During these unique Covid-19 times, more and more people are shopping online. I know I am, I avoid going out in public. Honestly though, I was doing that before the virus because I prefer spending my free time doing something I like, and shopping is not one of them.
I spend a lot of time online, whether it is shopping or working and I see many websites that need to be redesigned or just a little updating. However some need a complete overhaul.
How do you know your website needs to be redesigned? A few key elements to look for include:
- Visually Appealing – A website that looks neat and modern can say a lot about your business. It needs to be easy to navigate on both desktop and mobile devices.
- Content – The visual appeal of your website draws people in, but it is the content that keeps them there. The copy needs to be simple and effective, written with your target audience in mind. You only have about 3 seconds to grab someone’s attention, so you need to make it count. Utilizing bullet points is an effective way to convey valuable information quickly.
- Technical updates – Your website needs to be updating each time the developer of your theme or plugin makes an update to the software. This applies to WordPress website where each plugin can have a different developer. Each time WordPress makes an update, the developer needs to update their plugins. If these updates are not made, eventually WordPress and your plugins will lose compatibility causing issues on the site or even causing it to crash completely.
- Security – If your website is not using HTTPS protocol then it is not secure, and Google will penalize your search ranking. This means any information that is transmitted from you to your customer, or your customer to you, is vulnerable to being hacked. You should never take payments via your website if you are not using HTTPS. Most search engines will put up a warning before your site can load stating that it is not secure, which will cause potential customers to click away fast!
- Opt in form – You should have a way to collect email addresses of those visiting your site who might want to receive further information on your products or services. People will more readily give you their email address if you offer them something of value in return, like a free download with tips.
- Usability – Be sure your site is not overwhelming with long copy. The idea is for customers to be able to look at your site and navigate to the information they are looking for quickly. If they have to read long paragraphs of text, they will leave your site to find a simpler one. User interface and ease of navigation are top priorities for any website.
- Load times – A recent study found that the average human attention span has fallen from 12 seconds in 2000 (about the time smartphones hit the scene) to eight seconds today. A goldfish’s attention span is 9 seconds! (Source digitalinformationworld.com) Google rewards sites that load faster by giving them better search rankings. You can test the load speed of your website by going to Google PageSpeed Insights and entering your web page URL. It will analyze your site and give you suggestions to speed it up.
- Web host – Using the lowest priced web host you can find is not always the best idea. It may save you a little money now, but it might cost you later when your website is down through no fault of your own, or your site is so slow customers click away before it fully loads. Web hosting should be based on your individual needs . I recommend using SiteGround. They keep their systems updated and their customer service is easy wonderful.
With so many people moving to online shopping, you need to be sure your website can handle the new attention it may be receiving from online shoppers. Making smaller changes now will save you money in the long run. Why not take advantage of the current online world we are living in and update your website to keep your visitors interested long enough to click that Add to Cart button?
Is your website in need of some TLC? Schedule a call with me today and we can talk about it.