The quality of your website dramatically determines the efficacy of your business’ online marketing strategies. Consequently, you will have to keep close track of and maintain the performance of your website all the time. Failure to maintain the required performance across different areas makes it difficult for you to gather vital analytical data needed to enhance future business and online marketing strategies and undermines the site’s ability to convert its visitors.
We are eager to show you the 12 most common issues that bring down a website’s performance and that you should always be aware of.
OLD OR LOW-GRADE VISUAL DESIGN
For many customers, a horrible home page is one of the most repulsive aspects of an underperforming website. For example, avoid having a poor colour selection or a funny logo on your website. Likewise, keep the website looking fresh and update as much as possible to continue getting traffic to your site.
Indeed, we understand that building and maintaining a quality website can be expensive. Still, in the digital space, a lot of change is occurring, compelling businesses to continually adopt the necessary changes. Websites that were a few years ago very slick and captivating, like a new Ferrari, now seem pretty mundane, like a third-hand Volvo.
Luckily, all you need to do to recapture your website’s quality back is to refresh it and begin again. Indeed, you will need to pay for it, but the income far outweighs the cost of remodelling the website with simple site maintenance.
External Links That Are No Longer Working
Having broken links on your site might seem like a small problem, but it must be fixed. This happens when visitors are directed to a different website page, possibly when supporting a point on your blog post. As time passes, the content on these websites’ pages may be moved or deleted, ending your site’s link to these sites’ pages.
It is impossible to determine how people choose to run their sites. However, we must change or delete the broken links from our website. Remember, a broken link can cause a sale or purchase to fall. However, you can be sure that broken links will not impress visitors and will weigh negatively on your site’s ability to rank and SEO, resulting in a decline in revenues.
For example, a broken link will stop you from referring a customer to a site where the page was brought down, especially when dealing with a source that could be more reliable and credible information. Google considers this point when determining how it will rank a page with a broken link and the level of authority it is willing to give to that domain. Pages with broken links rank low in the search results and reduce traffic to the site.
It is hard to ascertain the losses brought by this issue. For instance, how many leads and potential customers can use a business bypass because the visitors’ trust in the site has been dwindled by the broken links? It is difficult to determine. However, there is plenty more money you can earn if your site’s pages are ranking well in Google results.
You must employ practical coding skills when building your website, mainly when adding extra functions and features. There are various negative issues brought by messy and unorganized code, such as loss of the website’s functionality and the inability of the search engine to index your site’s pages correctly. These two main issues contribute to low search rankings and reduced revenues.
Examples of Coding Issues For a Website Are:
Incorrect Robot.txt Files
Google and other search engines rely on bots to comb the content on a particular website and give it an index for search ranking objectives. Robot.txt files, sometimes known as robots exclusion protocol, allow web crawlers and other online bots to identify if there are specific parts of your website that you do not want to be scanned or processed.
Web crawlers look for robot.txt files before they start crawling the website. If the robot.txt files on your site are not used well, the web crawlers will likely need help reading them correctly. Consequently, your whole website will be crawled and indexed. Below are several tips to help you use robot.txt files correctly:
-Robot.txt files have to be positioned in your website’s top-level directory for them to be located
-The name of the Robot.txt files must be in small letters, for example, “robots.txt”
-Each subdomain needs to have its robots.txt files
-Show the location of any sitemaps related to your domain below your robots.txt files
-Ensure you are not using robot.txt files to conceal private user data, as robot.txt files are available publicly
A Missing Sitemap File
The role of a sitemap file is to give web crawlers information about the pages, videos, and other files on your site. By creating a sitemap, you are offering search indexes a road map to your website to enable them to index the content you want them to. Sitemaps can also tell the search engine the kind of content on every page (like images or videos) when the pages were last updated, how frequently pages on your site change, and if you have provided alternate language versions of the site’s pages.
The lack of a sitemap makes it easy for web crawlers to miss several pages on your site. This issue occurs when content pages need to be linked to each other correctly or are isolated. The recent website can also have fewer external links, making it hard to discover some of the pages on the site. A sitemap allows bots to find the information they require about your site to index it and rank it appropriately.
