In 2007, Akamai published a web optimization study showing that for every 100 milliseconds that page load time increases, sales decrease by 1%. Amazon also found that for every 100 milliseconds of improvement to their site speed, they saw a 1% increase in revenue.
Web optimization is most critical because there are more content and media noise than ever before on the web and social networks. Today, a business needs to compete with the local and nationwide, if not international, organizations. A corporation or individual can accomplish this by making an optimized website that stands out in search engines. You can rank your company above the rest on the SERP by understanding web optimization and learning some basic strategies.
It is essential to mention that a small business can compete with much larger organizations through web optimization, appealing to niches that you can find on the web using keywords and Inbound Marketing.
Web optimization is such a powerful tool that, since its conception, the norm is to have it, and failing on it is against the most basic concepts of having a website in the first place.
What SEO is
One of the most important aspects of web optimization is SEO. Search engine optimization (SEO) is a form of internet marketing that lets you make your website more visible and accessible to visitors. It affects how much traffic your site can receive, how people perceive your site, and whether they will return to it or not. SEO is to encourage brand recognition and create leads for your business. The core principles of SEO involve writing relevant, accurate, and concise content. Instead of making visitors hunt for the information they need on your website, your web should present it clearly when they look for it.
SEO improves the visibility of a website, page, or app on a search engine results page (SERP) to make a company’s website more discoverable (i.e., on the first page), thereby driving traffic and sales. Tedious, involving technical and business decisions, and not guaranteeing results—it nonetheless provides lasting benefits.
SEO often involves:
- Send the correct information to be recognizable and understandable by the Search Engines.
- Improving the quality of the content, both copy, and images.
- Have an optimal page content structure hierarchy based on titles(h) and relevancy.
- Database generation.
- Understand the data and report generation.
SEO also ensures that the site’s HTML is optimized such that a search engine can determine what is on the page and display it as a search result in relevant searches. These standards involve using metadata, including the title tag and meta description. Cross-linking within the website is also essential.
Effective SEO requires multiple interrelated activities on all fronts: relevancy, keywords, link building, on-page, and technical optimization, and relevant content generation. It creates a need for various tools to create awareness of your brand through organic (free) channels.
Why Use Web Optimization?
Beyond its definition and what you can do with it, why to use web optimization is also an important topic, so here’s a list of reasons why you should use it.
Increase in organic traffic from search engines
Using Web Optimization, you stand a greater chance of being found on search engines and building traffic for your business. Beginners should start with on-site optimization techniques such as keyword research and site structure to ensure that the foundation of their site is optimized for Search. Advanced users can try long-tail keyword tools and link-building strategies, adding even more traffic to their website.
You need a constant stream of new leads
When selling, you need to have a steady flow of leads coming through your sales funnel. Otherwise, you’re going to struggle to meet your targets. Using web optimization can ensure that you’re getting the most out of your web traffic and converting a high percentage of visitors into leads. With more leads in the sales pipeline, you can see a significant increase in revenue over time.
You want higher-quality leads
The vast majority of businesses would agree that they want their sales reps speaking to high-quality leads rather than just anyone who visits their website. Using web optimization strategies can help ensure that only the correct type of people make it into the sales funnel, saving time for both your marketing and sales teams.
You want to get more out of your acquisition spend
For most small and medium-sized businesses, acquiring customers isn’t free. It requires spending money on marketing techniques such as content creation or email marketing. These tools are time and budget consuming, and the best results you get the cheaper is every single lead you get.
Better User Experience
If your website loads slowly, has too many ads or is hard to navigate, people will leave without even looking at what you have to offer. This means that your bounce rate will be high, and your users will not be happy with the experience they have on your website. This is why web optimization is so essential – it can help you retain customers and make them come back for more.
Ensure a user-friendly experience across all screens and devices
Sayin that mobile usage for web surfing is growing is an underestimation; It is all grown up already and going to school!. And this is where responsive web design comes into play. Responsive web designs adjust to their environment, providing an optimal viewing experience for users of all mobile devices and desktop machines. By understanding how to optimize your site’s content across all devices, you can be confident that new website visitors receive a user-friendly presentation each time they visit a page.
