What’s one new thing you’ve done to optimize your website(s) this year that’s made a huge impact on your business thus far?
The following answers are provided by the Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, the YEC recently launched #StartupLab, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses via live video chats, an expert content library and email lessons.
1. Simplify Design and Messaging
We live in a fast world where people get what they want now. If your website is cluttered or you don’t explain your value proposition, you’ll lose conversions simply because people don’t want to take the time or risk figuring out what you are. In fact, it seems like people don’t read anything longer than a tweet! By focusing our messaging and reducing clutter, we get much better conversions.
2. Install Google Business Photos
Embedding Google Business Photos into our website has reduced our transnational cost and increased conversions. The software uses Google’s Street View software to create a virtual tour of any brick-and-mortar location, so customers can book with confidence.
3. Add Engaging Videos
Adding short but fun animated videos created using PowToon has enabled us to provide a quick overview of what we do at Startup Training School and with other projects in a more engaging way than just text-based content. This has increased engagement levels off-site and encouraged visitors to stay on the site for longer and read more about our offer.
4. Install WordPress SEO by Yoast
This is a WordPress plugin that allows you to see how each of your blog posts and pages is optimized with a simple red or green light mechanism. It’s so easy that anyone on the team can run through it and make sure that all of your content is properly set up for search engines.
5. Become A/B Positive
We implemented Optimizely and A/B tested everything. At any given moment, we are running several A/B tests and taking a very Darwinian approach to improving our user experience. You’ll be amazed when you’re 100 percent certain one version of a screen will convert the best, only to find that you are wrong. It’s a tough pill to swallow, but data doesn’t lie.
Using this tool has transformed our internal conversations. Our internal debates have changed from, “what looks better on this page” to “let’s test both options.” Optimizely’s testing is robust, detailed and transformative. It’s changed the way we do business, increased our lead generation funnel and allowed us to be more transparent to clients.
7. Make It Mobile Friendly
We spent a lot of time redesigning our website to be responsive and doing a lot of testing on mobile platforms and tablets. With an increasing amount of traffic coming from mobile, we know how important it is to make the mobile experience flawless so that we keep people engaged no matter which device they visit us on.
8. Better and Bigger Pictures
We are a product company, so this may be unique to other product companies, but it amazes me how poor some photography and videos are for certain industries. We had an immediate conversion increase after taking new higher-quality photos for our homepage and increasing their size.
9. Update Your Blog
The addition of a regularly updated blog has driven more visitors to my business website. This is likely for two reasons: people like to feel a personal connection to the “person behind the business,” and I keep it interesting. I talk about things that are going on at that very moment and how they impact business. I use anecdotes about my business and others to make it relatable.
10. Increase Your Website’s Speed
As an infographic company, we have a very visual website. This makes it very pretty, but also super slow. We’ve been working on optimizing the site for speed so visitors can not only see more content, but also get to what they’re looking for much faster. We’ve already seen an increase in page views and requests for work.