Blog Audio: Read/listen time: 4 minutes
In this 5 part series about ‘Unforgiveable Website Mistakes’ I discuss some common mistakes business owners make that stop them succeeding. Fortunatley, all of these issues can be avoided by employing a competent web designer.
This first instalment of the series covers the following five points, click on them to jump straight to that section. As always, if you have any comments, improvements or spot some errors please let me know.
- Not carrying out search engine optimisation (SEO)
- Not using well placed ‘call to action’ in content
- Not delivering valuable content
- Not having social media presence
- Not using social media sharing buttons
1. Not Carrying Out Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
Often a tell-tale sign that a company has built their website themselves, or they have employed a cheap amateur or relation to build their site for them to save money.
Even the mostly well-crafted site without proper optimisation of content, meta descriptions, titles etc. will struggle in the search engine rankings. If your site is to be found then you really must search engine optimise your site and its content.
If you don’t know how to do this then find a reputable designer or agency who can provide these services. Many people are reluctant to pay for SEO, but without it your site is largely worthless. There are a host of free and pay for use tools out there which can give you an idea about the SEO health of your website. One such analytics tool is SEO Quake which can give you some great feedback about your site.
If your site is running on a content management system such as Drupal or WordPress, there are some great little modules and plugins that can help to make your life easier.
Drupal: SEO Checklist – Provides checklist of SEO activities and modules.
WordPress: Yoast SEO Plugin – Gives SEO optimisation and checking tools.
The purpose of your website is likely to make some kind of conversion. By conversion I mean that you want the person reading and interacting with your page not to stop and leave once they have finished but to go to a next step. That next step may be to contact you, make a purchase or any number of different things that depend upon your business.
Having great content is imperative, but it’s also so important to ensure that you have a call to action in those great pages. Make it easy for the viewer to move forward. Without call to actions your site isn’t doing its job!
Would you benefit from help with your calls to action?
]Your tailored solution is just one message away. Get in contact, get the ball rolling and we can have the whole process finished painlessly, cheaply and quickly.
3. Not Delivering Valuable content
The ultimate sin. You may have heard the phrase ‘content is king’. Well content isn’t absolutely ‘everything’ but it’s pretty much the single most important aspect of your site.
From having sufficient volume of content to carry out effective SEO to ensuring you use the right vocabulary and niche vocabulary is important. Not only is content important for getting visitors to your site in the first place but it’s important that your content gives your visitors what they want when they arrive.
Pack your content with useful information and links and leave your customer pointed in the right direction whether that’s to you or someone else. Too many customers post generic happy talk about their company and fail to give in depth information about their services because they ‘don’t have time’. Your website is a critical part of your sales process and ensures you have a sales pipeline looking forwards.
Set aside enough time to not only generate great content but ensure you revisit it regularly to ensure it is up to date and to keep your site fresh. Google loves fresh!
Learning Resource: If your copy writing skill needs improving then check out this link to Smashing Magazine. It’s a really useful article.
4. Not Having a Social Media Presence
Social Media can be a massive drain on time resources when you are a small company or freelancer. There is a balance to be struck between what you output on social media and the returns gained from it. However, search engines such as google now place a tremendous importance upon social media in determining where your site ranks against others.
Google views your social media activity as an indicator as to your level of authority, which plays a part in where you appear in search engines. Keep your social media alive and your site will place higher. Leave it to fester and your site will slip down the results pages.
Account Signup Links
- Twitter Signup
- Google + Signup
- LinkedIn Signup
- Facebook for Business Signup
- Slideshare for Business Signup
- Pinterest for Business Signup
So we have discussed how important a social media campaign is, a fundamental part of this is to have social sharing buttons on your site. Not always attractive and sometimes a bit distracting, these buttons really matter.
Each important page of your site such as landing pages and blog pages etc. must have sharing buttons. So what do these buttons do? Social sharing buttons give your visitors the chance to share your content i.e. Tweet about it, share it on LinkedIn, plus 1 the page on Google +. The more sharing of your content that happens the more new people will find you. Not only that, the more shares a page has the more importance google will attribute to that page in the search results, getting your information seen by your prospective clients and customers.
For WordPress there are a few great social media plugins available :
For Drupal I recommend using the following social media module:
- Easy Social Module
For HTML based websites you can add social media sharing links directly. All the big players will give you free code to add sharing buttons to your site. Here are a few for you:
Coming Up in Part 2
In the second part of this series I will discuss the following items. Check back soon and please do feel free to comment.
- Too Much Happy Talk
- Keyword Stuffing
- Old Styles & Conventions
- Flash Animation
- Visible Lack of Commitmen