Exaggerated Use Of Subfolders in URL Strings
A visitor browsing your website extensively might find themselves on a page with a URL containing a high number of subfolders. The implication is that the URL is generally long and contains many slashes all through. Often, the URL is needlessly complex, and it is best to simplify the URL string. Although a long URL string with numerous subfolders might not automatically diminish the performance of your website (or dent your page’s ranking as per Google), it will eventually make it more challenging to edit the URL strings. It also poses a more significant inconvenience for site users who prefer copying and pasting URLs and sharing them with others.
Numerous 404 errors And Redirects
404 errors occur as a result of broken links. A broken link inhibits the site user from accessing a page you are linking to, whether it is an internal or external link. Ultimately, these errors and redirects degrade the website’s user experience and force many people to stay away.
404 redirects refer to pages that open to tell the user that the page they are looking for is unavailable. There are numerous reasons why a page may not be available such as it any longer exists, it could have been updated, or the user needs to sharpen up their search to find what they are looking for. It is helpful to design 404 redirects to confirm that the users are on the right page, but the link has a minor issue.
Although 404 errors are often positive, having too many can negatively undermine the user experience and rankings on search results. Luckily, it is possible to keep track of 404 errors using Google Analytics. Google Analytics enables you to locate 404 errors on time and repair them before they cause more limitations to your users.
HTTPS Cannot Be Located
When developing a website, it is always best to use HTTPS protocol instead of HTTP. This is particularly vital if you intend to ask for your visitor’s personal information, like credit card numbers or email addresses. HTTPS offers a higher security level and supports the encryption of any data that can be moved from a user to your site. This way, it cannot be used if the data is hacked and intercepted during transmission.
Also, when developing your URL, decide what is best between using “www” and not using “www.” Many people can recognize a website address through the “.com” and no longer bother typing “www” into the address bar. Nonetheless, the prefix “www” is considered officially accurate and helps set your address apart from similar URLs for protocols like mail or FTP.
In addition, if your top-level domain is not entirely clear or identifiable, then including “www” will help to eliminate any concerns that the URL is a web address. If you opt to use “www,” then you have to set your root domain DNS A-record in the direction of the IP address of your web server. Ultimately, it can be highly inflexible if you have concerns over your site’s performance or availability.
Furthermore, cookies meant for domains that do not use “www” will be shared through your sub-domains regardless of whether the application relies on the data. It is also important to note “www” prefixes are necessary for particular applications like word processors and email clients that convert text to links. Generally, consider selecting a web server configuration setting that enables site visitors to submit a browser request using your domain, whether they are using “www” or not. Ongoing website upkeep services will help you avoid this issue.
Compatibility With Major Web Browsers
No operating system or software remains unchanging for a long duration. Over time, they experience changes to cater to the other changes and system upgrades in operating systems, hardware devices, plugins, standards, and other vital software. As each browser is upgraded, the risks to the website also increase significantly if there is no proper website upkeep.
For this reason, it is vital to see and confirm the appearance of your site when accessed through the main browsers: Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, Opera, and Edge. Most browser upgrades occur as patches to raise the site security level. For this reason, some visitors to your site might need to be more responsive about doing business with a site compatible with the main browsers. In such cases, there are serious concerns that the site may be exposed to online thieves and website security updates and software updates are vital.
Takes Too Long To Load A Page
If your site takes less time to open a page, it can lower your website’s appeal to your visitors. Few people are willing to wait for more than a couple of seconds for a page to load, particularly when they are already used to quality websites that load much more quickly. It is often relatively straightforward; your site visitors will be willing to find a site that loads faster than your site.
Usually, a more significant number of visitors to your site expect a page on your site to take two seconds to load. If the page takes longer than three seconds to load, there is a high chance that you will lose about 90% of the visitors who want to view that page. In addition, 79% of all visitors to your site that encounter slow loading speeds usually do not return to your website again.
To make matters worse, if you lose visitors due to slow loading speed, you can expect your site’s bounce rate to rise sharply. The bounce rate is an analytical indicator of how many people exit a page on your site without interacting with it any longer. A high bounce rate negatively impacts your search engine rankings.
