Category Archives: Resolutions

Six things you can check right now to improve your site

Whether it’s a defined goal, aspirational resolution or just a subconscious want, “Make the website better” is a common theme this time of year. The first quarter is kicking in, so it’s time to get started. images

But before you do—and this is important—step back and adopt a neutral perspective. Don’t automatically hate your website, but don’t fall in love with it either. Instead, if you look at it through the eyes of an uninterested-but-reasonable shopper, you might see things you can improve.

  • Quick! What’s your site about?  Within a few seconds, your visitors should know what your site is about and have a good idea how to navigate it. Returning visitors should have a feeling of confidence and familiarity. Make sure your visitors know what’s in it for them: a great deal, a new product or a quick path to the information they want. This should happen fast with no ambiguity.
  • Appearance is important. Do your pages look strong and up-to-date?  Does your site appear up to the standards of a professional business, or does it look like it was coded by your nephew in 2007? Is it welcoming and intuitive? Is it ready for a modern and sophisticated user whose expectations of online experiences grow by the day? Would you buy from a website that looks like yours?
  • Are your keywords really hitting?  Sure, the keywords that worked a few years ago might still be working. Or maybe not. Knowing exactly what your target audiences are looking for, what terms they use, and how search optimization evolves can make a big difference in traffic and search rankings. If you haven’t done a keyword analysis in a while, it’s time.
  • Be honest: Are your pages fast enough?  If web pages don’t load in a split second and users have to wait to see them, the propensity to click off is higher than ever. Users aren’t patient. Slow-loading pages not only keep customers away, but search engines don’t like them much either.
  • Do your visitors get lost?  Here’s why good website navigation is so important: Aside from the human experience, usability influences your search engine rankings. Make sure your site’s navigation is intrinsically easy enough to let visitors know where they are, where they came from, what their options are and how to complete the sale or desired action. The easier it is to navigate your website, the higher your conversion rate. Simple as that.
  • Do you offer compelling content and a clear call to action?  Stale and boring content isn’t flattering. And it’s not effective. Make sure your pages are interesting, current, informative and error-free. Answer the visitor’s inherent question, “What’s in it for me?” as clearly as possible. Do some periodic refreshes. Update some photos. And most of all, make sure each page features a clear call to action.

Not sure where to start?

Hey, we get it—it can be a little overwhelming. That’s why we’re here to help. Drop us a line and we’ll walk through these things together. Soon, that tuned-up site will be hummin’ right along for 2016.

Skip the resolutions. Instead, send a message to your future self.

the futureWhile the rest of the world makes resolutions that probably won’t last more than a few weeks, I invite you to try something different this year.

Instead of vague promises, you’re going to communicate with your future self. For real. I’m not kidding.

How? With this: https://www.futureme.org/

Yep, you’re going to send an email into the future, and I urge you to try it.

It’ll be delivered in a few days, weeks, months, even years—it’s up to you. As a good starting point, try three months. (It’s totally free and you can write as many as you want. Note that your email address will be verified so that your future email will actually arrive. Don’t worry… no registration is required and it’s not an email address collection site. It’s legit.)

Maybe ask your future self if you’ve reached an important milestone and what it looks like from the other side. Or remind your future self about the skills you want to develop this year. Or ask about the trip you want to take. Or how a great idea seems exciting and bursting with energy. Or how you’re progressing on building your business. Maybe make a bold prediction and see if it comes true. Or just scribble a few thoughts about whatever’s on your mind at this exact moment.

This simple-but-powerful tool is both useful and fascinating, and certainly more fun than making typical resolutions. It’s a profound idea: What would you tell your future self?

Just like the new year, there are so many possibilities.