Is your new website not performing? If so, you’re not alone.
Company A was a successful electronics and components manufacturer. Recently recognized by Fortune as one of the world’s most admired semi-conductor companies, they were soaring toward their goals. They were flourishing not only financially, but also culturally. The company’s leadership met and agreed that the brand needed to convey more of their innovative, world-changing personality. Their solution? Redesign their website.
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Rebranding and redesigning the company’s website via a high-end firm was an investment, but it was sure to be worth it. The digital agency was making final touches to the layout and everyone at Company A was looking forward to the launch.
Fast forward several months and thousands of dollars later, Company A’s marketing team needed to update the website with new offerings, but they discovered they couldn’t.
The website’s pages were built in a completely customized manner, using code the marketing team did not understand. Updating even one line of text required a whole instruction manual! Not to mention, the site took several minutes to load on mobile devices. If the company were to invest time in making any changes to the content of the site, there would be no pay-off. The site was so slow to load that mobile users frequently gave up and navigated away from the page before they even viewed the content.
This made no business sense.
Company B found itself in a similar situation after recently re-branding its concept and value proposition. Their new website, which cost a pretty penny, looked great. It was an artistic masterpiece. At first, they were impressed. Until they realized the pages could not be updated at all!
Sure, a beautiful website was beneficial but had they known at what cost, Company B would not have moved forward with the agency’s proposal.
Do these predicaments sound familiar? If your new website is not performing, you’re not alone. There are a lot of people and companies out there producing beautiful apps and websites. Unfortunately, a lot simply don’t work. These are websites that belong in some sort of museum, housed within protective glass display cases. Look, just don’t touch! You might break it.
4 Keys to Fixing Broken Websites
The good news is your website’s poor performance can be redeemed. Our team of experts partnered with both companies and turned around their situation for the better. Our team preserved the aesthetic of each website while vastly improving performance.
Company A’s website now performs more than three times better, with a reduced bounce rate of 89% and a 30% increase in page views. We transformed Company B’s site from its completely un-editable, and therefore un-useful state, to a highly performant and functional component of their business.
Fixing these sites for the real world required some skillful surgical maneuvers. Here are four steps our web application developers commonly take to fix new websites that are not performing, even though they look great.
1. Optimize those beautiful images to lighten the site.
Pulitzer Prize-grade photography and custom vector illustrations make a profound visual impact on site visitors. But they also tend to be the “heaviest” items on a website. Sites bogged down with lots of weight are slow and dysfunctional. The slower the website, the more likely users are to leave, increasing bounce and exit rates. That’s why one of the first things we do is optimize images.
Image optimization offers performance increases that matter both to visitors and search engines. The process involves analyzing format capabilities, pixel dimensions, encoded data, image quality, vector versus raster, and many other factors.
Thoroughly optimizing images also includes applying keywords and adding alt tags. This step combined with faster, less bulky performance, goes a long way toward better search results.
2. Repair poor engineering.
Many agencies fail to properly configure sites to leverage browser caching, minification and concatenation. In order to turn your website into a sleek, performance machine, make all the necessary updates to take advantage of these highly necessary functions:
- Prepare websites to interact seamlessly with browsers. This is referred to as browser caching. Skipping this step results in repeatedly slow loading of your website every time someone visits.
- Remove unnecessary spaces and characters from files, which makes files smaller, and your website faster. This step is called minification.
- Concatenation reduces concurrent downloads and responses for faster, seamless performance. This involves grabbing the CSS and .js out of many files and placing it all in one, single file.
3. Make sure that all the tools required for proper SEO are in place.
A website can do very little for a business without effective search engine optimization. One of the four steps we take is to properly fit the company with everything it needs to implement an SEO strategy.
Among other improvements, our updates include:
- Adding schema markup to help search engines list the site more accurately for users
- Inserting proper meta tags such as H1s and title tags to allow search engines to read the page and accurately list it in search results
4. Simplify page structure so marketing and website maintenance teams can easily edit and update all pages.
Agencies are notorious for providing complex layouts that need to be pieced together to create a single page. These layouts can easily require a whole manual just to update website content. Our team reconstructs these layouts so you can make updates as needed, without having to track down the developer who put it all together.
Is your new website not performing? We offer our deepest condolences. After working with numerous companies let down by eager, yet foolish digital agencies, we’ve witnessed the frustration that comes with having a site that’s only fit for a museum. Not only do we understand what you’re going through, we know how to help.
If you’re in this situation and would like to learn more about making your site more performant, manageable and easy to find, feel free to reach out! Speak with one of our experts, no strings attached.