Work With Guides To Reduce The Loading Time
Various factors determine the average loading speed for a page on your site, such as nonexistent mobile optimization and visual elements like animations and videos. You can assess the site speed of your pages by using Google’s Page Speed Online tool to measure how fast your site’s pages are loading. You can get access to numerous guides that show comprehensive steps to help you improve the loading speeds of your site’s pages.
Work With Experts
Compatibility With Mobile Devices
Studies by Pew Research Center indicated that, by 2018, about 77% of Americans owned a smartphone, and about 20% of American adults rely on their smartphone to browse the internet. The study also showed that mobile phones consume 52.2% of global online traffic. This shows that a substantial chunk of the traffic to your website will be generated through mobile phones now and in the coming years.
If your website cannot be accessed easily with a mobile phone, your site’s visitors using a phone will struggle to navigate the site and find the data they need. Other issues that can lead to substantial loss of potential leads include a website that does not load quickly, display content clearly, and is difficult to navigate on mobile phones. To make the situation a bit tricky, Google uses a different strategy to rank pages for mobiles from desktops. If your site is not optimized for mobile access, it can damage your ability to attract web traffic.
You can use several ways to enhance the compatibility of your site with mobile devices; however, using a responsive website design is the best way to optimize your site for mobile devices. With a responsive design, your website can display regardless of the screen size of the device you are using to access the site.
Failure To Regularly Back Up Data
You may have taken extra measures to safeguard the security of your site from online fraudsters and hackers. However, it is always best to be prepared to face the worst-case scenario. For example, if a hacker can go through your site’s security barriers, they can do away with the whole project.
Such an occurrence can be quite demoralizing and challenging. For this reason, it is always prudent to regularly back up your website to enable you to recover the most recent version of your site should hackers manage to penetrate it and bring it down. It might not always be possible to back up all your content, but it is a hack that can ensure you do not lose all your hard work and investment. Try to back up your website every week if you update your website regularly.
Does your business use other platforms to promote its brand? All the lowest organizations have a Facebook page for marketing their business online. Other platforms used for online business marketing are Twitter and Instagram. Also, a blog provides an effective strategy to gain more traffic and engage with a broader customer base.
Have you linked your online marketing platforms correctly? Can users easily find customer reviews, new Facebook posts, and an excellent photo collection directly from your home page? If there exists some gap between your online platforms, you are probably wasting numerous chances to grow traffic to your site.
To make the most of such marketing opportunities, we recommend that you adopt an integrated approach to help your business, like our unique and simple platform, “Social Brilliance,” designed to bring together helpful and relevant content! Also, remember to show your loyal customers here as well, as they can be effective brand ambassadors to promote your business and earn more clients.
OBSCURED INFORMATION OR A VAGUE POINT OF BUSINESS CONTACT
Let me ask one pertinent, straightforward question: How easy or difficult is it for a user to find a contact phone number, email address, or another support method on your website? For most businesses, it is essential to provide the required support on your home page right from the onset.
In truth, some of the well-established businesses are the ones that fail with this provision the most. Giant internet monoliths, such as Microsoft and Amazon, are particularly inefficient when availing the necessary avenue for human support. Many people tend to ask why such companies prefer to hide their company phone number behind numerous pages of general information such as Q&A.
For such companies, concealing such information is considered “creative accounting” and seeks to save them money and other resources. Nonetheless, for smaller business organizations, such poor strategies can lead to loss of leads and bookings without the website owners even realizing it!
Other than availing the required contact details and making them easy to find, most businesses in the hospitality industry that we have collaborated with prefer a live chat option. It provides a quick and easy way for site visitors to make inquiries and bookings as long as you have a dedicated staff to engage them all the time. Up to date information is vital here.
The Site Is Not Optimized For SEO
Visitors to your site must originate from somewhere specific. Your site must be appropriately optimized for search engine optimization (SEO) to attract these visitors. Correct SEO optimization enables bots to identify content on your site accurately and helps to boost your site’s rankings on SERP, thereby growing your visibility to your target market and generating more traffic. On the other hand, wrong SEO optimization will damage your site’s ability to get new leads.
Publishing Under Optimized Or Outdated Content
Besides using keywords, you will need to offer good value by sharing helpful information to enable visitors to find the solutions they are looking for. It helps to strengthen trust and boost website engagement data when you want to demonstrate a positive picture to Google.
