Every business should have a website to generate leads, sales, provide information, and customer service. When it comes to small businesses on a tight budget, the owner is usually the one in charge of the website: making changes, adding content, fixing issues (and breaking it too, let’s be honest).
Over the Memorial Day weekend, I spotted a cry for help in WordPress.org forum. This small business launched their WordPress website, but when they took it live few issues came up. Overlooking the migration issues, the website was not really well setup for success. I took the time to write up a few tips, in addition to assisting this business owner with the issues they had.
Your WordPress business website is a powerful lead generating machine if you take full advantage of it, and operate it with smart decisions backed by marketing. This is all too common, and I see it over a huge majority of WordPress business websites. Actually, some of theses issues were fixed for our new clients who signed up for our WordPress site care service over the Memorial Day weekend.
Here are my top 5 issues I see small businesses make with their WordPress websites, including quick fixes to get you where you need to be.
1. Not Search Engine Optimized
This website had no search engine optimization done. It had no custom titles, no customer descriptions, it had no Open Graph tags, and it had no sitemap. These are some of the basic things every website should have to improve search engine optimization. You have full control over it with your self-hosted WordPress website.
Setup WordPress SEO by Yoast plugin.
2. Not Performance Optimized
This website was not performance optimized. It did not have any caching plugins setup. Plus, I believe the website was hosted by GoDaddy’s cPanel hosting. That made me to believe the server-side compression was not active either. An average user does not know what it is or where it is. It is off by default on cPanel hosting. You need to give your WordPress business website a boost. Search engines do count performance in their algorithm, so this also ties into SEO.
Quick Fix #1
Setup W3 Total Cache caching plugin.
Quick Fix #2
If you have cPanel hosting, find an icon called “Website Optimization”. Click on it, and select “Compress All”, and save. Done.
4. Not Focused on Lead Generation
This is the issue with all small business websites that are managed by the owners without marketing expertise.
For example, this website hid “Contact Us” link inside a drop down for “About Us”. There was no easy way to get in touch with the business.
To add to that, there were no calls to action, no landing pages. The homepage did not segment traffic to increase conversions, and it did not get people to the information they are looking for.
Create a free offer landing page. If you’re a service business, offer free consultation. If you sell products, offer free order estimates or samples. You need to offer value in exchange for their contact information. Remember, leads charge value in exchange for their contact information.
4. No Google Analytics
Business owners don’t know what tools are available at their disposal. Many websites do not have any visitor tracking setup. This website did not have Google Analytics setup. You need this information to help understand where people are coming from, what content they love and hate, so you can make better decisions when it comes to producing content and making changes to your WordPress website.
5. Broken Elements
This specific website had a broken contact us page in addition to being hidden in a drop down menu. Plus, the theme that was used included social media icons but they were empty – leading to nowhere.
Broken elements show up when you least expect it for one reason or another. This was also an issue with our clients over the weekend, with a bunch of broken images, fonts, and broken pages due to plugin issues.
Occasionally, give you website visual inspection. Simply check pages and images and other media to make sure they are no broken. You can also use a free Broken Link Checker to check for broken links.
One item I did not include, yet it is also common, is website security. Unfortunately, this issue is so bad and exploited by hackers that it calls for a post of it’s own.