This is a guest article by Nick Stamoulis. You too can be part of this great knowledge sharing community. Take a look at our guest blogging guidelines.
Search engine optimization is the practice of making changes in different areas of your website and web presence overall so that the search engines can find you and deliver targeted visitors to your website. A properly implemented SEO campaign will result in an increase in quality traffic to a website. However, that’s where the SEO power ends. SEO can get a visitor to your website, but the quality of the website itself will determine whether or not that visitor takes the steps necessary to convert or bounces right out of there.
In order to get the most out of an SEO campaign it’s important to have a website that:
Is Visually Appealing
Who says that looks don’t matter? They certainly matter when it comes to website design. A website should be clean looking and without unnecessary distractions. Hard to read fonts, a blinding color scheme, and pop up ads can all contribute towards a visitor thinking, “I’m outta here!” A website should look modern. If it looks like it was designed in 1997 that reflects poorly upon your company. It looks like you are just as outdated as your website and that you don’t care to make the effort or spend the money to upgrade.
Is User Friendly
The first thing that a visitor notices is page load time. The days of dial up are long gone and Internet users are impatient and have grown accustomed to receiving information at lightning speed. It’s important to always be aware of your page load time and make necessary adjustments to improve upon it. Anything more than a few seconds provides a bad user experience. Another big part of website usability is the navigation and internal linking structure. It should be easy for a visitor to navigate a website to find what they need. Users have grown accustomed to finding a primary navigation with drop downs to all of the main internal pages at the top of a website. Breadcrumbs also contribute towards a good user experience because they leave a “trail” of where the visitor has been so that they know where they are in the grand scheme of the website.
Provides Only Quality Content
The content of a website is more than the text. It’s everything that makes up the site. Some website owners think that they should get the most out of this website “real estate” by cramming as much in as possible. Don’t do that. Website content should be about quality content that is most relevant to what the website provides. Extraneous “clutter”, like too many images, is an unnecessary distraction. Some of the best websites are quite simple.
Makes It Easy To Convert
The goal of a website is to increase conversions, whether that is sales or leads. The goal of an e-commerce site is obviously to get the visitor to purchase something. In order for the visitor to feel comfortable making a purchase, they need to trust you. Provide contact info and a clear return/exchange policy. The shopping cart experience should be simple and straightforward. The goal of many B2B sites is to get a lead form filled out so that the sales team can follow up. It isn’t a game of 20 questions. Only ask for the most important information like name, email, phone number, and reason for contacting. Too many questions are annoying to answer and the visitor probably doesn’t want to give you too much information anyway. Whether the purpose of the site is to generate sales or leads, you should include clear call to actions throughout the site encouraging the visitor to make the move.