Higher Conversion Rates
Increasing your conversion rate won’t be easy, but it will be worth your investment time and energy. The first step is to get started by choosing a good niche for your site, researching your target audience, and finding the right keywords for your content. Then you’ll need excellent content that addresses the needs of your audience, has a strong call-to-action, and captivates them from start to finish. Lastly, continue testing new ideas to adapt along the way. None of this will happen overnight—optimizing your website can take months or even years.
Lower Bounce Rate
If your website’s visitor is less than 2 seconds on your website, they’re probably going to leave without taking any action. There are many reasons why someone would leave, but the most important reasons are: they can’t find what they want to do and don’t see any benefit from staying on your site anymore. This article will focus on how landing page optimization helps you improve your online marketing results by increasing conversions while reducing bounces.
Web optimization is a good investment because it reduces operating costs and increases revenue.
Optimization studies, when implemented, can reduce costs and improve customer satisfaction. For example, a survey of the checkout process can identify unnecessary steps that make it difficult for customers to purchase products. Removing those steps increases sales while reducing customer support costs. Another example is optimizing the search process by making the default search more relevant so that the website returns the best-selling products at the top of the list rather than burying them among dozens of less popular products. This reduces operating costs by making it easier for customers to find what they want without calling customer service or sending emails asking for help.
Web Optimization numbers
To better understand this tool, we should look at some key statistics, numbers, and charts.
- The top 3 organic search results receive more than two-thirds (68.1%) of all clicks on the Google Search page.
- A snippet, which takes the place of the #1 organic search result, is the search result with the highest overall CTR at 43.7%
- The #1 organic search result receives, on average, 19x more clicks than the top paid search result.
- The #1 organic search result receives more clicks than results #3-#10 combined.
- The top paid search result has a 31% higher CTR than the #2 paid search result.
By these numbers, we can see that search engine optimization is much more efficient than search engine marketing in the long run, but not as immediate. The fact that the first organic result receives 19x more clicks than the first paid result is just crazy.
Visualizing Search’s Dominant Channel Share
Organic Search remains the dominant source of trackable web traffic and in the dominant position as a channel. Paid Search continues to grow. Organic Social Media has been flat since 2014 at 5%, and though ubiquitous, it contributes on average 1/3 as much traffic as Paid Search and just 1/11 as much as Organic Search.
Source: BrightEdge Research
Search Engine Market Share Worldwide
This chart shows that Google is the major player in the Search Engine market, followed by Bing and Yahoo, both mainly used on the U.S. territory.
Mayor SEO providers sales worldwide (in million U.S. dollars)
Here we can appreciate how big is the SEO provider Market as of 2020. There is a lot of business to do here.
By looking at the major players, channels, and providers on SEO and Search Engine, we can formulate a good idea of how the online search market works. Google dominates the search engine markets while the organic traffic is the most influential on the search channel. The biggest SEO providers are Semrush, a tool we frequently use at Scalater.
How to Make Web Optimization
As with everything, there are several ways in which you can develop Web Optimization
With this approach to web optimization, you improve your site’s coding and structure so search engines can crawl it more effectively. This is often a technical process that requires someone with programming experience, but there are some aspects that anyone can handle.
There are many ways to improve your website code. Here are some examples:
- Gzip is a file format and software application used for file compression. Gzip helps reduce the size of your files by up to 90%.
- Use browser caching: When someone visits your eCommerce website for the first time, essential resources such as images and stylesheets are stored on the user’s computer so that returning visitors won’t have to re-download those files again.
Optimizing a website for users isn’t always the same as optimizing it for search engines. For example, while some people might find Flash content easier to interact with, search engine crawlers have trouble reading and indexing it. Technical optimization is about making sure engines can easily index your site and find all its relevant content to get ranked for precisely what you want.
One of the most effective web optimizations is optimizing its content. You can do this by using the most relevant keywords to your industry in your content. For example, if you have a web about cars, then you should use keywords such as cars, cars for sale, used cars, or new cars. By using these keywords in your content, search engines will be able to find your website more quickly and therefore increase the number of visitors who come to your website.
The foundation of SEO is content — text on your pages that provides context for both your visitors and search engine bots. But not all content is created equal — high-quality content will give the most value for your visitors and encourage them to link back to it. And links are one of the primary ways Google determines which sites rank for which keywords in its results pages (SERPs).
