5 Signs Your Website Needs Work

If you have been working hard on your website, but you are disappointed in the results that you are seeing, then you may be overlooking some fundamental issues. Taking care of these issues will often help your website rise to the top of the rankings.

Your Website is Not Mobile Friendly

In a recent poll, 80% of users reported using a mobile device last year to search. Of those users, over 40% had completed a purchase on their mobile device. Furthermore, Google has gone to mobile-first indexing, and they automatically rank sites with mobile sites higher than those without one. The bottom line is that if your website is not mobile-friendly, the user will not see your website displayed adequately, resulting in a sale going to your competition. The answer to this problem is that you need a responsive design that automatically redesigns itself, depending on the user’s device.

Your Website Does Not Reflect Your Brand

Each brand is unique, and your website should allow customers to understand what makes you different from your competition. Unless you solve this problem, you may drive your target audience away. Start by ensuring that each page of your website reflects your brand’s voice. Find ways to make your unique selling point stand out. Be consistent by publishing new content regularly in different formats, such as blog posts, videos and podcasts. Promote your content in ways that will connect with your target audience and be willing to change those methods as the internet and people’s opinions change.

Your Website Cannot be Found on Google

If Google is not finding your website, then your target audience may not even know you exist. If you are creating a new website, it can take time for your site to rank well. Otherwise, several issues can cause Google not to find your site. You can identify most of them by looking at Google Analytics or asking an SEO company to review your website. Read the error reports and fix the problems. Be sure that you have not used code to block Google from crawling your site or specific pages. Use an XML map to show Google how your site is organized. If a penalty has hit you, immediately take care of the problem, but you may still have to wait until a significant algorithm update occurs to recover fully.

Your Website Runs Slow

There are many reasons that your website may be running slow. You must take steps to make it run as fast as possible as most customers will not wait longer than two seconds for your site to load before they head to your competitor’s business. Start by making sure that you are using a good host to handle your site at diverse locations. Clean out all the clutter that you have added to your site over the years. Then, enable your site to load some things as the rest of the content loads slower. Make sure that you have optimized all your files so that they will load as fast as possible.

Your Website Has Outdated Technology

Outdated technology causes your site to load slowly, and it may cause your site to be unresponsive. Take a minute to examine each piece of technology and see if there is a better option within your budget. You may discover that you no longer need that item on your website at all in many cases.

Taking care of these five things will help you rank better, which equates to more clients finding you. Then, offer them a reasonable price and outstanding customer service. The result will be a considerable improvement in your website’s conversion rate.

Google Algorithm Update October 2020

Google Algorithm Updates October 2020

While election officials may be having their battles being sure that they accurately count the vote, Google started October with a problem of their own.

Canonization and Mobile Indexing Issues

Google had to admit that canonization and mobile indexing issues caused some sites to drop in rank that should not have fallen and others not to appear at all. While the problem started about September 20, 2020, it continued well into October. While each issue affected only about 0.02% of websites, Google admits that with 1.2 billion webpages globally, you can easily see that this is a massive problem, especially if one of the impacted sites is yours. On October 15, Google disabled its tool allowing webmasters to ask that their sites be reindexed while they worked through the issue. That left many upset, but Google assures everyone that their robots are working correctly and finding pages and sites through normal means.

Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers or BERT

Google rolled out BERT on almost all English websites, and they estimate that it will affect about 10% of all websites in the world. They call it the most significant change in how their platform works since they introduced RankBrain in 2015. The intent behind BERT is to allow the search engine to understand natural language better. While Google says that you cannot do anything to influence BERT, which is being used globally on all featured snippets. Google says that all you can do is create content for real users using language that they would naturally use.

Passage Indexing

Another considerable change coming out of Google in October was their announcement that they were indexing passages. The search engine has not changed how they are ranking pages, but they are changing what they do with indexed content. The company says that they expect the change to impact about 7% of sites worldwide. When this change happens before January 1, 2021, in-depth articles with lots of content should rank better than shorter ones. You must use header tags to let Google know what cover on each page. According to Google’s post on Twitter, they now can rank passages independently of the page content to be sure that they deliver the best content to their users. Danny Sullivan, with Google, says that this is different from Featured Snippets because superior passages are identified using unique systems and will affect all pages when it goes live.

Updates to Search Quality Raters Guidelines

While the Search Quality Raters Guidelines do not directly impact your site’s rankings, the information in this document lets you get a strong picture of where Google is putting their emphasis. The new guidelines have a specific focus on meeting user needs. Google is now asking raters if content in featured snippets meets users’ needs or if they must click through to the site to get a full answer. Overall, the document this year held no significant changes, except that it ignored COVID and the elections.

Google has already promised significant changes before the year is up, so do not go on vacation too soon. Let us know if we can assist you in any way.