12. December 2016 · Comments Off on How You Can Effectively Improve Website Usability · Categories: SEO, Web Design, Web Hosting · Tags: , ,

If you’ve done any research regarding ways to enhance user engagement, then you’ve likely come across the topic of enhancing your website usability. In the most fundamental sense, website usability is defined as the ease of use experienced by visitors. Throughout our modern digital landscape, the overall usability of a website plays an essential role when it comes to attracting and retaining website visitors. Although there are many ways you can enhance your website usability, there are several universal tips many top professional feel are the most effective way to boost your overall usability score.

Throughout this article, we’ll discuss the most effective methods you can engage with to boost your overall website usability in the most efficient manner. Although your digital enterprise may have unique variables, if you follow the advice in this article, you’ll be well on your way to establishing a powerful and user-friendly website.

Before Usability and UX Testing – Get Faster Hosting

Selecting the right web host that can properly server your pages is essential to good usability and positive user feedback. If you’re just starting out developing your website, look into WordPress. Not only is WordPress very user friendly, but it is also infinitely customizable. The platform is so popular, in fact, that is accounts for roughly 27.4% of all websites across the internet (according to several recent surveys). Then you’ll want to select the best wordpress hosting for beginners to get up and running. Then launch a marketing strategy to gain new users and drive traffic to your website. Once you have a web performance baseline with your host and a pool of user data large enough to form a control, you may begin user testing.

The Core of Improving Usability – User Testing

Perhaps one of the biggest mistakes you can make when it comes to improving your website usability is trying to tackle this feat on your own. It’s almost impossible for you to truly understand how user-friendly your website is. The reason? You built the website and hold an intimate knowledge when it comes to navigating the site and accessing its various pages and features.

Therefore, the most effective way to improve your website usability is to engage in third-party user testing. There are three primary components when it comes to establishing an effective user test. These include:

1.) Similar Users – It’s important that the users you select to test the usability of your website are those who actually visit your website. For example, you wouldn’t want to call upon users who primarily surf e-commerce websites for a content-heavy informational website. It’s important to call upon users within your target demographic to perform the actual test.

2.) Specific Tasks – One of the biggest mistakes you can make when it comes to establishing an effective user test is to not instruct users on what to perform or what to accomplish. Of course, you shouldn’t provide step-by-step instructions. Rather, you should ask them to locate a specific product within a specific category. Or to perform a basic task, such as going to the blog and browsing several articles before returning to a specific product page. You shouldn’t over-instruct users as this defeats the purpose of understanding your organic website usability.

3.) Observation – Finally, you must sit back and observe your test users. Take note of how they interact with your website. Where did they go? Were they confused or frustrated while trying to find a specific product or page? Allow the users to communicate their experience with you in order to gain a full understanding of your website strengths and weaknesses.

12. November 2016 · Comments Off on How Your Website Hosting Provider Effects Your SEO Standing · Categories: SEO, Web Hosting · Tags: ,

It should come as no surprise to anyone who’s created a website that Google consistently changes their algorithms, which are an ever-evolving list of factors that determine how your site ranks within search results. Although these algorithms are constantly changing, the best way to stay ahead of the curve is to engage in white-hate SEO practices. While many of these practices are universally important, such as keywords and content quality, did you know that your website hosting provider plays a direct role in determining your overall ranking?

The website hosting provider you choose isn’t necessarily going to directly enhancing your search engine rankings. You won’t suddenly go from the 10th page within your keyword to the first page by switching hosting providers. However, if you choose a distrustful and flawed hosting provider you’ll soon find your SEO efforts aren’t enough to gain the coveted first page results.

The majority of new website owners select a hosting provider based upon their price. All these people see are dollar signs while they fail to understand that their provider does have a direct and indirect impact on your marketing efforts.

Perhaps the most important element when it comes to the connection of your web host and your search engine rankings is server security. The security of your website is vital when it comes to how Google and other search engines rank your website. If you choose a hosting provider with limited or basic-level security services, then Google will actually penalize your site ranking. Along with search engines deeming your site unsafe, visitors who have a questionable experience within your site will likely never return. This also hurts your overall ranking in search engine results.

Another essential element that search engines use to determine your ranking is the location of your website servers. Google determines on this location-based information even when users aren’t doing a location-based search. For example, if an American internet user is performing a search, Google will show priority to websites that are hosted on American-based servers instead of transferring information from an overseas server. The most important factor that goes into selecting a website hosting provider is ensuring their primary servers are located within the country where the bulk of your visitors will come form.

Finally, and probably the most important element within this article, is the performance of your servers. The speed and downtime ratio of a server plays a direct role in determining your overall search engine rankings. To increase your website’s speed, the most important variable is selecting the fastest web hosting service you can. From there the site’s structure, design and optimization is the next most crucial element to maintaining acceptable load times. It’s common for Google to penalize websites that feature slow loading/response times as well as those that experience frequent downtime. For further tips on website speed optimization, see Google’s developer tools here.