A content optimization strategy is a foundation for any successful campaign, whether SEO, PPC, or social. Content optimization is about creating content that appeals directly to your target market. This means focusing on keyword relevance on every page and understanding what types of content will appeal most to your target audience.
Here are three steps to follow to build an effective content optimization plan.
Step 1: Know your target audience
The first step in creating an effective content optimization strategy is to know who your target audience is. You need to create detailed buyer personas that represent your ideal customers to do this, including demographics, goals, problems, and motivations. Buyer personas should be based on data and feedback from existing customers and prospects.
Step 2: Know what your audience wants
Now that you know your target audience, you need to understand what they want. The process of creating great content starts with a thorough keyword research process. Keyword research provides insight into what terms people use when searching for information related to your product or service, so you can create content that explicitly targets those keywords (and their associated topics).
Step 3: Know what your competition is doing
It’s essential to take a look at what your competitors are doing so you can learn from their mistakes and successes. In addition to looking at their websites, it’s also a good idea to check out their social media accounts.
The foundation of creating content that ranks is keyword research. No matter how great your content, it simply won’t rank well in search engines without the right keywords.
However, keyword research has become more complex and sophisticated over the last few years. The days of just targeting a single keyword are long gone, and people don’t just type keywords into Google anymore.
It is crucial to keep in mind that you should use these keywords throughout your website in a variety of different locations, such as:
- Page titles
- Meta tags
- Image alt text
Keyword research can be done using free tools such as Google Keyword Tool and Wordstream’s Free Keyword Tool. When selecting a keyword tool, look for something that provides information on search volume and difficulty scores.
Off-page optimization, also known as off-page SEO, involves improving your site’s authority by earning backlinks (links from other sites to yours) and social shares. Off-page optimization factors relate to external factors. These are things you can’t entirely control, but you can influence.
Link building has changed considerably over the years. It used to be easy: you could create many low-quality directories with exact-match anchor text and see your rankings shoot up. But link building has become much more complex, especially since Google’s Panda Update, and today it’s all about earning links through creating high-quality content and promoting it smartly.
Social media isn’t directly included in Google’s ranking algorithm, but it can affect search results indirectly. Social media can drive traffic to your site, boosting your rankings if all other factors are equal.
Even though social media traffic doesn’t directly affect your SEO, it does help you build brand awareness, which helps with branding — another vital aspect of off-page optimization.
- Links from other websites to yours (also known as “backlinks”), which show search engines that your website is a high-quality resource and should be listed higher in the search results
- Social media mentions of your website give you visibility, helping indirectly.
- Organic sharing of your content on social media sites can build a community for your business.
- Get other well-known websites to publish guest articles or posts on their site with links back to yours.
A/B testing is a form of multivariate testing where you show two or more variations of a page to users at random and then measure the effect each variation has on your conversion goals.
In A/B testing, you make a change to one element on your page and track the impact it has on your overall conversion rate. You then compare this rate to that of your control, which is the original version of the same page. The difference between these two rates is called “lift.” If you see an increase in conversion on your test page compared with the control, then you know that particular change was successful in improving your conversion rate.
But getting an accurate measure of lift can be tricky. Let’s say that out of 1,000 visitors to your product pages, 10% converted (100 people). Now let’s say that you ran an A/B test, sending half of those visitors (500) to the control and half to the test page. In reality, due to chance alone, some tests will give you false positives (you think they’ve improved when they haven’t), and some will provide you with false negatives (you believe they haven’t improved when they have).
Quality Assurance(QA) testing is the practice of testing a product, service, or feature before it launches to the public. The goal is to ensure that it works well and meets the needs and objectives of the user, customer, or business.
QA testing is essential for web optimization because you are not just launching a new website or feature. You are providing a website experience. And this experience needs to be functional across many different devices and operating systems.
For example, you can use software in your QA process to mock an iPhone 6 and test it on Safari. Or you can test on an iPad with Chrome. This ensures that your web optimization will look great no matter what device someone uses to view your website.
Dips and Tips of Website optimization
Here are some tips you can apply today to improve your website optimization.
- Use a content management system (CMS) that is search engine friendly.
- Create meaningful URLs for search engine optimization by using text explaining what is on the page.
