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A website can make or break a business, but many management teams are unsure of exactly how to evaluate the success of a site. Not only are many of the metrics difficult to track, but the industry jargon can be daunting as well. Here are some tips that you can use to assess your website and determine if it is time to make some changes so that you can reach your customer base.
Setting Clear Goals
One of the most common mistakes that business owners make is not setting clear goals before creating a website. Unlike many other forms of marketing, websites are typically designed to do much more than spread brand awareness or advertise a single product. Owners need to decide if they want to make sales directly through their sites, establish a strong first touchpoint with potential customers, or simply keep their current clients well-informed. Until you have established a list of goals, it will be nearly impossible to determine if your website is helping your company or eating into your resources.
A Look at Visitors and Conversion Rates
Tracking visitors is a simple way to evaluate if a website is picking up steam, but it is not the only number you should be looking at. Visitors who are only on the site for a few seconds before leaving can actually hurt your rankings on the search engine results pages. A site’s conversion rate is generally seen as the most important metric, and this number is determined by what percentage of your visitors become paying customers or advance to the next touchpoint. As you continue to make changes to your website, you need to keep a close eye on both the conversion rates and the total number of visitors in order to determine the success of your online presence.
Many different problems can destroy a website and cause the conversion rates to plummet. Even a seemingly minor issue such as a misplaced file or broken link could result in a huge percentage of your traffic leaving the website. Another important variable to keep in mind is the loading times of your pages. If the page takes more than a few seconds to load, then your potential customer might take their business elsewhere. On some websites, smaller mistakes and errors end up driving off more visitors than any huge design flaws.
Signs It Is Time for an Overhaul
As your business continues to grow, you might begin to notice a few signs that it is time to contact a professional who can help to give your website an overhaul by offering you certain web development services. Some of the most common signs of a failing website include low conversion rates, fluctuations in visitors, ongoing errors, broken links, missing media files, and unreliable hosting. You also need to think about how much time and energy you are investing into your website and what kind of returns you are seeing. Even if you have a beautiful website, it might not be very cost-effective if you are spending dozens of hours a week maintaining the site. At some point, it may become more cost-effective to hand at least some of the responsibilities over to a professional designer.
Almost every business in the world will benefit from having a strong online presence, large social media following, and eye-catching website. After all, that is how you connect with customers! Those who are still unsure of what they can do to improve their online presence should consider having a website audit carried by an experienced web developer. During these audits, the developer can come up with a list of simple fixes that will increase your traffic, boost your conversion rates, and improve your overall visibility.