A similar pattern is evident in companies everywhere: a lot of search engine optimisation (SEO) efforts and energy are focused on chasing page views while User Experience (UX) is left by the way side. In today’s content-first and user-defined digital landscape, this disconnected approach ultimately translates to disappointed users and no sales.
For most organisations getting traffic to the website is nice, but not enough on its own, as any metrics should ultimately translate into real value for the business. So you managed to rank for your desired search terms and your website is raking users in? Great, but if they are failing to engage with your content and bring measurable value to your business, you are falling short of the finish line. To generate real value, UX and SEO must be fully aligned, working toward the same purpose.
UX encompasses all aspects of users’ interactions with your company online, and it works to achieve business objectives by meeting the needs of the customer, simply and effectively. The importance of good UX can’t be stressed enough, as research show that 88% of online consumers are unlikely to return to a site after a bad experience. This means that majority of business only have one chance at making an impression, so learn to make it count. In most cases, the easiest and best way to do so is outlined below.
This cannot be emphasised enough as, according to Google, nearly half of all visitors will leave a mobile site if the pages don’t load within 3 seconds, and 52% of online shoppers claim that quick page loads are important for their loyalty to a site.
In a recent example, our SEO experts performed image optimisation on a client’s site to save over 300Mb, and improve the loading speed of pages by 6-8 seconds. While this may not seem like a lot of time on paper, the website’s engagement metrics saw immediate improvement, with the average bounce rates across all digital channels dropping by over 28%, average session duration increasing by over 40%, while pages per session increased by a whopping 176%.
As well as image optimisation, other speed improvements can be made by employing quality web hosting services in your primary location of business, as well as using code minification and other code optimisation techniques. You can also find some good optimisation opportunities specific to your website by running it through Google’s Page Speed Insights tool.
Simply put, your aim should be to meet the users’ expectations as quickly and as easily as possible. Pretend you’re a customer visiting your website for the first time and explore it with the end goal in mind. If you’re an online retailer, how many clicks is the purchase path on your eCommerce website? How easy do you make it for someone to achieve that post purchase afterglow? Some things to consider include: ease of checkout, simplicity and effectiveness of navigation, as well as the quality of content and whether it is relevant to the users’ queries.
When evaluating your website’s UX, use all available resources to gather as much data as possible. Your Google Analytics account has a wealth of information about your website’s purchase funnels, user flows, high conversion and abandonment areas, and much more. Other tools like Crazy Egg can also help supplement basic analytics with features such as heat maps, while a handy Page Analytics browser extension can allow you to see how users interact with specific elements on your site. Bringing all of this information together can help you identify and prioritise lapses in UX that require immediate improvement.
Think like your consumers and speak their language. Don’t use convoluted words to describe your product, simply because it sounds cool in your head. “Excellent Cost Effective Family Vehicles” may look good on paper, but when your customer is searching for “Cheap Cars in Sydney”, ranking for the latter search term is far more valuable.
Determine how to best accommodate your customers in their time of need by analysing user intent. This will help you spend less time trying to rank for keywords that are less relevant and don’t match your audiences’ search queries. This, in turn, will enable you to focus on driving real impact and conversions, not just a high volume of irrelevant traffic.
If any of this seems complex or you simply don't have the time or resources to dedicate to SEO or website development, contact us for a comprehensive solution that will help you achieve your business goals.