10 quick and easy ways to improve your website performance

Think of your website as your digital storefront. You don’t want people to walk past and ignore it or window-shop. You want people to come directly to your store, enter, stay for a while and leave feeling that they had a great experience buying the most amazing item. 
Here are 10 quick and cost-effective website improvements you can make to your site to ensure it attracts and converts customers: 

1. Have Calls-to-Action (CTAs) on your website

When you have product or service descriptions on your website, add CTAs to tell your visitors, in clear language, exactly what to do. This is one of the most cost-effective website improvements you can make to improve online conversions. A CTA can be as simple as “click here” or “download now” - depending on the product or service you are promoting.

2. Don't have blurry or pixelated images

There’s nothing quite as distracting as pixelated or blurry images on a website. A visitor may not even read the content you have carefully planned out, just because your images don’t look quite right, creating a missed opportunity.

Also, however, do not upload extremely large images with a high resolution. They will take too long to download and people will not wait around.

Make sure you upload crisp, clear, web-optimised images with a resolution of 72DPI to get those views. Ask your web designer to help you optimise your images for web use. 

TIP: If you don’t have the budget for stock images, you can browse free stock image libraries here and here to find what you are looking for.

3. Ensure all your links work

When a visitor to your website clicks on a link and it doesn’t work, they get frustrated and may leave your site - after all, why bother browsing something that doesn’t work? This will hurt your page traffic.

Always test for broken links and get some page insights to help you optimise your website and get that well-deserved traffic. It’s a continuous process but will help you improve online conversions in the long run.

4. Keep your website up-to-date

When people browse the web, they are looking for relevant, up-to-date information. There’s nothing worse than landing on a website with clearly outdated information. Website content has evolved so much over the last few years that people will spot outdated content an internet-mile away.

Make sure you do regular content audits and keep your content up to date (with both your customers and Google’s SEO) to improve your brand awareness. It isn’t necessary to rewrite your whole website, but some cost-effective website improvements, such as sprucing up sections of copy will go a long way.

You wouldn’t want to miss a sale or opportunity just because you forgot to update your contact details - that would be outright embarrassing, wouldn’t it?

5. Make sure you have Google Analytics installed

Do you know who is visiting your website, where traffic originates from and how old they are? If the answer is yes, well done. You’re using Google Analytics.

If you don’t know, now may be a good time to start using it. Not only will it help you gain a better idea of who is visiting your website, but it will also help you gauge the quality of your content based on time spent on your pages, or even point out the most popular pages, all adding up to better online conversions.

Adding Google Analytics to your website is really easy, but if you don’t feel comfortable doing it yourself, your web design agency can help you add it, easy peasy.

6. Make sure your images have ALT text

Search engines don’t “read” images like they do with content or text. But, you can help these engines “see” your images by adding ALT text whenever your upload images to your website or blog - adding ALT text also helps when an image doesn’t load to show the description or helps visually impaired people understand what the image is.

You can add ALT text within your CMS (like WordPress) in the “ALT text” box when uploading an image, or, if you’re working in HTML, you can add ALT text as follows: <img src=” alt=””> or you can check your ALT tags with this handy tool.

Three handy tips to consider when adding ALT text:
  1. Keep your text concise, yet descriptive.
  2. Write ALT text for humans. Provide easy to understand descriptions so they can understand what the image is showing.
  3. Don’t include keywords if they do not describe the image in any way.

Restaurant Italian dish

Best practice for ALT text:

Bad: ALT=""

Better: ALT="food"

Best: ALT="Italian spaghetti and tune dish"

Avoid: ALT="white plate with Italian spaghetti and tune dish on brown wooden table next to some raw spaghetti"

7. Make sure your page titles are not too long

Your page title is the main text that describes your webpage and should be under 70 characters (ideally 65) along with relevant keywords. If it is too long, your page visitors won’t be able to see what the page is about.

You can check your page title length here, and determine whether you can add or cut down some text.

8. Make sure your pages have a good meta descriptions

Your meta description isn’t only important for on-page SEO, but also for search engines to show your summarised content when the relevant keywords are entered. Think of your meta description as a snippet of sorts for your future visits to see if this is what they are looking for.

Ideally, your meta description should be under 160 characters long to display optimally. You can test and check your meta description here.

9. Don't do keyword stuffing

While using keywords in your content is great for SEO, you can also use too many keywords. This is known as keyword stuffing; an attempt to manipulate site rankings in Google search results. Overloading on keywords could lead to your site being flagged as webspam.

Here are the five most relevant places to add your selected keywords to your website:
  • Titles
  • Descriptions
  • Headings 
  • Titles & ALT Text
  • URLs

10. Remove video suggestions at the end of your YouTube video

Don’t want to divert your well-earned web traffic away from your site when you embed a video onto your website? You can easily remove the video suggestions at the bottom of an embedded video and keep those eyeballs on your pages.

When embedding a video from YouTube, follow these easy steps:

1. On the video page on YouTube, click "Share."
2. Click "Embed."
3. Uncheck the "Show suggested videos when the video finished" box.
4. Copy and paste the <iframe> embed code into your webpage.

If you follow these quick and easy guidelines and use the handy links provided, you’ll be well on your way to attracting more visitors, keeping them on your website and improving your online conversions. Good luck!

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