Website optimization: What you need to know
With this in mind, knowing that their hope isto consistently stand out from the all the rest, companies understand the importance of their website in terms of visibility, with the aim of attracting and converting customers. Thus, a trend is taking shape in the marketplace, and it revolves around drawing in customers rather than going after them; this trend is called website optimization.
But why? The environment of online companies, as far as I understand it, is a highly competitive one when it comes to visibility within search engines and social networks. Being the most visible of them all surely provides tangible competitive advantages over one’s rivals, thus allowing for an increase in market share. Companies employ several techniques in order to increase visibility, such as ‘content marketing,’ ‘search engine optimization,’ ‘conversion rate optimization,’ etc…This is why website optimization is so important, and all of these same techniques are linked to website optimization.
This consists of concentrating one’s focus on rendering one’s website the most efficient it can possibly be in terms of performance and visibility, so as to generate traffic and increase conversion. Website optimization allows you to stay one step ahead of the other players in this marketplace, and it can be done in both a qualitative and original manner, with an overall goal of creating competitive advantages and adapting to future market trends, such as content optimization, interlinking, expansion onto mobile devices and other platforms, or even simply continuously aiming to encourage visitor loyalty so as to increase conversion rates.
Future development of online businesses, aka ecommerce, will in part be based on this notion of ‘website optimization.’ Who will have the best website? The most visible? The most engaging? This article will provide you with and explain the necessary steps and a few methods to use if you wish to focus your attention on the optimization of your website.
First of all, let’s examine future trends in the SEO market and in digital marketing in a bit more depth.
Mobile internet usage has never been more significant than it is now, and it is ever-increasing. The newest technological trend is to stay continuously connected, even on the go. The boom in sales of smart phones, tablets, etc, is clear proof of this. And this trend seems to steadily grow, now affecting other devices, such as watches, bracelets, etc.
This trend will drive websites to concentrate on optimization to an even greater degree in order to accommodate these kinds of formats. This endeavor will become an essential one, given that more and more people are using their phone or tablet to surf the web. This is why your website must be optimized in order to continue to function efficiently on these kinds of devices.
According to the French-language website journal du net, the number of devices connected to the internet today is estimated at 9 to 12 billion, and for the year 2020, this number is estimated to climb to 30 or even 50 billion. That is why the practice of website optimization shall become more and more important. Websites will have to respond to this trend through ‘responsive web design.’
Responsive Web Design, or RWD for short, is characterized by the various techniques and technologies used on a given website so that it may have the highest degree of adaptability to the different devices and terminals through which it is viewed. RWD allows your website to maintain its performance levels on any given device, attract users, and improve the user’s experience and increase your chances for conversion.
Content optimization shall become a rather standard practice, carried out so that content may be more qualitative, and therefore also more appealing to the user. In fact, we had covered this same topic in a previous article. Companies shall produce articles that are more and more engaging, with more interactivity and graphics. This trend derives from many vital characteristics, such as quality and quantity, interlinking, and visuals.
Quality in Quantity
Quality will soon be synonymous with quantity, contrary to what the previous trend revealed (more quality than quantity). Google heavily influences this process through the updates made to its algorithm (panda, penguins, hummingbird). More and more often, the evaluation of websites is being done with regard to qualitative content criteria.
As far as quantity is concerned, articles will have to be more original in order to stand out from all the rest, all whilst improving the user’s experience. Visitors will discover the reason why they arrived at that webpage in the first place: information that is delivered efficiently, completely, and in a visually appealing manner. That is why articles are starting to be considerably longer, yet without sacrificing the quality of the content within.
Interlinking is defined by an ‘internal link’ which navigates the visitor, who clicks on a link present in the content of a certain webpage in order to be guided to another webpage of the same website. Interlinking plays a role in website optimization in regard to two aspects: the content and the ranking, or SEO.
It allows you to optimize your web content by supplementing the user’s search by suggesting additional content that is relevant to his or her search. This further improves the user’s experience and shows that your website is a genuine source of content.
With regard to ranking, interlinking allows you to improve the quality of your links, which provide additional, relevant and quality content. This also allows for a better evaluation of your website by search engines, therefore leading to better ranking. Similarly, interlinking helps increase the time visitors spend on your website, thus reducing the bounce rate and increasing your chances for conversion.
The Visual Aspect
Website optimization also deals with the visual aspect of your website, with the aim of rendering it more appealing and engaging for the user. Content now includes more and more images so as to illustrate the author’s ideas in an original way, be it subtle or indirect. The advantage to this is that your content appears more attractive and less difficult for the user to begin reading. It helps the reader understand the text and improves his/her view of your website. That is why, in this case, your reader would be more inclined to remain on your website, rather than leave it within the first five seconds.
Visuals also concern infographics and videos; simple, short, and engaging, they are a good tool for illustrating numerous subjects (summing up a particular idea or system, or demonstrating a given idea…). They are more and more common online, because internet users tend to like them, and they transmit information quickly and in an original fashion to the user, who learns from these visuals.
Improving the Digital Experience through Appeal
Another key trend in website optimization shall be to rebuild your website in order to create an engaging and innovative user experience.
It will serve the purpose of inciting more interaction with users, thus bettering their experience. Your brand image will improve, thus relaying the message that you care about and wish to interact with potential prospects. This will give your company a ‘human aspect,’ namely that of being a company which is in tune with and connected to others.
Additionally, making your website more engaging will improve your rankings in search engines, which is wholly beneficial, given that improving that appeal of one’s website reduces the bounce rate, increases time spent on your website, as well as page views, and maximizes your chances for conversion.
The second part of this article will provide you with a list of various tools that are available to you online and that can help you optimize your website and your content in numerous ways.