3 Reasons Why You Need
A Comprehensive Website Optimization Plan
In highly competitive industries where most conversions happen on a brand’s website, not having an optimization plan can cost a company potentially millions in lost revenue.
Your website is often one of the first interactions between your brand and your audience. Before a customer makes a purchase, they will almost always visit a company website on their path to their final buying decision. According to reports, 75 percent of brand credibility is based on a company’s website. Unlike other channels, you have complete control over the experience.
As web optimization has become a top priority for most organizations, many misconceptions about the web optimization process have arisen as well. Many marketing departments believe SEO is the ‘end all be all’ to increasing online revenue. However, when visitors get to the site, if it is not optimized to align with your company’s objectives, all of that traffic can end up actually costing more because the site isn’t prepared to do its job. As changes in consumer behavior, objectives and technology evolve, it is extremely critical that companies understand why they should have a consistent website optimization plan.
What is Web Optimization?
Website optimization is the process of improving upon an existing website site to perform better. Rather than completely overhauling the site, this process will allow you to identify and eliminate gaps and take advantage of opportunities to drive additional sales conversions, newsletter sign-up, memberships, bookings, and more. Websites are no longer static properties that are constructed once to never be looked at again. They are dynamic assets that need constant attention to perform optimally. The ever changing digital landscape combined with shifting consumer habits require companies to optimize their website regularly in order to remain competitive in their industry.
What’s Wrong With SEO?
Absolutely nothing. SEO is a critical part of your marketing arsenal and a key driver of traffic into the site. And it is one element of website optimization. However, it is only a small portion of the overall website optimization process. An intact search engine optimization strategy will help your brand become discoverable on the internet. But if your website is not fully optimized, you won’t be able to capitalize upon the traffic you receive from search engines, ad campaigns and more.
In fact, strong SEO combined with poor website optimization can potentially push customers away from your site. According to Oracle, 89% of consumers shop with a competitor after a poor site user experience. Search engine optimization is essential, but you will only reap its benefits after your website has been improved with the needs and preferences of your target demographic in mind.
Is My Website Good Enough?
This is a common question from brands, however, few have structured processes in place to provide a proper answer.
The answer is fairly simple – is your company hitting its revenue, subscription, booking and other goals? Is the velocity at which the company is growing satisfactory?
If you believe there is room for improvement, then your website can benefit from optimization. Whether your goal is to increase revenue or to collect newsletter signups, there are steps that can be taken to get you closer to your organization’s marketing and revenue goals.
Our position(and granted it might be a bit self-serving) is that there is always room to improve.
Structural Obstacles To Website Optimization
Many businesses invest in their websites with the purpose of increasing sales. However, in our experience, there are a few roadblocks that can get in the way of improvements:
- Lack of Resources. Traditionally, small and medium sized businesses budget website development as a one-time expense. There is rarely capital set aside to perform continued maintenance and optimizations on the site. Consumer behavior is changing and users desire a positive user experience every time they visit. Despite the cost that comes with website optimization, those that are not optimized are literally leaking money everyday.
- Limited Buy In From Executives. The C-Suite doesn’t always understand how important your brand’s website is in the overall customer buying journey. For example, CFO’s may consider website optimization to be an avoidable capital expense – failing to realize the positive impacts it can have on the company’s bottom line. Educating executives on the importance of optimization will make it a higher priority.
- Technical Knowledge. Many associates simply don’t have the proper knowledge to understand how a website optimization plan should be structured nor how to execute. Before any changes can be made, a comprehensive audit must be performed in order to identify problem areas and potential opportunities.
Why Should I Have A Website Optimization Plan?
Having a structured plan based on our organization’s goals, your consumer behavior and your opportunities can help keep increasing your site conversions. There are many places to start and there are about a zillion different elements to test. Without a web optimization plan, it can get overwhelming, you can miss your goals, and most importantly you may not have a clear understanding of what worked and what didn’t.
Mobile Web Optimization is Critical
The proliferation of smart devices has made web browsing increasingly simple for consumers. Statista reports that over 54% of global website traffic came from mobile devices in 2021 – up from 31 percent just 6 years earlier. For most of Angelsmith’s clients, the percent of users who originate from mobile exceeds 70 percent. If your website is not optimized for mobile, you are effectively ignoring a significant portion of your web traffic.
In 2021 and beyond, brands must adopt a mobile-first approach to ensure their website is performing as it should. Some fixes are simple, such as scaling images, using short metadata, and avoiding pop-ups that prevent visitors from experiencing your website in its entirety. However, optimizing for mobile can get much more technical – especially if your brand is considering a website optimization plan for the first time.
Your Conversion Rate Can Improve Significantly
Every business has a different definition of conversion. Your conversion rate will depend on the desired action you want users to perform. This could be a successful ecommerce transaction, filling out a contact form, or even clicking a specific link. If your conversion rate is not where you want it to be, it may be time to start on your website optimization plan.
There are a few ways to improve your conversion rate. One method is guaranteed to deliver results though:
- Improve the user experience for your target audience.
Consider their pain points and how your offer addresses these. Also consider their selling points and what makes them excited about your product or service. Creating buyer personas to better understand your audience can also help inform your web optimization plan.
Small Changes Can Drastically Enhance Site Performance
Many professionals believe that website optimization is time and capital intensive. While it can be, very small changes can also have a significant impact on your site’s performance. When combined with a larger optimization plan, you’ll start to see an increased ROI from your website.
A complete overhaul of your website is not necessary in most instances. (Unless, it’s REALLY ugly, but we’ll let you be the judge of that!) In fact, making too many changes may even crash your revenue. As a matter of fact that happened to one of our clients. They did a redesign with another agency and their sales plummeted. They called in Angelsmith to help them retool their cart check out process and get them back on track.
Prioritizing results and then implementing small fixes over time will allow you to learn what works and make incremental changes that have a meaningful impact on your objectives and sales goals.
What Should I Optimize?
For many firms, this is the million dollar question. However, it is not one that can be answered after reading a single blog post. Website optimization is highly technical and must be meticulously planned in order to produce the desired outcome for your business. First, an audit must be performed to help inform your strategy.
Typically, with the audit we will identify your lowest hanging fruit, and create a step by step plan.
In our more than 20 years of experience, these are the elements that typically give a brand some of the best ROI:
- Color shifts
- Reordering elements on a page
- Eliminating unnecessary form fields
- Adding a sense of urgency
- Increasing security signals
- Copywriting updates
- Check out flow
- Demonstrating social proof
- Increasing visual hierarchy to align with goals
Most companies do not have internal talent that is capable of handling such an undertaking – and that’s okay. The website experts over at Angelsmith have you covered. With over 20 years of experience delivering quality websites and web programs for companies spanning several industries, our team places an emphasis on delivering tangible results that have a lasting impact on your brand.
Interested in learning more? Schedule a free consultation with a website optimization expert from Angelsmith today!