When last did you check the bounce rate for your website? If you don’t know what that means, it’s the percentage of people who only view one page of your site before clicking away. It’s easy enough to work out what’s putting your visitors off. And it’s just as easy to make the necessary changes to reduce your bounce rate.
Give you website an audit by asking the following questions:
- Is the navigation simple and logical?
A website that’s hard to navigate will leave your visitors confused and frustrated. These are some of the features of websites with bad navigation:
- Main navigation links are scattered around the site or buried in text.
- Link text is unclear and hard to understand.
- Visual elements don’t tell the user where they are or what action to take.
Think of your navigation as a map that new visitors can use to explore your website without getting lost. Keep you main menu down to a few tabs and use sub-menus to organise your pages logically. Put your menu in an obvious place (right at the top of the page, for example), and be consistent by keeping it in the same place on every page.
Of course you can try something different with your layout, but don’t sacrifice good navigation for the sake of appearances.
- Does your website look cluttered?
If you have too many flashy elements competing for your visitor’s attention, you’re bound to put them off. The faster your visitors can find the information they’re looking for, the more inclined they’ll be to spend time on your site. If you’re doing any of these things, you might have a problem:
- Plastering ads all on every available inch of white space.
- Using pop-ups that cover your content and annoy your visitors.
- Wasting valuable space on unnecessary content.
Place ads on your site discreetly in the appropriate place. Use white space around elements to draw attention to the content you want to promote. Make sure only the most essential content has a prominent position on your pages.
- How well is your content structured?
Think about the journey you want potential customers to take on your site. After landing on a particular page, what action do you want them to take that will (hopefully) lead to a sale? If your content is structured like this, you’ll keep losing out on potential sales:
- You spread content across different pages when it should appear on the same page.
- You forget to include content that explains the purpose of the page.
- You don’t add a Call to Action (CTA) so the customer knows what to do next.
Start by grouping content together in a way that makes sense. Give your customers all the necessary information they’ll need up front and save them from searching for it. Use headings and sub-headings with keywords so that visitors who skim your content can quickly find what they’re looking for. Add CTA’s to encourage users to take the next step in the buyer journey.
- Do your force users to register before they can view your content?
Even if your website is designed to collect leads, you shouldn’t force users to sign up before they can access your content. If they’re not at that stage in their journey where they’re ready to commit, you’ll only put them off and could miss out on a sale.
Stop using pop-ups that block your content and won’t allow a user to proceed until they’ve signed up. Google isn’t fond of these pop-ups either and it hurt your ranking. If you do want your visitors to supply you with their details, keep your form as simple and possible.
- Is your website easy on the eyes?
Although it’s possible for anyone to make a website these days, it doesn’t hurt to get advice from a professional graphic designer. The colours, typography and layout of your website can make or break your success online. If you’re using the wrong colours, or fonts that are hard to read, you’re doing your business a disservice.
If your budget allows for it, get a designer on board. If you really can’t afford it, spend some time learning about website design from free resources online. You can start with our blog on the Ingredients of a Successful Website.
And when you do have the budget, get a designer in to give your website a refresh and a bit of polish.
- When last did you add new content to your website?
Updating your site with fresh content on a regular basis will reassure visitors that you’re still in business and make Google happy.
A great way to add new content to your site is by blogging on a regular basis. But, you must be prepared to keep it up. It won’t do your business any good if you let months go by between posts. Spend some time brainstorming ideas and then set up a schedule—and stick to it!
Follow these fixes and the end result will be a website that your visitors enjoy using. If you need some assistance or would prefer to have a professional work on your website, give Web Changes a call. We do free website audits and would be happy to give you advice on your web design and digital marketing.