- Use descriptive and unique title tags on every page of your site, as title tags are essential for both SEO and social sharing sites like Facebook and Twitter.
- Use headings appropriately with H1 tags used only once per page and H2, H3, H4, and other header tags used to break up content into more digestible sections.
- Create a robots.txt file to prevent crawlers from accessing certain parts of your website like private folders and files or pages you don’t want to be indexed, such as “thank you” pages after completed forms.
- Make it shareable by adding “share this” buttons on all your web pages so visitors can easily share your content through social media channels.
- Add RSS feeds so visitors can subscribe to updates on your website, blog or e-commerce store through an RSS reader such as Google Reader or Feed.
Who Uses Web Optimization
So, who adopts web optimization practices? Well, some of today’s most successful companies have found that web optimization has helped them boost sales and revenue by leaps and bounds.
For years, a few big businesses have used web optimizations: Amazon, Google, and Facebook. They’ve all decided that they need to rank higher than their competitors and that they need to be more visible in search engines to reach more people.
Amazon’s use of web optimization is most apparent with its ability to rank so highly for relevant keywords. Still, it also uses other techniques like creating unique product pages for each item sold on its site and offering free shipping on orders over $35 (which has been shown to increase sales). Amazon increased yearly revenue by $1.6 billion by increasing page load times by 100ms, while Walmart increased revenue by 2-3% by decreasing page load times.
Google has been so vocal about site speed that it even created its own tool called PageSpeed Insights to help users check their page speed and find suggestions on how to improve it.
Google uses site-wide options like title tags and meta descriptions, and content management.
On Facebook, page speed is a factor for ranking in newsfeeds. In fact, in 2015, Facebook reduced the number of newsfeed posts from friends and family to prioritize page loading time.
eBay once found that for every 100ms of latency on desktop web pages, there was a 1% decrease in conversions. This is why they made site speed one of their top priorities in 2016. In 2017 alone, they reported an 8% increase in revenue.
Shopify found that by reducing their load time by 2 seconds, they could add $100 million to their annual revenue.
By speeding up its mobile site by 60%, Pinterest reported that search engine traffic increased by 40%.
Increased conversion rates on their homepage by 34% using a website optimization tool
boosted their conversion rate by 14.79% using A/B testing software
All in all, there are countless benefits to website optimization. It’s a simple process and one that will benefit any kind of website or e-commerce platform. The sooner you begin to optimize your site, the sooner your rankings will start to rise. Ensure that your website is fully optimized by doing a few quick checks and implementing some of the aforementioned techniques.
Small businesses may not realize all the benefits a simple site optimization offers. A good, comprehensive web optimization helps a company to all its pages rank better, both on PPC and organic search results. This means more visitors are likely to visit your site, and since you’ll be viewed as an expert, your chances of converting those visitors into paying customers are also expected to increase. Finally, adequately optimized pages will also help your inbound marketing efforts as well as future social media prospects. Significant gains for such a minor investment!
Without web optimization, your website cannot be found. That is the cold hard truth. With SEO and a few techniques, you can get the prominent placement on search engines that you deserve. It’s better not to take any chances when using your website as a business venture or just for personal uses like hosting pictures for friends and family to see.
The most important thing to remember when optimizing your website is that there is no single solution. Each site may have its own peculiarities and challenges, which need to be addressed individually. No one solution will work for every site out there. That is why it is so vital for you to seek professional assistance in optimizing your website. A professional web design expert knows how to approach the web optimization process from multiple angles, each adding incremental improvement until the website begins to rank on the first page of major search engines. They may also use available tools like Google Webmaster Tools and Google Analytics to help you optimize your site and make it as profitable as possible. By bringing all these elements together and being flexible with solutions, your site will be more successful in reaching more people looking for solutions like yours.
Finally, May will be all about Web Optimization here at Scalater Magazine. Starting with this issue, we’ll elaborate a comprehensive guide to understand, apply and take advantage of Web Optimization and SEO practices, both at a small business and a large corporate level. Hence, you know what you can expect from these techniques and how to talk to an eventual SEO provider if you have the budget to hire a professional or an agency.
This is our largest Magazine article so far, so we thank you a lot if you endure it all the way to the very end.
HAVE A NICE DAY.