Website optimization is the process of making sure that your website is accessible and easy to use. This means making sure that the text, images, and videos are optimized for display on all devices, that the website works smoothly and is error-free, and that the site’s structure is optimized for search engines. All of these factors play a role in increasing website traffic and converting website visitors into customers.
There are a number of different techniques that can be used to achieve website optimization for SEO, including on-page optimization, off-page optimization, and internal link building. In this article, we’ll discuss each of these in detail and explain the benefits that they can offer your business.
Ready to start optimizing your website? Let’s get started!
What is website optimization?
Website optimization is the practice of implementing various controlled tactics to improve a website’s ability to drive their business goals. In order to improve the performance, online businesses use A/B testing to experiment with different page forms to understand which differences and changes result in better conversions.
Additionally, website optimization for search engines can help a website be as accessible to users and search engine friendly as possible. This means that it should be designed to load quickly, provide helpful information and be easy to navigate. There are a few things you can do to improve your website’s accessibility and search engine optimization (SEO):
- Make sure your site is well organized and easy to understand
- Use clear, concise language when writing your content
- Choose a design style that’s visually appealing and fits your brand
- Minimize the number of ads on your page, and choose those that are relevant to your website’s topic.
Why is website optimization important?
Website optimization is important for a number of reasons. First and foremost, it can help you rank higher on Google and other search engines – which means that more people will be able to find your website. In addition, it can increase your website’s traffic and conversion rates, which will lead to increased profits.
Moreover, online companies need to optimize their website in order to succeed. Without optimizing a website, online businesses won’t be able to rank well on search engines and stand out to remain profitable. Website optimization also assists online companies to acquire quantifiable data that makes it easier to develop plans that will deliver a significant return on investment (ROI) in addition to assisting a website to stay at the top of Google Search Engine results.
Website optimization is important because it:
- Increases a page’s conversion rate
- Improves the brand visibility of a business
- Increases website traffic
- Results in additional leads and revenue
- Enhances the overall user experience
Benefits of website optimization:
One of the most important reasons to optimize your website is to improve traffic and conversion rates. By making sure that your website is easy to find and navigate, you’ll get more people clicking through to read your content and take the desired action (buying a product, signing up for your email marketing list, etc.). In addition, optimizing your website for search engines can help you rank higher in Google searches and bring in more potential customers from all over the world.
Another big benefit of website optimization is brand awareness. By putting your website on the first page of Google when people are looking for related topics, you’ll get a boost in traffic that will help you build better relationships with potential customers. And finally, by creating positive online reviews, you can build even stronger customer relationships and improve customer loyalty.
In general, optimizing your website can provide the following benefits:
- Increase traffic and conversions: Optimizing your website can help you achieve higher traffic and conversion rates, as people will be more likely to visit your site if it’s easy to use and looks modern
- Boost SEO rankings: Having a well-optimized website will give you better search engine ranking, which will increase the visibility of your site and help you attract more potential customers
- Reduce costs: By reducing the amount of time required to maintain your website, you’ll save money in terms of both manpower and resources
- Increase revenue: By focusing on content optimization, layout design, and functionality you can increase the revenue that you generate from online sales.
Step by Step Guide to Optimize Your Website
Website optimization follows the same techniques and patterns that are used in conversion rate optimization (CRO), and is grounded in a scientific approach. Below we highlight a three step approach to optimizing your website.
Step 1: Determine optimization goals
First, you should determine what the objective of your website optimization is. For example,
- Is it because you want to boost your website content through optimization?
- Or do you have good content but lacking the SEO elements for your website optimization?
Businesses will have different SEO goals and objectives which will all require a specific approach to optimize their content. If, for example, you have an e-commerce website, you may want to utilize an approach that can help you determine how to increase purchases and the average order values on your site.
Step 2: Conduct research with A/B testing
To accomplish these optimization goals, a website should conduct quantitative and qualitative research on key pages of their website which have the largest impact on their end goal.
One example of a page that can be valuable when conducting A/B testing is their homepage. Home page is a good place to start as much of the inbound traffic will arrive on this page first. When visitors do land on the homepage, make sure they quickly understand what the business is offering in terms of products or services. If this happens immediately, people will likely move further into the website.
Determine the best way to impact your overall objective. Once you know what you want to achieve, you should identify what the underperforming parts of individual pages are and begin generating ideas on how to test and eventually improve various elements.
Generate a list of variables you want to experiment with an A/B test. The changes and tests you want to run should be created in multiple variations and run conducted using an A/B split testing tool.
Conduct the experiment and test your options. When conducting the experiment and tests, it’s essential that during the process enough data and information is gathered to make a well informed decision that is statistically significant. Data driven decisions will make sure you are not guessing when it comes to your business.
