How to Find if Your Website Sucks? How to Make it Sell? Actionable Tips
If online sales and website traffic matters to you, then, following questions will surely interest you;
- Why only a small percentage of total website visitors buy something, while most leave without a purchase?
- How many pages does a visitor browse before leaving? If just one or two, then why is that happening?
- Why number of website visitors has fallen drastically?
- Why Exit Rate is high on sign up page?
- Why people are not clicking on the sign up or buy now button?
- Why people are not subscribing to my blog or discount/promotion offers?
- How to make my website sell?
- How my website can make millions for me as my neighbor did?
- How to find if my website sucks?
Google algorithm is smarter than ever. It can tell you how many additional calories your sausage has over hot dog. You don’t need to open a link to know Barack Obama’s birthday.
In such a scenario, if you think that black hat link building tricks can maintain your SERPs, then, you are destined to disaster. If your website sucks, Google will surely bring down your search engine rankings sooner or later.
Now, the first question is how to confirm whether you website sucks or not. The answer is right here;
How to find out if your website sucks?
A website is great in Google’s opinion if people like, revisit, recommend and share it. Now, you must be wondering how Google tells a good website from a bad one.
Factors like bounce rate, revisits, likes/shares, amount of direct traffic, and visit duration comes together to create good and bad signals for Google. Based on these signals, Google algorithm determines the suitability of the website for search phrases, target audience and then ranks it on the quality scale.
Here are some tools and the variables that will help you in discovering the real value of your website;
This Google service generates statistics that can be used to analyze the performance of a website, can tell you if your website sucks. By using the service, you can keep a check on following elements:
- Traffic, conversions and sources
- Direct traffic & Revisits
- Bounce Rate – If it’s more than 50%, your website surely needs better UX plan.
- Exit Rate – If it’s higher than acceptable rate, you need to find out why.
- Average visit duration and count of pages browsed by each visitor before exit
- Organic, paid and social media traffic
Another free service from Google, it helps website owners in tracking site’s health. It will help you keep a check on following aspects:
- Manual Action – If Google has taken any manual action against your website for violating Google content and SEO guidelines, you will be notified about it.
- Links to your website and the anchor text used to link to your website – Google Penguin update is punishing websites carrying backlinks from irrelevant sources and doing unnatural/artificial link building.
- Crawl Errors – Keep a check on 404 errors, DNS errors, Server Connectivity, robots.txt etc
- Crawl Stats – It informs about the count of pages being crawled by Google every day.
- Security Issues – Learn about security related issues on your website. Get warned if website is affected by some Trojan or redirecting the visitors to some malicious website.
- Page Speed Stats – Use Page Speed insights to make your web pages load faster on all devices. For more information, visit http://developers.google.com/speed/pagespeed/insights
Your website definitely sucks if;
Above tools will help you come across website glitches and improvement areas. However, you need to make statistic observations to reach solid conclusions. For people who are not yet familiar with above mentioned tools, we have made things easy.
In case you can associate following points with your website, it definitely sucks;
Takes Too Long to Load
Check your website loading speed at http://tools.pingdom.com
This full page test tool helps in analyzing loading speed of websites. The easy-to-use tool lets users identify what is fast, slow or too big in a web page.
Use Google Page Speed to see how your website conforms to best performance practices. It is very similar to Yahoo’s Yslow. You can also pick some great tips on speeding up your website.
Pro Tip -
Test from multiple locations to see how fast your website loads in different countries. Signup for free to receive alerts when your website is down and for regular performance tracking.
Not Optimized for Mobile Devices
You are losing traffic if your website gets distorted. You need a mobile optimized website for all the features to work properly on mobile devices. Not having one leads to bad user experience, high bounce rate and loss in business opportunities.
Pro Tip -
Test your website on different devices and browsers with the help of these 19 tools. Choose the one that suits you best.
Not Tested for Multiple Browsers
Your website should work effortlessly and give similar experience on maximum web browsers and their most versions. It should also be updated regularly for newer web browser versions.
Pro Tip -
Use Google Analytics to check bounce rate of your website for various mobile devices and browsers.
Using Unethical SEO Techniques
Thousands of websites lost ranking and business after Google’s Panda and Penguin updates. If you think that it is possible to trick Google’s ranking Algorithm and generating business for a long time, you are bound to fall flat on your face. Keep Google Webmaster and SEO guidelines in mind and work accordingly.
