Do you know that Google gets nearly 6-billion search queries every single day? And the numbers are rising fast. This proves that search engines and SEO are a part of our lives now.
And how about the fact that 1 in 4 people worldwide have – and will continue to – use social media this year? And this proves that social media is topping our minds too.
As the owner of a business website or blog, you can’t afford to have a poorly designed web presence that isn’t 100% optimized to capture the search engine and social media traffic that’s available to you currently.
Here Are At Least 6 Website Mistakes You Can Immediately Avoid
1. Inappropriate “About” Page
If a visitor finds your content interesting, they’re very likely to read the “About” page to get a sense of your credibility or at least to know who you are. This fact offers you a great opportunity to make a lasting positive impression as well as connection with them.
What to include in an “About” page:
- Should have picture of you (and your team members if applicable).
- Starting from your current position and brand value, tell the reader a short story about the journey you took toward creating your brand.
- A quick brief about your vision and history (personal blogs can just include the day the site launched).
- Let one of your old customer share some space on this page as a strong vouch for your brand.
- Focus on “You” language as it pertains to the reader’s reasons for visiting your site
- Invite to connect on social networks. Use cool looking social media icons and share buttons.
Read this great blog post for information: 6 About Us Pages That Are Probably Better Than Yours
And these are some crazy awesome about pages I couldn’t resist sharing with you.
The nerdery – The way they presented the huge team, copy & call, I couldn’t stop admiring the nerds’ job.
FortyOneTwenty – How subtly loud & clean. Didn’t take a second to make me love the clutter-free page.
Jared Christensen – The right humor throughout & you’d want to work with him. It shows someone has the right work-life balance and have fun with what they do. (it seems to me)
2. Ignoring the Meta Tags & Microdata
Even if Google seems to pick random text for search snippets, meta tags still hold huge value to give users a brief synopsis about each of your pages and posts that are indexed in other major search engines. Adding appropriate and relevant meta title and description allows search engines to determine how relevant your content will be to users based on their search engine queries. Bing & Yahoo considers even keyword meta tag to determine relevancy and rankings.
Microdata specification on your web pages is a way to improve CTR (click through rate) of your listing in search results.
3. Social Media Icons Instead of “Follow”, “Share” & “Like” Boxes
Social media profile icons may help get you more followers. Agreed!
However, the main problem with this approach is that profile icons force the user to leave your site. What happens once they get to your Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. – page? Instantly, they see one of your social contact’s latest posts, or something else that completely distracts them – and end up never returning to your site. Worse, the distraction has left your content with no social love at all! And interestingly, this is such an innocent and common social media mistake that go unnoticed.
Choose instead to include “Follow”, “Share” and “Like” boxes. This way they can add you and spread your content to their followers, while staying on your page to find even more about you to explore, decide and share!
Note: If your niche doesn’t really have much for your visitors on social media platforms you have, let open the social platforms in a new window when they click the icons. This is a slight probability to have you site still in front of them.
4. Too Much Text & No Context
Having content is a great thing but overdo is a kill.
Each and every bit of content you post needs to be meaningful in order to be relevant and make sense to your visitors. They’ve arrived at your site for specific information, or to research/purchase a product or service they need, and most of them may be in a rush and in no mood to read a lot.
This is an all-too-common mistake made by site owners and administrators. The search results or various advertising methods used attracts the visitor to your site under certain pretenses, then they immediately “bounce” after realizing you’ve stuffed a bunch of words on the page with no regard to their needs, expectations or comprehension level.
Build your content around what the reader’s need and want. Exceed their expectations!
5. Ignoring the Value of A Blog
For certain businesses, blog can prove to be the foundation & marketing channel of an entire online presence. It is surely demanding, needs time, effort on ideas and execution, publishing and marketing but… each effort is worth.
Unless you’re a celebrity or someone with resources or skills that other people desperately want, nobody is going to listen to you if you don’t continuously build credibility through awesome blog posts. They’re not going to buy from you, follow you, or share any of your comments, tweets, pins, etc.
Once you recognize the value of having a blog for your industry, it all starts with the blog and that’s where the biggest percentage of your focus should be.
6. Thinking SEO Begins After the Website Creation
I generally keep the best stuff at the end. Here is one.
Waiting until after your site is designed before planning an SEO site structure is like pushing a raft into a set of Class 5+ rapids, before checking to make sure you have your life-jacket! It’s near impossible to go back to shore once the power of those waves has already sucked you in, right? Having no SEO plans is one of the most common SEO mistakes to avoid for a business.
Effective SEO needs to be planned ahead of time: easy-to follow navigation and information architecture, loading speed, plugins, sitemap, content plan (including keyword research) and keyword optimization in your content, meta tags, and microdata all need to be addressed before get the first bit of content is indexed by the search engines and shared on social media platforms.
The 6 blunders you’ve just read about are really easy to avoid with a little forethought and plenty of patience. With so many new Internet users coming online daily and total social media users predicted to nearly double by 2017, the last thing you want to do is back-track after realizing that your traffic numbers aren’t increasing and nobody’s talking about you on social networks!
If you’re not happy with the results your website or blog should give, check that for these 6 concerns. Share what you found out. If you still feel clueless, share your doubts with me and I’d be glad to be of help.