The Impact of Website Performance and Usability to SEO

Did you know that ranking well in Google doesn’t only depend on good quality content? In fact, your website’s usability, as well as its performance, also have an impact, so can improve or damage search rankings. Therefore, by improving your website’s usability, as well as its performance, you can get better results from your website.

Google has always placed significant emphasis on performance and usability. It even offers a free site speed test tool that you can use to check the performance of your website. This tool even tells you what you should fix.

In addition, Google publishes guidance and advice on some elements of website usability.

Let’s now look further at the impact of website performance and usability to SEO

Understanding Usability

Usability is a measure of the user-friendliness of your website. For example, it looks at how easy it is for users to navigate your website, find what they need, and do what they want to do, without getting lost or confused.

The following questions can help you determine the usability of your website:

  • Is it easy to navigate?
  • Are there elements that you can improve?
  • Are there many distractions on the website (like ads or popups)?
  • Is the contact information clearly visible?
  • Does the design include all necessary features?

Site usability also takes into account the efficiency of your site’s design. You can judge this by analysing the time it takes users to perform tasks once they are familiar with the layout.

Finally, website usability is also about making your website available on all device. This means ensuring you have a responsive design that works well on mobile phones.

Understanding Website Performance

Google measures website performance by the speed it takes web pages to download and display in users’ browsers. Therefore, an outdated website design, regardless of whether it has incredible content, will probably suffer on search result pages with a low ranking.

Google told us this directly back in 2010 and it has issued updates regularly since then. Specifically, it says it uses site speed as a factor when determining the rank of websites. Why is Google so fixated on performance?

A webpage that takes too long to load can lead to a bad user experience which, in turn, increases the bounce rate. Google doesn’t like high bounce rates because they essentially mean failure, i.e. Google failed to send the user to a website that could help with their query.

As a consequence, your ranking in Google – and the goals you have for your website – suffer.

In fact, statistics show that 47 percent of users expect a page to load in just two seconds. In addition, as delay as short as one-second can lead to a reduction in conversions by as much as seven percent. So, an e-commerce site making roughly $1,000 a day could lose as much as $250,000 a year in revenue because their website has a one-second delay.

How Usability and Website Performance Impact Your Business

Usability and website performance have both a direct and an indirect impact on SEO. As well as impacting SEO, however, both also have an impact on your business. After all, website performance and usability play a part in improving recommendations, increasing traffic, and achieving conversions.

For instance, if navigating through your website is difficult, then engaging with visitors will be difficult too. These low engagement rates often lead to visitors leaving your website and being hesitant to return in the future.

Likewise, if users don’t quickly spot what they are looking for, there is a high chance they will just stay on your page for only a few seconds before heading back to the search results page in the hope of finding another website that will be more helpful. This is a potential lost customer.

What Can You Do to Improve Website Performance and Usability?

It is important to remember that Google uses a lot of tools, factors, and strategies to determine performance and usability. It even uses its web browser Chrome to monitor how people interact with websites.

So, what should you do to optimise the performance and usability of your website?

Primarily, good usability involves not only removing roadblocks but also minimising the total steps a user must take to get to the end goal. Since usability involves making a task hassle-free and intuitive, you need to come up with a user interface that is very simple to learn as well as being appealing and rewarding to visitors.

You should also speed up the loading time of your website so that fewer users abandon your pages out of frustration. There are a lot of things you can do to improve loading times like leveraging browser caching, using a content delivery network, minimising redirects, optimising images, etc.

To find out exactly what is slowing up your website, you should check it with the speed test tool above before fixing any problems it highlights. Make sure you check the speed of your website on mobile devices too, as there may be additional issues you should look at.

In addition to the above, you can also use the following tips to improve both website performance and usability:

  • Use a heat-map tool that lets you record click behaviour on your website. This will help you understand how visitors use your website, so you can make improvements.
  • Try to avoid publishing a lot of irrelevant content. Your pages and posts need to be clear, concise, and easy to understand.
  • Place key information in places where the eye is naturally drawn. Statistics show that 80 percent of users look at information placed above the page fold while 69 percent of users spend their time looking at the left side of the page. Content above the fold is content that is visible without the user having to scroll. Therefore, put your most important information at the top left-hand side of the pages on your website.
  • If your website is not mobile-friendly, it is time for you to optimise it for those who visit your website using their tablets or smartphones. Remember, optimising your website for mobile doesn’t just mean making it look good on mobile devices. You must also check all the content and functions to ensure they work properly on mobile too.
  • Pick out visually appealing colours instead of those that are quite distracting. Make sure you research colour psychology before you finalise a colour scheme.