Pro Tip -
Concentrate more on user experience so that link building happens naturally. If you are new with SEO, then, refer to the ultimate search engine optimization starter guide to get you started.
Confusing Website Navigation
If a visitor is not able to find what he came looking for, the whole purpose of your website is defeated. Navigation ought to be intuitive and crafted in such a way that just one glance would guide the visitor in the right direction.
Pro Tip -
Use Google Analytics and CrazyEgg Heatmaps to discover navigation elements and links that are not getting any attention from visitors.
Poor Information Architecture
If a visitor cannot understand your product or service within 5 seconds of landing, you seriously need to rethink the information architecture. Labeling, categorization and overall flow needs to be redone to make it more striking and communicative.
Pro Tip -
ClickTale and CrazyEgg can be used to gather data for IA related improvements.
Introductory Audio or Video that Auto-plays
Web users don’t usually like to be surprised with sounds and videos that start on their own. If you have a great explainer video, then, generate buzz around it and make sure they are located at a prominent place in the homepage.
Pro Tip -
If you don’t have the technical expertise to create a unique and creative explainer video on your own, hiring professional experts would be the first thing to do.
Refer to the list of some great explainer videos and the companies who made them.
How to Make your Website Sell and Not Suck?
If you have started a website with the goal of making money, then, it cannot afford to look and rank bad. Give attention to following website improvement points for more website sales and revenue generation;
Check Loading Time
Use Pingdom to take website speed test. It will not just tell you how long your website takes to load but also highlight the cause of the delay. You can then ask your website design team to make improvements.
Optimize for Keywords
Irrelevant traffic is one of the prime reasons for high bounce rate. Optimize your website for appropriate keywords and generate relevant business traffic. Targeting search phrases relevant to your industry will also give you an edge over competitors.
Use “http://tools.seobook.com/general/keyword-density/” to analyze the density of keywords on and also see how search engines read your website. Check the referral sources of traffic from Google Analytics.
Recommended for SEO – http://www.fatbit.com/
Check what fraction of your website’s traffic comes from mobile devices. You can get this information through Google Analytics. This will help you decide whether it is worth investing in a mobile optimized website or not.
Study Visitor Behavior
Use Heatmaps to see where visitors are clicking and what parts of the page are getting scanned & scrolled. Google Analytics can tell you a lot about visitor behavior and where you need to focus for website improvements.
Check for Penalties
If your website has suddenly lost ranking, there is a high possibility that you have been penalized for using unethical SEO techniques. Google now notifies you if your website or certain web pages have been penalized due to over-optimization.
Make sure you have Google Webmaster Tools set up on your site. Once in Webmaster Tools, click on “Search Traffic” and then “Manual Actions”.
If any action has been taken against your site, details will be listed within. Here is a sample screenshot of what a manual penalty for a webpage will look like in Google Webmaster Tool.
It is best to contact an SEO expert. A SEO professional can help you figure out the reasons for penalty, loss of organic ranking and traffic.
Focus on User Experience
If your website lacks in the field of user experience, consult a UX expert. Here is a blog post that will help you figure out where you are going wrong with user experience:
Ask your design and development team to make the required changes.
Focus on Conversion
When visitors are browsing your website but conversions are not happening, it means there is something wrong with your checkout process. Consult a conversion optimization expert if the bounce rate is high at the bottom of your conversion funnel.
You can get detailed information through Google Analytics account (Conversions>> Goals>> Funnel Visualization)
A blog post for in-depth understanding of Google Analytics conversion funnel.
FATbit has been helping online brands improve sales and entrepreneurs launch new brands for almost a decade now. We have worked on more than 2000 web projects and promised success to all our clients.
In case you are not sure what is wrong with your website, we can find the problem for you. Get in touch for friendly website consultation and we will manage the rest.
- 101 Actionable Best Tips: How To Make Your Website Sell
- Cost of Hiring a Web Designer from a Professional Agency
- Keller’s Brand Equity Pyramid Perfected by Young Online Businesses
- User Experience Design and Optimization: What-Why-How
- Website Redesign – Why Some (Pinterest) Succeed & Others Fail?
- All Web Design & Development Outsourcing Queries Answered in One Post!