GUEST POST: 13 Questions to Ask When Reviewing Your Website - by Mariah Magazine

Your website is your baby.
It’s your online foundation.
You gotta pop in every once in a while and review it to make sure it’s still serving its purpose.

 

Now you’re prob thinking…..“What the heck should I look at?”

 

I put together this handy list of 13 questions to ask yourself while reviewing your website, so you can make sure it’s doing what it’s supposed to do.

 

Content:

  • Have you updated any dates & copyright notices for this year?
    Ever year (preferably in the beginning of the year) you should review and update any copyright dates or any date-specific text or references throughout your website. Having a copyright date of 2009 in your website footer just makes you look like you haven’t updated you site since dinosaurs roamed the earth….even if you have.
     

  • Is your contact information relevant?
    Get a new email address or phone number? Make sure these are updated. And while you’re checking this MAKE SURE you have at LEAST 2 forms on contact on your contact page, and include links to social media profiles. (example: If you have a contact form, also include your email address. Some people don’t like contact forms….and you always want a fall back in case that contact form is broken without you noticing)
     

  • Do you have broken links scattered around your content?
    Links change on the web, there’s no stopping that. But what you CAN do is stay on top of them and keep your links updated so they’re always leading to the right place. If your website is covered with broken links, it could negatively affect your SEO score AND frustrate your website visitors. Here’s a step by step tutorial to help you find AND fix your broken links!
     

Website Strategy:

  • Have your business goals changed?
    A lot of times when we run a business, that business changes and grows, as we grow. Sometimes that means we take a different path or veer off in a direction.

    Think about your business as a whole, and write down your goal(s) for your business. Now look at your website….does your website reflect that goal? Does it move people from website visitor, to customer/client?
     

  • Has your target audience changed?
    This question is SUPER important. I’m going to break it down into an example:

    Let’s say that last year you were super focused on website traffic, but this year you want to start engaging with your audience more. You want to start providing more value. You’re focusing on engagement now, instead of numbers. You’ve realized it’s quality over quantity.

    Your target audience before was “Bloggers”. But that’s not specific enough now.

    • What KIND of bloggers are you looking to provide value to?

    • Bloggers between the age of 18-25, or 55-65?

    • Are your target bloggers hanging out on Pinterest, or Instagram?

    • Do they blog on Blogger, Bloglovin’, WordPress, Squarespace, etc?

    • Are they looking to make money from blogging?

    • Are they in the beginning stages of their blogging journey or are they a long-time blogger?

    • Do they blog full time or as a hobby?

    • What are their biggest problems with blogging?

    • How can you help them solve those problems?

If my target audience are long term bloggers, posting an article explaining “How to get started blogging” wouldn’t really help them.

See why this is so importante for your website and content strategy? Just by asking yourself a series of questions, you can really focus in on WHAT your target audience needs.

 

User Experience:

  • Does your menu make sense?
    Are links labeled with descriptive text that provides a clear indication of WHAT info they’ll land on when clicking this link?
     

  • Is your menu overwhelming?
    Having too many options is overwhelming for website visitors and they won’t know which direction to take...which leads them to not taking one at all (yikes). Keep it simple, and utilize sub-pages, footer menus, and secondary menus when appropriate.
     

  • Is your sidebar overcrowded?
    The key to having an effective sidebar is by NOT jam packing it. You don’t want to overwhelm your readers with a busy sidebar. If it’s busy they won’t focus on your content, and they won’t know what to do next. This could discourage visitors from sticking around….which is the last thing we want.
     

  • Does your contact form work? (are you sure?)
    When’s the last time you’ve tested your contact form? Sometimes codes get messed up, especially when updating/lack of updating...so every few months it’s good to get in the habit of testing this contact form out. Because if getting people to contact you isn’t hard enough…..you don’t want the ones that DO to get lost in the shuffle.
     

  • How’s your ecommerce checkout functionality?
    If you sell stuff on your website….run a test payment every so often to make sure the checkout process doesn’t have any bugs or unwanted steps.

 

Technical:

  • How fast is it?
    When’s the last time you checked your website speed? This is one of Google’s most well-known SEO ranking factors….and that aren’t messing around. If your website is slow, especially on mobile, you could definitely be losing out on traffic. (And slow websites are a pain in the A for visitors. No one has the time or patience to wait 20 seconds for a page to load)
    Check your website speed for free using this tool: GTMetrix
     

  • Have you dropped the ball on SEO?
    Make sure that EVERY page and blog post on your website has a relevant keyword/keyphrase, descriptive SEO title, and an enticing meta description.

    Not sure where to start with all this? Snag The Beginner’s Guide to DIY WordPress SEO.
     

  • When’s the last time you looked at your Google Analytics info?
    This sucker is a GOLD MINE of information.
    If you don’t have Google Analytics set up on your website already, you can follow this Google Analytics Tutorial!

    Google analytics will give you insight on your website visitors and help you figure out which social media platforms drive the most traffic, which blog posts are the most popular, if the target audience you THINK you have…..are actually the humans that use your website, what words people type into Google to find your site, and seriously SO much more.

    If you want to improve your website THIS is the place to start.

    Oh and while you’re in there, make sure you’re blocking yourself from Google Analytics data so you don’t skew the results. And to make the dashboard less overwhelming, download the free Google Analytics dashboard (it just takes a few seconds, and a few clicks to set up but will save you a TON of time!).


 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Mariah is a website strategist and creative analyst that creates and develop a successful online foundations for entrepreneurs and small business owners. She helps website owners stop shooting in the dark and praying for results, and actually start using their website to get noticed online and grow their business. You can find her engaging on Instagram, posting YouTube tutorials, or hanging out in The Now What? Hook Up Facebook Group, a free community for website owners to help them figure out WTF to do next. Come join us!

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