Website performance and usability are issues that you simply cannot ignore as even small problems can have a significant impact. On the flip side, by optimising performance and usability, your ranking in Google and your business overall are likely to improve.

Top Tips for Effective Product Description Writing

How important are product descriptions? After all, some products appear to sell just fine even though the description is poor. This doesn’t mean product description writing are not important, though.

Here are some reasons why you should optimise your product descriptions:

  •         Helps the customer understand what the product does
  •         Explains the benefits of the product to the customer
  •         Helps the customer imagine using, wearing, or consuming the product
  •         Helps with SEO as a product description gives Google more content to analyse

Top Tips for Good Product Descriptions Writing

  •         Make each product description unique – this can be a challenge if you have a lot of products. It is important to make them unique, however, both to help potential customers when they are viewing your website and for Google. Remember, even though some of your products may be very similar, using the same description on each one could be classed as duplicate content on Google. Duplicate content is one of the things Google does not like.
  •         Don’t get fixated on word count or length – there is no fixed length that your product description should be. In fact, there is no recommended length either as it simply depends on the product. This is because some products will require long descriptions, particularly if you have to describe what the product does. Others, however, will only need a brief sentence or two. An example is a pair of jeans, i.e. there is no need to describe what a pair of jeans does.
  •         Explain the product as clearly and concisely as possible – this means avoiding repetitive sentences and statements. It also means sticking to the point
  •         Explain the benefits – most buying decisions are made on the basis of benefits. Therefore, your product descriptions should not simply be a list of the technical specifications of the product. Instead, you should explain how the customer will benefit from owning the product.
  •         Include all information on the product – the last thing you want is for a customer to go to another website to find something out about the product because you didn’t give them that information on your website. If a customer does that, they might never come back to you to complete the purchase. Therefore, if the information is relevant to the customer, you should include it.
  •         Write for your customers – this might sound like an obvious thing to do, but many product descriptions on the internet are not aimed at customers. Instead, they give the seller’s perception of the product with very little regard to what the customer thinks. To write good product descriptions for your customers, you must first understand who your main customers are. You should then tailor each product description to that audience.
  •         Make the description easy to read – this includes writing in a way that is informal and conversational. In addition, you should structure the text in a way that is easy to read. For example, you might think some customers will want to read a detailed description of the product and/or its technical specifications. Don’t push this content on customers who are not interested, however. A way of avoiding this is to put the additional content behind a link or tab, only leaving a brief description in the main section.
  •         Use bullet points – following on from the last point, lists of benefits or key features will improve your product descriptions.
  •         Think about SEO – where it makes sense, include keywords in your product descriptions to help improve the page’s ranking in Google.
  •         Always use images – in product descriptions, images are almost always more important than the text that accompanies them. A good approach for adding images to products is to follow Amazon’s guidelines for sellers. After all, when it comes to selling online, Amazon knows what it is doing.

In general, product descriptions should be quick to read, they should keep the viewer on the page (rather than going elsewhere to get additional information), and they should encourage the viewer to make a purchase. The above tips will help you achieve this so you can sell more.

product description writing (Focus) 1K – 10K Medium Use minimum 4 times, in Para and headings
product description template (Sec.) 1K – 10K Low Use minimum 3 times, in Paragraphs
ecommerce product description(Sec.) 10 – 100 Medium Use minimum 2 times, in Paragraphs
ecommerce seo (LSI) 1K – 10K Low Use minimum 1 times, in Paragraphs
production optimization (LSI) 100 – 1K Low Use minimum 1 times, in Paragraphs

The Importance of Having Objectives for Your Website’s Pages

Our website should be an extension of the sales and marketing efforts of your business. In other words, if your website is not helping you attract and retain customers, there is something wrong. The best way to make your website effective at generating sales is to have clearly defined objectives on each page.

An objective is an action you want the visitor to take as a result of visiting the page or your website in general. Examples include:

  • Call your business
  • Visit your business
  • Send a query
  • Become a lead
  • Download something
  • Make a purchase
  • Register with your website
  • Sign up to your email list

All the examples above either generate an immediate sale or give you the opportunity of making the sale at a later date.

You Can Have More than One Objective Per Page

You don’t need to pick just one of the above for the pages on your website. In fact, it is better to offer multiple options relevant to the particular page, as well as multiple options per page.