SEO is not limited to incorporating keywords into your content; there are more needs than that. Indeed, using the right keywords can help your content rank; however, Google wants you to provide high-quality and relevant content that helps visitors and web browsers find value when they come to your site.
When evaluating the quality of your content, Google and other search engines study several ranking signals, like the number of external links your page has acquired from trustworthy sources (external links show your content was quality enough to link to) and how much a visitor has interacted with the page. Spending more time on the page, commenting, sharing the page, and “liking” the content on social media platforms are ways a user can engage with a page on your site.
A higher engagement level with visitors means the page will likely rank high in search engine results pages. The goal is to create and offer informative, high-quality, and relevant content to your target customers to strengthen their trust in your business and raise engagement.
Poor Use Of Header And Meta Tags
The headers you create to separate content on your site are critical for many reasons. Properly used headers (including the correct use of keywords) enable visitors to read through the content quickly and find out what the site is talking about. In addition, the headers help the search engines to know what your content is about and to index and rank your pages correctly.
Meta tags are also vital as they serve a closely related function as headers. Although meta tags are not displayed on your web pages, they will appear on the SERP. A meta tag refers to a snippet of text that gives a short synopsis of the content on a particular page on a site. Search engines and site users can rely on meta tags to determine if the webpage provides the information that is being sorted after by the user.
Crawl Path Concerns
The function of search engine bots is to crawl through each page on your own website and index and rank it correctly. They work by getting into the site through various entry positions and crawl as they move outwards. In the past, they began from the homepage and found their way through – they are now more innovative. If your site has poor website architecture, it can hinder crawl path concerns and inhibit the bots from finding all the pages correctly, damaging your search engine rankings.
There are several methods of getting rid of potential crawl path issues. To begin with, you can use a flat site hierarchy, which means that your site’s homepage is linked to your category pages, which are linked to your site’s subcategory pages, which are linked to your detail pages.
Creating a map enables the bits to crawl more efficiently, making site navigation more user-friendly for visitors. Even inaccuracies in your sitemap, like format errors or including the wrong pages, can lead to problems. Also, inspect your site to look for and fix broken links that may cause barriers in your website’s crawl path. This is all part of regular upkeep services.
Your homepage’s appearance is critical to your business and your website. Therefore, you must ensure the homepage makes a solid and lasting impression on the new people visiting your site. A common mistake businesses make on their homepage is attempting to put too much information on none page, making it appear messy. A messy homepage discourages visitors from reading your content as they need help finding what has been posted on the page.
Some people prefer to have duplicate home pages. This situation occurs when the site has several URLs that direct the user to the same homepage, like “www.domain.com/index” or “www.domain.com.” This may confuse your visitors and damage your ability to rank, as Google will consider every URL a distinct URL. Include a canonical tag to your main homepage URL to address this issue.
Complex Website Navigation
How easy it is to navigate your website defines a large part of your visitors’ user experience. For example, you will need to clean up a cluttered homepage to make it easy for your visitors to browse the site and spend more time there. The navigation bar needs to be easily visible to everyone who visits your site’s homepage.
In addition, avoid creating too many categories and subfolders in your site’s navigation bar. Although it helps to be organized, your site visitors may become overwhelmed if the navigation bar on your site has a disproportionate number of categories and subcategory options in the drop-down menu. Such a setup makes it hard for your potential customers to find the information they seek. It is best to limit your site’s navigation menu to the vital links on the website. A complete upkeep plan will help you avoid this.
Lack Of Specific Page Titles
The titles on your web pages show the content posted on any particular page. Lack of specific page titles creates chaos and confusion for your visitors – they experience more significant difficulties when looking for particular pages or noting the page they are on for future reference. In addition, it makes it more challenging for Google to index your site. When creating specific page titles, it is recommended that you use relevant keywords and maintain them below 70 characters.
Failure To Provide Contact Information
If you fail to provide your visitors with a method to contact you, you are giving them more reasons to hesitate to call you. Also, you have to make it easy for visitors to find your contact information on your site.
You might need to put your contact information on your site’s homepage. Many professional sites provide a separate contact page and display their contact information, like email address and phone number, at the top end of each page.