Step 3: Analyze data, and make adjustments
Gain information, come to conclusions, and then revamp your test and conduct multiple iterations of the test if needed. The results you gain from your test will allow you to understand how the changes you made impact your website and its performance. A variation that produces positive results, will become the new baseline for that particular webpage. However, this doesn’t mean you should be satisfied with it long term. You should continue to run tests on different aspects of the ‘winning’ webpage to continue to update it and increase its performance.
Remember, that even if a variation does not provide positive results, it can still be a learning experience. It will ultimately provide you with a direction that you should or should not go in to improve your website.
Website optimization for search engines can provide opportunities to discover measurable business benefits if done correctly. By collecting valuable data through website optimization techniques, you can begin selecting features that help your website perform better, and help you reach a certain objective.
Overall, optimizing your website can help increase the amount of visitor conversions you get, such as email subscribers, readers, or paying customers. Moreover, improved conversion rates will lead to a greater return on investment (ROI) for your various campaigns, including: Google AdWords, social media, and email marketing.
The goals of website optimization for search engines
Each website will have a different goal. It depends on their type of business, their target audience, and the desired action the website wants to receive from the audience, such as a purchase, filling out a form, or reading an article.
Examples of some website optimization goals can include:
- An online publication website conducts website optimization to boost content and the number of articles read by a visitor.
- An online store conducts website optimization in an effort to increase the percentage of people that complete checkouts.
- An online software company optimizes its website in order to increase the number of people signing up for their product’s free trial.
- An online insurance company conducts website optimization in an effort to generate potential leads for their insurance coverage.
- A fundraising website optimizes their website and donation form in order to encourage more donations.
How to know if your website optimization for SEO efforts are succeeding
There are key factors that can help you determine whether your SEO and website optimization efforts are effective. Whereas, these key performance indicators (KPIs) show how well your website is performing overall, as well as areas that you may need to focus on to improve its performance. A great way to monitor the success of your campaign is by using tools like Google Analytics, Google Search Console, as well as third-party SEO auditing software.
To get you started, let’s take a look at four areas to monitor to see if your website optimization efforts are paying off.
1. Website traffic
Your SEO efforts aren’t working if your website isn’t getting traffic, plain and simple. Therefore, because SEO is based on strict regulations that assist search engines to rank you higher in search results and subsequently attract more traffic, we may draw this conclusion. When it grows, that demonstrates you’re doing something right from an SEO standpoint.
You can track your website traffic sources and the number of visitors from each with Google Analytics. Additionally, Google Search Console will also give you insights regarding your organic traffic and what key terms your site traffic is finding you with.
2. Time on page
Your website may have a low time on page before beginning SEO. This might be due to low-quality content that doesn’t appeal to the user or that fails to match the search query’s intent. Ensuring that the quality of your content is high is one of the most important aspects of SEO.
You’ll be able to tell if your website optimization efforts are working or not, as your time on page slowly increases or stays the same. Additionally, as time on page can be a positive signal for Google, you may also see your organic traffic increase as Google will realize that users find the content useful.
Google Analytics allows you to see how long an average website visitors stay on particular pages.
3. Bounce rate
The percentage of individuals that leave your site after viewing just one page is referred to as a website’s bounce rate. This typically indicates that the user went back to Google search results after failing to find what they were looking for on your website.
Having a high bounce rate can send negative signals to Google which may end up impacting your rankings. That being said, having a bounce rate may not be a bad thing, as it could also indicate that your content served the exact need of the search query. Best thing to do is have a look at the average bounce rate for your specific industry.
Google Analytics shows you this percentage.
4. Conversion rate
Your conversion rate may be the most important optimization metric to monitor. Whereas conversion typically means that you are succeeding with your digital marketing efforts and getting some sort of leads or sales. If you notice that your conversions are increasing, your optimization efforts are working properly.
The three other areas that we mentioned above will contribute to your conversion rate optimization efforts as they will increase website traffic and keep that traffic on your page longer. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean that your conversions will increase. Therefore, make sure to look at your call to action copy, as well as examine the friction points that may be in the way of potential buyers proceeding down your sales funnel.
10 ways to optimize your website
Website optimization can also include other aspects of your website like improving the speed, responsiveness and reliability of the overall website’s performance. These aspects also contribute to the overall goal of the website as it will help increase the authority of the website, and how a search engine views the website. Increasing the overall ranking of it and driving additional traffic.
Finally, poor website performance including issues such as latency or errors, can restrict the accessibility of visitors to complete tasks or actions that they want to on the website. Resulting in visitors existing the site, and lost opportunities to convert them into customers.