For example, a visitor might research the products or services you offer but are not ready to buy immediately. In this situation, you might encourage them to sign up to your email list. In other words, this page will have two objectives depending on the visitor’s intentions.

The Importance of Defining a Page’s Objectives

Your website developer will be responsible for implementing the objectives on the pages, i.e. the developer will add the forms, call-to-action elements, shopping carts, maps, and more that will deliver on the page’s objective.

In addition, a good website developer will help create the right user flow, so the visitor gets presented with objective one and then objective two if objective one is not immediately applicable.

Defining the page’s objectives, however, is crucial to this process. Here are some examples using the objectives in the list above:

  • Call your business – include your phone number in a highly visible location on every page as well as including it as a call-to-action with the text on each page.
  • Visit your business – ensure there is a prominent and easy to use map on the contact page of your website and possibly also the home page.
  • Send a query – include a form that enables visitors to send a query. You should also ensure the form is in a highly visible location on each page.
  • Become a lead – include a positive and persuasive message as well as a prominent form encouraging the visitor to send you their details for your sales team to get back to them.
  • Download something – you have multiple options with this objective depending on the download. They include offering the download within the page, in a timed popup, or in a popup that appears when the visitor goes to leave your website.
  • Make a purchase – include large and highly visible Add to Cart buttons and ensure the checkout process is as easy and secure as possible.
  • Register with your website – make the registration option visible on all pages, give a compelling reason for registration, and make the registration process easy to complete.
  • Sign up to your email list – strategies for this objective include adding welcome mats, in-content calls-to-action, popups, and more.

Whatever industry you are in, and whatever type of website you have, every page should have a clear objective. By doing this, you are more likely to make it clear to the visitor what you want them to do next. This will improve the results you get from your website.

How You Can Get on the First Page of Google

How You Can Get First Page of Google

You have probably heard many people talk about how important it is to get on the first page of Google. After all, most research says the first page of Google gets 70-75 percent of the available clicks. What does getting on the first page of Google mean, though?

It means a lot of things, in fact. The easiest part is getting onto the first page of Google, ideally position one, for the name of your business. This is not enough in the real world of business as your name only catches those people who already know about you. What about all those people searching for keywords related to your industry?

There is a difficult truth to grasp when you consider this question. That truth is that in almost all industries, you won’t be able to get onto page one of Google for your industry’s main keywords. Why? Without getting too technical, it is because of the way Google works. It looks at the authority of a domain and how many links it has as well as about 200 other things. If your domain authority is lower than your competitors and you have fewer links, you won’t be able to beat them.

At least, you won’t be able to compete head-to-head with the big competitors using traditional methods. There are ways to get to page one of Google, however, if you are creative. In fact, there are four ways.

Getting to Page One of Google

The first thing is to forget about targeting the popular, high-traffic keywords – this is the traditional method described above. Leave the big competitors to fight over those keywords themselves.

While they are doing that, there are easier and much less costly strategies you can deploy.

Target Long-Tail Keywords

Long-tail keywords are typically more than two or three words. For example, one of the main keywords for a property management company might be:

“Houses for rent”

Examples of long-tail keywords, however, would be:

“Houses for rent in Mount Eden” or “houses for rent in Mount Eden under $600 per week”

Long-tail keywords like the examples above are easier to rank for. They also generate lower levels of traffic but that traffic will add up when you target a lot of them. In addition, long-tail keywords usually also have better conversion rates as they are used by people closer to a buying decision.

Start Blogging

Blogging is a good way of targeting long-tail keywords and attracting traffic from social media and links from other websites. To be successful, however, you need to do the following:

Blogs

  • Publish more posts than your competitors
  • Publish better quality posts
  • Ensure your posts are keyword focused

 

Use Google AdWords

Most search results pages worth targeting contain ads. Crucially, these ads dominate the top of those search results pages with up to four ads on display before the first organic search result. Therefore, if you want to get page one, use Google AdWords.

Get Featured on Other Websites

In many industries, it is also often possible to get featured on other websites that do appear on page one. One example is a review website. You will need to spend time reaching out to the authors of reviews on those websites, but getting into their reviews is an indirect way of getting onto page one. Another good example is in the property management industry, i.e. listing your properties on the main property portals.

By taking a more strategic and targeted approach to SEO, you can get onto page one of Google, whoever you are.

12 Ways to Boost Your Website Conversion Rate

Getting traffic is only one part of making your website successful, and it is not even the most important. Maximising your conversion rate is where you should focus most of your efforts. Here are 12 ways you can boost your website conversion rate.

