Sam Makad is a business consultant. He helps small & medium enterprises to grow their businesses and overall ROI. You can follow Sam on Twitter, Facebook, and Linkedin.
One of the reasons businesses develop websites is to make it easier for their target audience to find them online. But not all companies that create websites reach this goal successfully. While many start off with dynamic websites, theirs begin to stagnate with time.
If you have a business website, looking for stagnation signs can help you. One of these is dwindling organic traffic. If the number of people who visit your website every month keeps dropping, it's an indication that your site is stagnating. Other signs are increased on-page bounce rates and a drop in the number of leads being generated from your site, among others.
This article would discuss the main reasons why websites stagnate as well as the strategies for resolving them. Continue reading below.
1. Slow Loading Speeds
In basic terms, loading speed is the time it takes for a web page on your website to open. Slow loading speed means it takes a long time for website pages to open on a user's device. As the world gets more digital, website visitors have become highly impatient and unwilling to wait for slow sites to load. Over a decade ago, people had no option but to wait for seconds for web pages to load due to the slow dial-up internet that was in use at the time.
Internet speeds have improved significantly over the years, allowing well-designed websites to load in milliseconds. Generally, people have a poor user experience whenever they come across slow-loading websites. They tend to give up on such sites quickly and opt to find what they want elsewhere. For any business, this means a loss of traffic and sales revenue.
The number of people who quit your site after opening a page increases as people find it hard to wait to get what they want. Also, slow loading speeds impact a website's search engine optimization because search engines consider speed when ranking pages. As these factors play out, your website begins to stagnate.
How To Improve Your Website's Loading Speeds
If you need to optimize your site's loading speeds, you need to talk to an experienced website developer like A1 SEO Glasgow and others to find out what's causing the slow loading pace. A good web designer should advise you on the infrastructure that your site needs to load faster. Ideally, your website should be hosted on a high-performance, dedicated server. Avoid shared servers as those can slow downloading speed, even if you have a well-designed site. Another way to make your site load faster is to minimize HTTP requests.
Every time a visitor opens a web page on your site, the browser pings the host server with a request for files containing the page's content. The server responds with the files, and the browser renders the page content. For each file that has the content of a given page, the browser creates an HTTP request. This means the more files there are on a page, the higher the number of HTTP requests and the longer web pages will take to load.
Besides reducing HTTP requests, ensure that your site's HTML codes get streamlined. Bloated HTML codes increase the data volume transferred to users, which slows down the loading speeds. Also, ensure that any images appearing on your site are optimized for the web. Placing large photos on your website causes the site to slow down. Consider image optimization plugins to reduce image sizes without compromising their quality.
2. Text Overuse
The other reason your website may stagnate is text overuse. Visitors find websites that have too much text overwhelming. In reality, most people skim through websites, and they rarely read through all the content. Sites that carry too much text appear cluttered in the sight of visitors, making it challenging to navigate.
Placing too much text on a website can cause it to stagnate because visitors find it difficult to find what they want. This makes them lose interest in the site and pushes them into finding what they need on other sites that offer similar services or products.
How To Avoid Text Overuse
If your website has too much text, you can improve it and make it more appealing by creating a balance between design and content. Find a template that allows you to use text and images to communicate to your audience. When looking at the design aspect of your website, you should ensure that the colors and fonts reflect your brand.
Pay attention to site navigation as well to ensure a good page flow. For the text aspect, make your website appealing by drawing in visitors to important information. You can do this by:
- Placing relevant images strategically on web pages
- Organizing content in bullet points
- Using icons to complement the text
- Using line breaks and white spaces to break text monotony
- Adding videos to web pages
- Varying images and background colors
- Using graphs and charts to summarize information
- Using text call-outs to highlight important points
Further, ensure that the text on your website is well-edited. Look out for typos, weak word choices, as well as unclear sections and fix them accordingly. Use catchy headlines and add internal links to other pages on your website. Paying attention to the design and text of your website gives your visitors a feeling that they've found the information they need.
3. Failure To Make A Website Mobile Responsive
Across the world, more people are opting to access websites via mobile devices like tablets, laptops, and smartphones, and not static desktop computers. This enables them to leverage the convenience that mobile devices offer in accessing websites anytime and from anywhere.
With many people opting to browse from mobile devices, responsiveness has become essential for driving web traffic. Between 2009 and 2018, the volume of web traffic generated via mobile phones increased gradually to hit a high of 52.2%, according to Statista.
The appearance of mobile responsive websites remains the same irrespective of the device that visitors use to access the site. The experience that visitors have viewing unresponsive websites on mobile devices is extremely poor. Images fall off the page, the text is too small, and scroll bars aren't always visible.
Further, such sites don't adjust to fit the screens of different devices. This means users have to keep zooming in to view web content. All these challenges cause visitors to lose interest fast and leave the site, which causes the website to stagnate.
How To Make Your Website Mobile Responsive
A mobile responsive site ensures visitors can access the content on your site via mobile devices without any challenges. The first step towards making a website mobile-friendly is using a responsive template to design your website. Optimizing the images and hosting the site on a dedicated server ensures your site loads fast and is easily accessible via mobile devices.
4. Outdated Content
The main reason people visit your website is to get information. Your website will stagnate quickly if your target audience can’t find updated content. When people open a site and find outdated content, they question whether the business is still operational. This impacts their perception of your business negatively and hurts your brand.
Updating web content regularly enables businesses to build trust among their target audience, particularly customers who rely on it for helpful information. Updated content also helps companies in building domain authority in their industry. This impacts search rankings positively because search engines consider domain authority when matching queries with relevant information.
How To Keep Your Web Content Updated
The easiest way to ensure your website content is up-to-date is to develop a content calendar to help you schedule, edit, and publish new content regularly. Besides posting new content, businesses should update older content to make it relevant and reliable. Content updates allow them to fix broken links and add new insights or current information to previous posts.
Further, businesses can maintain updated sites by revising their posts to include popular keywords in their content. To do this, you'll need to research keywords to identify those that attract or have the potential to drive traffic to your site.
The other way to keep web content updated is to repurpose old content. Repurposing content involves repackaging the information presented in old posts into different formats and disseminating it to grow your target audience. For instance, companies can turn blog articles into infographics or videos and share them on social media.
A website is a must-have for companies that want to grow their revenue and customer base. But creating one is just the beginning. To enjoy the benefits of running a website, companies must keep their audiences engaged by ensuring their websites don't stagnate.
When a website stagnates, visitors can't find updated information about your offerings. As a result, their interest in the business is lost. With time, the site's search engine rankings and domain authority drop. If you think your website may be stagnating, apply the tips discussed above to fix it. Consider the ideas mentioned here as you improve and optimize your site.
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