As the new year approaches, most business owners write down a list of things they want to improve going into 2018. Often improving or growing the website presence is towards the top of the list.
Since WordPress powers 29% of all websites on the internet and likely your website is built using it too, I asked one of the most well-respected WordPress influencer, Syed Balkhi, to share 5 of his top tips to improving your website in 2018.
Syed is the founder of WPBeginner, the largest free WordPress resource site on the planet. Aside from that, he’s also the guy behind several popular WordPress plugins and tools like OptinMonster, WPForms, MonsterInsights, and several others which collectively powers over 4 million websites including big brands in just about every vertical.
Given his experience building and running websites that receives over hundred million pageviews every year, I figured he would be the best person to ask what are the 5 tips he would recommend business owners focus on to improve their website in 2018.
1. Understand Your Analytics
The key to improving your website is making data-driven decisions. Often business owners don’t use proper analytics software. Google Analytics is one of the best analytics solution in the market.
You can use the free plugin like MonsterInsights to properly set it up.
Once setup, you need to look at the top pages on your website by going to Behavior > Landing Pages. Look at the top 50 pages which has the worst engagement, and improve those pages.
This is the easiest way to boost conversions on your website.
2. Improve Your Website Performance
Studies show that a 1 second delay in page load time can lead to 7% loss in conversions, 11% fewer pageviews, and 16% decrease in customer satisfaction.
If that wasn’t enough, Google and other search engines penalize slower websites by pushing down in the search results which means lower traffic.
The key things that slow down your website are web hosting, lack of proper caching, large page size, and bad plugins.
I recommend that you use a tool like Pingdom to run a speed test, and see how your website performs.
Based on the results, start optimizing your website by setting up proper caching, switching web hosts, using a CDN provider, etc.
CloudFlare offers free CDN and can drastically improve your website performance.
You can follow these 19 tips to speed up your WordPress site.
3. Experiment with Video
YouTube is the second largest search engine in the world, and video is growing dramatically over the last few years. At WPBeginner, we have started to convert our popular articles into videos and this have led to our YouTube channel growing past 79,000 subscribers.
While creating video content takes time, it not only helps increase time spent on page, but it also helps with conversions and SEO.
4. Create a Dedicated Testimonials Page
Studies show that nearly 70% of online consumers look at a product review prior to making a purchase. Research done by Nielsen shows that 92% of people will trust a recommendation from a peer, and 70% of people will trust a recommendation from someone they don’t even know.
This is why almost all big brands show customer testimonials on their website.
You can take it one level further by creating a dedicated testimonials page on your website.
This allows you to add more social proof on your website while also ranking for the keyword: “Your Brand Name” reviews which is likely one of the top things your customers look up before they buy your product.
5. Use Tables to capture Position Zero in Search Results
The most coveted spot in Google search is no longer Position 1, but it’s rather the rich snippets that show up above them also referred to as Position Zero.
While no one knows exactly what criteria Google uses to feature a page on Position Zero, studies show that often those pages contain semantic data markup, lists, or tables.
TablePress is a free WordPress plugin that makes it easy for you to add tables in your blog post.
You should take a look at Moz’s research on featured snippets for more insights.
I hope these tips help you improve your business website in 2018.