and the Editor-in-Chief ofInternet Marketing & Web design Blog.