The Importance of Website Health Checks
With the Coronavirus continuing to shut down most of the world, now is the perfect time to start focusing on your brand if you haven’t already done so. With so much uncertainty in the world right now, one thing we can be certain of is that your brand reputation is just as, if not more, important than it was prior to your outbreak. Ultimately, it will help guide you through the Pandemic and enable your brand to thrive as we begin to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
As experts in the digital marketing industry, we can point you in the right direction by providing insights into how you can use your brand, assets, website and reputation to your advantage over the coming weeks. To speak to a member of the team directly call 0800 088 6000, today.
Table Of Contents
• Refresh Your Content
• Cleanse Your Backlink Profile
• Site Speed
• Technical Health
• Focus On Your Brand
• Managing Your Reputation
• Get Your Free Marketing Advice
Refresh Your Content
With less distractions around you and your team, now could be the perfect time to sit back and refresh your content. This is especially true for businesses that may be facing downtime as the pandemic continues to roll out to new countries.
Whilst Google rolled out its E-A-T guidelines a couple of years ago, it’s still important that we create content that Google wants. Afterall, Google no longer focuses on delivering the most relevant information to users; they also want to deliver the correct information to a search query!
Some search queries may negatively impact a user’s happiness, health of wealth. So, when it comes to these particular issues, it’s important that websites display a high level of E-A-T or expertise, authoritativeness and trustworthiness to help protect users from false or misleading information.
This is where Google’s E-A-T Quality Rater Guidelines come in. This set of guidelines “are what human quality raters use to evaluate websites and SERPs”. It’s important to recognise that these guidelines don’t directly impact rankings but are instead used to improve Google’s search algorithm.
The guidelines are 166 pages long, covering a wide range of topics inline with E-A-T and how businesses can make sure their website complies. The guidelines are so vast, that we created our own shortened version of the guide!
Cleanse Your Backlink Profile
As many people turn their attention to cleaning out their kitchen cupboards and wardrobes, you could do the same but with your backlink profile. Cleansing your backlink profile is something that many businesses fail to do and only understand the importance of after being hit with a Google penalty.
By using your time wisely a conducting a huge cleanse of your backlink profile, not only do you reduce the chance of being hit with a Google penalty, but it also:
• Improves organic ranking
• Speeds up indexing
• Boosts referral traffic
A website that has a good loading speed makes a good first impression, boosting overall user satisfaction by up to 16%. It will also help to build the confidence required for a user to share their personal and other private information such as billing details with you, helping to close the deal. According to research, site speed also plays an important part in site loyalty with Kissmetrics reporting that 52% of online shoppers considering page loading speed importance.
Site speed can also benefit your social media efforts, too. For example, pages that load at a fast rate will often appear higher in our newsfeeds, resulting in greater reach and engagement when compared to websites that took longer to load.
To improve your site speed, consider:
• Reducing the number of page redirects on your website
• Leveraging browser caching
• Improving service response time by sourcing performance bottlenecks
• Using a content distribution network to equalise the load of content being delivered
• Optimising your images to ensure that they are no bigger than they actually need to be.
In this day and age, you need to make sure that your website is responsive to the device it is being accessed on, whether that’s a mobile, tablet, laptop or computer screen. Google is a particular fan of mobile device responsiveness, now mandatorily introducing mobile-first indexing later this year.
Ensuring your sites health is a bit more technical than just ensuring that it is responsive to the device it is being view on. Afterall, your site needs crawlability! Crawlability refers to the amount of time Google bots want to spend on your site, enabling it to move up in the search engine rankings. Essentially, you want to make sure that your website is:
• Fast: There are a number of ways to increase your page speed, including by enabling compression where possible, reducing the number of redirects on your site and using a CDN otherwise known as a “content distribution network” to improve the speed of which your content is delivered to users.
• Crawlable: To make your website more crawlable, don’t duplicate any content across your site. Instead, focus on publishing unique content on a regular basis!
• Doesn’t feature too many “dead” links: Instead of having broken links on your website which lead visitors to pages that never did or no longer exist, use a plugin to reduce the number of broken links or 404 errors on your website.
• Duplicate content free: As mentioned, you need to make sure that you are consist on your website. Ensure it is duplicate content free, and insert the rel=”canonical” link element where possible to prevent future duplicate content issues arising.
• Secure: To make sure your website is as secure as possible, be sure to select a capable host and keep all of your security subscriptions up to date. In some cases, it may be beneficial to install a secure sockets layer certificate to not only project data, but better your search engine ranking, too.
Focus On Your Brand
With so much going on, it can be easy to overlook the importance of your brand, assets and website. But in a time of crisis, you shouldn’t underestimate how the smallest tweak or change could make a difference to your business’s success. In some cases, it may be worth going back to the basics to revisit how you want your business to be perceived.
Now is the perfect time to pivot your brand and potentially make all of those changes you noted that you would do when you had the time to do so. Of course, now is a difficult time for everyone so by focusing on your brand, you should also be thinking about how you can realign your strategy to help your customers.
Helping your customers in a time of crisis is key, and we’ve put together a list of 10 helpful tips to help:
• Be sure to update your customers at any given opportunity – being honest is key!
• Adding reviews to your website is a good way to boost your organic search traffic amongst other metrics.
• Making any secure payment options known is vital, especially when so much is still uncertain.
• Now is the perfect time to promote your businesses USPs, drawing attention to why customers should come to you and not a competitor.
• Updating your About Us page is a small, but necessary touch when building trust.
Read our complete guide.
Managing Your Reputation
Managing your reputation at the time of a crisis can feel like your juggling numerous things at once, but it’s all about maintaining control and listening to your customers needs. Through doing so, you can respond to potential complaints as required and start up your digitised crisis communication plan should you need to.
With so much negative news circling the online world, you could also consider sharing positive news to lighten the current situation. More than likely, this will help to draw more people to your brand as more of us begin to withdraw ourselves from this type of media.
You can protect your reputation by:
• Keeping track of everything that is being said, good and bad
• Understanding what should be shared publicly, and what should remain private
• Have a “crisis communication” plan at the ready in case you need to take control of the situation
• Encourage your existing and new customers to leave reviews or feedback, and respond to any that may be negative to identify how the issue can be resolved.
Get Your Free Marketing Advice
We want to help as many business as possible over the next few months, which is why we’re offering free advice to businesses that have been impacted by Coronavirus for a limited time. Whilst we would love to help everyone who approaches us, our clients remain a priority, and so we are limiting the number people we can speak to on a daily basis. All we need is your name, telephone number and website URL to get started. Apply here.
For more information, get in touch with a member of our expert team on 0800 088 6000 today.