To ensure your website is optimized to the fullest, focus on the following 10 optimization tips:
1. Titles and headings:
Make sure your title and header tags are optimized. They should be clear, concise, and easy to understand. Use short, descriptive titles that accurately reflect the content of your article. Moreover, make sure to conduct keyword research and use key terms and phrases in your titles and headings, as Google puts more emphasis on words included in these areas. This means you will have an easier time ranking for particular terms.
From a user experience perspective, make sure that your titles are truthful and actually describe what the page is about. Your audience will hate nothing more than clicking on a title just to find out that the blog doesn’t even answer the question that was in the title.
Remember, it is important to keep your title tags shorter so search engines don’t truncate them. Keep your title tag between 50-160 characters, unique and click-worthy.
2. Photos and images:
Use high-quality photos that help illustrate your points. Take care to choose images that fit with the overall tone and style of your website. While using images it is essential that they are small in size (we shoot for under 150Kb per image) and can load quickly. To optimize images, make sure to present them on your website in next gen formats, compress the file, and change the dimensions to a photo. Remember, best practices suggest staying away from using PNG files on your website.
3. Lead capture elements:
Make it easy for visitors to sign up for your email list or leave comments on your articles. Include prominently placed lead capture elements like form fields and a “comment” button. By optimizing lead generation elements on your website, you can reduce friction points for your visitor, and improve your engagement rate. Moreover, by improving these forms you will also improve your conversion rate.
4. Call to action:
Call to actions should be optimized in order to clearly state what visitors need to do in order to take advantage of your offer or access the content you’ve published. Specify how long it will take them to finish the task, whether they need any inputs from them before proceeding, and whether there are any potential risks involved (like filling out a form with their personal information).
5. Website navigation:
Create logical, easy-to-follow website navigation that lets readers navigate through all the important sections of your site without getting lost. Stick to simple menus with clearly marked sections, avoid overwhelming users with too many options at once, and make sure all menu items lead directly into relevant content.
6. Mobile first:
Make sure that your site looks good on mobile devices, using optimized fonts and images that will still look good when viewed on a large screen is essential. You also want to make it easy for users to navigate, using buttons and icons that are easy to tap on a touchscreen device.
Overall, you will want to ensure that your website is responsive to different screen sizes, and that it loads quickly and correctly for people using mobile devices. To check your mobile usability and optimization efforts, use Google’s page speed insights tool.
7. Internal links:
Make sure you are using relevant internal links throughout the content. This will help with user experience by adding additional information they may find useful. Moreover, internal links will help your website visitors stay on your site longer, and thus reduce the site’s bounce rate.
Internal links also help search engine crawlers find new content on your website and index it. Additionally, internal links will provide additional context to search engines so they can further understand your content, and rank it better.
8. High-quality content:
Make sure that all your content is well-written and easy to understand. Use keywords throughout your site to help it rank better and thus increase website traffic. Keywords will help get web pages ranking for the correct topics and thus ensure that your content is being displayed on the correct search engine result pages (SERPs). Overall it is important to follow content writing for SEO best practices, to ensure your content drives the maximum amount of traffic possible to your website.
At the end of the day, SEO can not alone attract visitors to your website. A well written content is also being constantly searched by users. For instance, if Google directs one of your target audience to your website but your content has many grammatical errors, spelling mistakes, then that also reflects poorly on Google and the visitor. Therefore, it is crucial to create unique content and provide value to the user.
9. Landing pages:
Landing pages are a good place to start with when wondering how to boost content through website optimization. One reason is because they often are the first page high-quality traffic will see after being sent by ads, emails, or social media links. Website optimization for SEO can also be done on multi-page processes, for things such as a free trial signup, a checkout funnel, or any other multi-page form that may exist on the website.
10. Page load speeds
Page loading speed is an important factor when it comes to increasing visitors to your sites. In simple terms, if your page doesn’t load within a few seconds, it will significantly increase chances of visitors leaving your site. Therefore, slow webpages can decrease your ability to grow your engagement and conversion. Therefore, page speed is an important ranking factor for both desktop and mobile.
Key takeaways: Website optimization
Just having a website for your company is not enough in the current highly competitive digital age. Whereas a website needs to account for search engines, its ideal audience and customers, as well as its overall goals and objectives. This means ensuring all aspects of a website are optimized and carefully constructed.
By establishing search engine optimization goals before you get started with your website optimization will allow you to have the most success. By understanding what you want to achieve and accomplish, you can tailor your actions to achieve your results. To do this, you can follow through our website optimization guide and ensure that you are tracking the correct metrics and using the best techniques.
Clear Door SEO is an SEO agency in Portland Oregon providing optimization services to improve your website’s overall performance. If you would like to find out more about how we can help you succeed than contact us today!