Lee Kenny: How to optimise your website

Lee Kenny, managing director of Snowflake Media
Lee Kenny, managing director of Snowflake Media

Here at the Snowflake Media Group one of our most rewarding parts of the job is helping clients get their websites and offerings found.

The “Build it and they will come” model for websites broke a long time ago and the reality is that no matter how brilliant your product or service, if not one can find it, you are going to struggle to get new business.

My company, Digital Jumpsuit was created to help website owners use all the available elements of online marketing to get the number of visitors, and ultimately sales and leads, up as quickly as possible. The element that takes longest in marketing is know as Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), however it tends to provide the longest lasting benefits.

Whether you decide to do this yourself or hire an agency to help, here’s some key steps to consider:

Technical Audit

Google is responsible for 70 per cent of most websites traffic and they have a well-documented set of technical standards they expect from website owners. There are many elements, but the key ones are as follows.

Page Speed: How fast your website loads. Google scores you from 1-100, Ideally you want to be 80+ on both mobile and desktop. 95 per cent of companies we audit have a score of 30 or less and usually mobile speed is far worse than the desktop.

Behind the Scenes: Without using too much jargon, websites have a lot of inbuilt features that label (for the benefit of search engines) things around the website. These include Images, which text is more important than others and when you have similar content on various pages, which one should take priority. Often Google gets confused because it doesn’t know what an image is, especially when it has been labelled “img.2016” directly from your camera. If it isn’t obvious in the set-up of the site, Google can’t direct people to you.

Two other key factors are mobile optimisation, most sites should display very differently on mobile than they do on desktop due to size limitations of screens. Secondly, the hottest topic this year is SSL certificates. This is a security feature that means your site will now display as a https rather than http and keeps your website visitors safe.

Try Paid Ads

I mentioned SEO can take time and it’s difficult to know where to start. One easy and quick way to do this is to run some paid advertising on Google or Facebook (If that’s where your market is). Google can be the most expensive but is “intent driven”, meaning the user typed in a very specific phrase. With Facebook it is “interruptive” which means the user probably didn’t go to Facebook looking for your product or service.

Testing these adverts allows you to see whether your site is effective at capturing sales or leads when you have people visiting the site. If you do, Bingo! Now you can start optimising your site and page to encourage Google to display you above others

I could probably fill the whole newspaper with all the different things you could do. Maybe one for another column

Lee Kenny @SocialSnowflake

MORE COLUMNS

Lee Kenny: How to market your business on a budget
Councillor Colin Raistrick: This is not the way to spend hard working taxpayers money
Lee Kenny: This could be blocking your business growth