Maybe the web page isn’t driving the number of leads that you expected. Maybe the web page isn’t getting any traffic at all. Whatever the results (or lack thereof), it might be time to take a step back and take a closer look at what’s impeding your success by doing an audit of your web page.
Completing web page audit is a great way to start troubleshooting and identify any underperforming web page’s underlying issues so that you can put together a plan for improvement. Determine your next steps by using the following checklist as a guide through the process.
How to audit an underperforming web page
- Look for obvious errors
- Revisit goals
- Investigate analytics
- Review design
- Assess content
- Evaluate promotion efforts
- Execute changes and measure results
Step 1: Look for obvious errorsIf you’re lucky, there might be a quick fix. Check for any obvious issues and rule out any simple errors as a first step before diving too deep.
For example, maybe your web page has broken links. Perhaps there’s a form that isn’t functioning. Double-check to ensure everything is loading properly and test any custom functionality for errors. If you find any problems, fix them, and see if that improves results before moving on.
Step 2: Revisit goalsIt’s worth revisiting the goal(s) for your web page to see if the issue is with your expectations rather than with the page itself.
Is what you’re aiming to achieve realistic? What research did you base your desired outcome on, if any? Consider HubSpot’s SMART goal criteria: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely.
If you’re confident in the set goals, then the next step is to look more closely at the page itself.
Step 3: Investigate analyticsReview your web page’s analytics as a way to narrow down the source of the problem and highlight key areas for improvement. Look to find out which data points stand out as less than ideal. If possible, compare your underperforming web page with a similar high-performing page on your website to get a better idea of what might be causing it to fail.
While the ideal data points depend on the purpose of your web page, when you audit your web page, here are some examples of common issues to look out for:
- Low traffic: If your web page isn’t getting much traffic, it may indicate that it isn’t easy enough for users to find, you need to work on SEO, or you aren’t adequately promoting your content.
- Wrong traffic: If your target audience isn’t visiting your web page, it may mean that you need to work on SEO.
- Low bounce rate: If your web page has a low bounce rate, it could indicate that there it needs a clearer or more relevant call-to-action to guide users onto next steps.
- Short amount of time spent on page: If customers aren’t spending much time on your page, it may mean that its content is not successfully engaging users.
Learn more about how to review your website analytics and gain actionable insights:
- Evaluate your website analytics like a web design agency
- How to use web analytics to improve your website
- Improve your marketing strategy using analytic data
Step 4: Review designIt’s possible that the design of your page isn’t organized in a way to help achieve your goals. Review your design for anything that might be negatively impacting the user experience.
Is the navigation clear? Is the primary call-to-action placed prominently? Are the sections of the page easy to scan to find what you need?
Furthermore, don’t forget to make sure the web page is optimized for viewing from mobile devices. Is it usable on a smartphone? On a tablet? To maximize success, your web page should be accessible and easy to use for all visitors.
Even small design changes can have a large impact on the usability of a web page. Don’t make the design of your web page an afterthought.
Learn more about how to effectively review your web page’s design:
- 8 marketing-focused questions to ask when reviewing a web design
- Top reasons why your website should have a user-centered design
Step 5: Assess contentTake a closer look at the wording (e.g., headlines, subheadings, copy blocks, call-outs, etc.), imagery (e.g., illustrations, infographics, photography, etc.), and other elements (call-to-action, sub-navigation, forms, etc.) used on the web page itself and whether or not they support your goals for the page.
Here are some questions to ask when reviewing the quality and effectiveness of your web content:
- Is the purpose of the page clear?
- How quickly can users find answers to questions?
- Is the text written with your target audience’s needs in mind?
- Are you using the right keywords?
- Is the call-to-action relevant to the purpose of the page?
- Are there too many call-to-actions?
- Is the copy errors-free? Is it easy to understand? Does it sound professional?
Learn more about crafting effective website content:
- Digital cross-pollination: the secret to content that counts
- 6 tips for writing better website copy
- Your website content is more than just words
Step 6: Evaluate promotion effortsPromotion is important to get your content out in front of the right audience. If you aren’t efficiently promoting your content, you probably aren’t seeing results.
To start, make sure your page is easy to find on your website itself. Can users easily navigate to your page? Are you linking to it from all relevant places on other pages of your website? These are both easy ways to increase traffic to your page.
Then, assess any external promotion you are doing. If you are running ads or posting to social networks, make sure you are posting to the social networks that are actually used by your target audience. Review your posts to make sure you’re using the right wording and images to appeal to your target audience. If not, figure out the problems and make improvements accordingly. If you’re using email marketing to promote content, check that you are sending to relevant, engaged subscribers.
Take advantage of information from tracking and analytics to evaluate the level of success across promotion efforts and identify any weak points.
Learn more about improving your marketing strategy:
- How to create a marketing plan for your next campaign
- Why inbound marketing could be the best thing for your marketing plans
Step 7: Execute changes and measure resultsAfter you’ve worked your way through these steps, you should have a good idea of the action items needed to improve your page. Prioritize your list and start making updates one at a time. It’s best not to make more than a single major update to a web page at a time. Otherwise, it will be difficult to determine the impact of each individual change.
Once you have a sufficient amount of data for comparison, analyze the results from before and after you made each update to determine if the change is making any positive or negative impact on your web page performance.
Remember, it might take some trial and error to find the right solution, and significant improvements don’t typically happen immediately. Stick with the refinement process and keep making changes until you start seeing results that help you meet your goals.
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