1. Create Urgency

Your objective is to get visitors to your website to convert now. If they leave to think about it, they won’t come back. Creating urgency is a great way to encourage visitors to take immediate action. There are several ways of doing this including mentioning stock numbers or making the offer time limited. You can even add a countdown timer to your pages to make the urgency more real.

2. Optimise Forms

The forms on your website should be quick and easy to complete. This particularly applies to email opt-in forms – the more fields you ask visitors to complete, the less likely they will be to give you their email address.

3. Optimise the Checkout Process

Make sure your checkout process is intuitive and fast to prevent customers from starting it but not finishing it. It also helps to make your checkout look secure.

4. Add an Exit Popup

Exit popups are an excellent way of making a final pitch to your visitors before they leave your website. Depending on the conversion you want to achieve, they can significantly increase your conversion rate. The offer you make should be compelling plus you should follow the above points – make it time limited and optimise any forms you use.

5. Take Away Risk

Another effective way of increasing conversion rates is to remove doubt or worry from the minds of your visitors. You can do this by offering a guarantee – a 100 percent money back guarantee will be the most effective. Another tactic is to offer a free trial.

6. Add Testimonials

Nobody wants to be the first to try something so it is important you show customers your experience and standards of service through testimonials. Testimonials should be relatable to the customer and should not only be genuine but should also look genuine too.

7. Focus Above the Fold

The area of your website above the fold is the part of the screen that you can see without scrolling. This is where you should put your conversion elements including offers, buttons, and forms.

8. Keep Designs Simple and Distraction-Free

Simple designs often get the most conversions. There are a number of reasons for this including the fact that flashy designs do not help visitors make a buying decision. You should also remove all unnecessary distractions.

9. Personalise

Your conversion rate will improve the more personal you can make your content. You can do this through the copy on your website, plus you can use tools that geotarget your visitors. Geotargeting involves dynamically showing personalised content to your visitors based on their location. You should also personalise your emails as much as possible, particularly including the recipient’s name.

10. Use Dedicated Landing Pages

If you run PPC campaigns, you should use dedicated landing pages.

11. Remarketing

Remarketing helps you win back the people who visit your website but don’t convert. Assuming they plan to make a purchase from someone, remarketing helps increase the chances that it will be you.

12. Test and Measure

You firstly need to measure your website’s conversion rate then you should test all the strategies you use to see what works so you can make refinements.

Finally, treat conversion rate optimisation as an ongoing process that you continuously work to improve.

How you can grow web traffic without SEO

If you don’t have much budget but are looking for new ways to drive traffic other than SEO, email marketing, social media, or guest posting, then this article is for you.

In this article, I will show you how to drive targeted traffic and reach thousands of people for free via Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing, twisted guest blogging, and by partnering with others.

Kindle Select 90-Day Traffic Plan
Do you know that self-published books now represent 31% of e-book sales in the Amazon Kindle Store? Before the emergence of the Amazon Kindle Store and other similar online bookstores, you needed thousands of dollars and the help of a large publishing house to get a book published. This is now changed as anyone can publish a book within a day. In addition, this technique can be used to drive traffic to your website or blog.

When you publish your Kindle book, you can enrol the book in the Kindle Direct Publishing Select Program. This makes your book exclusive to the Kindle Store for 90 days. Amazon also includes it in the Kindle Owner’s Lending Library where thousands of targeted readers can borrow it for free. Furthermore, you can run a free promotion for a paid e-book for five days.

To drive traffic to your website through your Kindle book you can place a link directly inside the book. Another way of getting traffic is using free giveaways.

Twisted Guest Blogging
This is a unique approach that is very different from typical guest blogging – this is the reason it is given the title “twisted”.

According to Neil Patel, one blogger recorded a 203% increase in traffic growth in 2013 when his guest posts were featured on high-traffic and relevant blogs.

So, how did that blogger get thousands of people to read his guest post? Here are the three steps he followed for guest posting:

  • Research blogs with social influence
  • Checking the top-ranking websites
  • Pitch them one by one

The objective is to get featured by one of the blogs after it accepts your guest post.

Partner with Others
You can place a badge of a company on your website or blog, or share your content with other blogs, in exchange for them driving traffic back to your blog. This approach involves partnering with them. There are many popular blogs that are looking for quality content and if you provide it to them, they will have no issues linking back to your website.

In order to get this partnership, you must consistently reach out to potential websites and blogs. Most probably you will get one yes out of every 10 blogs you hit.