Need to enhance your website but have limited time to do it?
You’re in the right place.
This list of simple tweaks you can make to your website will help you ensure your site is usable and effective. PLUS each of them can be done in less than a day. Let’s dive in.
Rewrite your homepage headline
The general rule of thumb is that it takes 0.05 seconds for someone to form an opinion about your website. This means for your site to be impactful, your content needs to get right to the point. A first-time visitor should be able to figure out what your brand does from just a quick glance.
To help illustrate this concept, StoryBrand uses the grunt test: if a caveman looks at your site, they should be able to grunt what it is you offer. Your homepage headline should be short and punchy so it’s effortless for visitors to understand. Cut the complicated words and keep it straightforward so even a caveman could say it.
Test your forms
A contact form that functions properly is a foundational element on your website. If your leads run into an error with a form, there’s a good chance they might exit your site without telling you. That leaves an impact on your bottom line. Testing your forms on a regular basis is a simple way to make sure you’re not missing out on opportunities to connect with potential customers.
Add relevant calls to action
Scroll through your main landing pages, including your homepage. Take inventory of the calls to action (CTAs) you use on the pages and how often they’re used. Are there any pages without a CTA? Any sections that would benefit from having a CTA added? Don’t be afraid to add multiple thoughtfully placed CTAs on certain pages to give your audience more than one chance to convert as they navigate your site.
Include meta descriptions
Meta descriptions are the snippets of text that appear under the headlines in search engine results. They provide a brief summary of what the page contains. Your website pages need meta descriptions to (1) inform people about the page and (2) help increase click-through rates. Spend a few minutes reviewing the pages on your site to make sure each one has an accurate, unique, and concise meta description.
Use alt text & captions
Alt text assigns a visual description to an image or graphic, which allows screen readers to interpret them. Without alt text, people who use a screen reader can’t understand the images on your website.
Review all images, graphics, and GIFs on your site to ensure helpful alt text is assigned. Along the same lines, make sure any videos on your site have captioning available so they’re accessible as well.
Get content out of files and into your CMS
Check your content to see if it uses text-heavy documents or images. Any text content that’s flattened within a PDF, JPG, PNG, or other file on your site isn’t doing you any favors. Search engines can’t crawl or index the content within those files. And they’re not accessible via the web for people who use screen readers (unless, for example, you add alt text to an image).
Instead of uploading text-heavy documents to your pages, it’s better practice to add the content directly to your site. Take the content from the PDF or other file type and build it out within a page in your CMS.
Need an easy way to test whether your site’s content is flattened? Usually if you can’t highlight the text with your cursor, it’s flattened and you may want to rebuild it within your CMS for better crawlability and accessibility.
Add an SSL certificate
All websites need to add an SSL certificate for digital security. Even if your site isn’t processing sensitive data like payments or other personal info, having an SSL certificate boosts the trustworthiness of your site in the eyes of your visitors.
Some hosting providers offer free SSL certificates which make it easy to increase the security and credibility of your website without hassle. A site that has an active SSL certificate will have a locked padlock next to the domain and the URL will begin with https (instead of http).
Incorporate a value proposition
Writing a value proposition is the simplest way to communicate what your business does and who you serve. It’s a smart idea to place your value proposition in a highly visible location on your website, like the hero section of your homepage. An effective proposition clarifies who the business is, what they’re offering, to whom they’re offering it, and what those people can expect to receive as a benefit.
Improving your website doesn’t always have to be time-consuming. When you make the right gradual changes over time, it can have a significant impact on the success your brand has online.
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