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Five easy ways to decrease your site’s bounce rate

You have a website – and the statistics look good.

At first glance.

As you delve into the pile of numbers that are part and parcel of any website’s statistics, you may find that although people are coming to your site, they are not staying very long – at all.

If this is the case, your site has a bounce rate problem.

For the novice, the bounce rate is the number (usually a percentage) of your site visitors that leave your site immediately after arriving. Now, there could be any number of reasons for this however none of them are good for your business. The aim of any good website is to retain visitors and make them into loyal customers – they should want to stay on your site but when they do leave, you know that they will come back.

Below are five (fairly) quick fixes to help you get that bounce rate down.

Fix #1 – Reduce the amount of time it takes to load your site

If your site is heavily loaded with content, it can take some time to load on a visitor’s computer/mobile. Add to that all the bangs and whistles that make a site look “pretty” and you risk losing them before they even see the content! A general rule of thumb is that the majority of information on your webpage should be loaded within five seconds (this used to be ten in the “old” days”).

Fix #2 – Make your Navigation Menu user friendly

Websites with only a few pages have this one already sorted – their menus are generally uncluttered and users can find what they want fairly easily. But what if your site has dozens of pages to sift through? Website visitors can easily be put off by a menu system that has too many options.

The solution is quite simple – group your pages into common categories and create a base menu using these. Then, with the help of a pop-out menu, you can then add all the other pages underneath.

If your site does have a lot of pages, be sure to include a site map in your footer because some visitors may head  straight for this.

Fix #3 – Ensure that your Call to Action is highly visible

Your Call to Action (CTA) is all important to your website. If the site doesn’t have a clear CTA, why is it online in the first place? Your visitors need to be able to find this with no trouble at all – if anything, it should be one of the most predominant items on any page – as easy to find as your logo!

If a site visitor can’t find a way to interact with or purchase from you, they’ll go somewhere else and up goes your Bounce Rate!

Fix #4 – Check that your site is mobile responsive

If your site is over five years old, chances are that it may not be mobile responsive. This means that your website appears exactly the same on a mobile or tablet as it does on a full sized computer. In turn, this makes your content too hard to see without zooming in – something that mobile users hate to do when browsing the web.

Never fear, this doesn’t always mean that a whole site rebuild is required. There a number of options available in most cases – just contact your website developer for more information (or get in touch with us).

Fix #5 – Tidy up that old, messy website

Whenever I start a new design for a client, I always take the time and cruise the internet looking at other websites in the same industry – just to see what is out there. Sometimes, I am astounded by the poor quality presented as professional websites. Some sites look like they have been there since the 90’s!

If your website does not convey your business brand as professional and “can do”, then it is unlikely to grab any potential customers, just on its appearance. Upgrade your site design and watch for the difference in response. If you look like you know what you doing, you are halfway to getting that client on-board.

 Finally, according to statistics, you only have 50 milliseconds (that’s five hundredths of a second) to make a good impression with your website.  And as everyone knows, a good first impression can last a lifetime.

Take look at your site with fresh eyes (better yet – get someone else with fresh eyes) and have a look at the repairs suggested here.

Does your bounce rate need a bit of a fixer-upper?

Five tips to help you get your business mojo back!

Business Mojo

Loss of business mojo happens to all of us from time to time.

As business owners, it can sometimes be hard to maintain enthusiasm and drive all the time towards our work. Sometimes it feels like we have lost our motivation and are just going through the motions in order to get things done. We feel no real urge to seek out and try new things (like marketing tactics). If this sounds familiar to you, then maybe your Business Mojo might just need a reboot!

This week’s blog post is not about website marketing at all however without the enthusiasm and internal drive for your business’ success, your marketing efforts will be “half-hearted” at best.

If you are looking for some help so get things going again, here five quick tips that I personally have found useful to get inspired and back on track.

1. Get out and Exercise!

This might seem a bit of a strange tip in a business and marketing blog, however I find my focus for the day is sharper after some form of morning exercise. A simple 30-minute walk or jog can do the trick and the best thing is you can kill two birds with one stone by exercising to some…

2. Podcasts!

There are literally thousands to choose from. The best way to find the podcasts bested suited to you is to have a look on Podcast One and Spotify. Once a niche market, there is literally a podcast for everyone and every topic out there.

A great podcast can expose you to a world outside the business that you generally work in and, just by listening to some success stories and the experiences of others, you might just find that missing spark you are looking for.

3. Reading

Once again, for those seeking external motivation from the best in the business, there is an abundance of great books that can get you inspired. Several great books that I can whole-heartedly recommend include:

  • Pour your heart into it – The Starbucks Story by Howard Schultz
  • Shut up and listen by Tilman Fertitta
  • The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy
  • The E-Myth Revisited by Michael E. Gerber
  • Crush It by Gary Vaynerchuk

I must confess that I have read a couple of these more than once just to try and squeeze every possible gem out of them! They are all written by people who have created their own huge success stories and it help me to think – there’s nothing to stop me being one too!

4. Talk to other like-minded business people.

Seeking and talking biz with like-minded business owners can be a powerful experience. But first you need to seek out an appropriate network. You could join your local Chamber of Commerce, start your own networking group, or just talk to friends who work in similar industries (or maybe completely different). If you feel a little isolated and don’t know where to start, get online and join a forum.

5. Sit back and reflect

Sometimes we get caught up in the day-to-day of our businesses and we lose sight of what we have achieved and how far we have come. Take some time out and think about when you started your business. What were your goals? Why did you start?

Look at old photos and worksheets. I love to go back and look at sites that I created 10 years ago and see just how bad they are! Of course, they didn’t look too bad back then but the progress since has made all of them look positively antiquated.

Guaranteed, if you look at the progress and successes of your business from where you have come from, you will start to see a clearer way forward and gain some of the motivation you think you have lost. You haven’t lost it – it’s still there, just hidden from view!

Have you got any tips to help get your business mojo back on track? Anything that will help a fellow small business owner reboot their enthusiasm? Share your tips by leaving them in the comment section below. I personally find the five tips above seem to do the trick for me but I’m sure there are dozens more out there – little gems that can help reignite that entrepreneurial spark that hooked us in the first place!

Email Marketing for your business vs the 2003 Spam Act.

Anyone with an email inBox has received SPAM at one time or another, probably on a daily basis.

As a small business in Australia, it is important to be aware that we have very strong laws that dictate who we send emails to and what we send them. The Australian SPAM act of 2003 outlines how commercial electronic messages (emails and texts) should be sent out to recipients by businesses and various organisations across Australia. There are some pretty serious fines involved if these laws are not adhered to so it’s important to have a firm grip on what’s involved before sending anything out at all.

By definition in the Spam Act, a commercial electronic message is a message that:

  • offers, advertises or promotes the supply of goods, services, land or business or investment opportunities.
  • advertises or promotes a supplier of goods, services, land or a provider of business or investment opportunities.
  • helps a person dishonestly obtain property, commercial advantage or other gain from another person.

The Act works out the commercial nature of a message by checking out the content, the way the message is presented and any links, phone numbers or contact information that may lead to content with a commercial intent.

When sending a commercial electronic message, there are three key areas that you must carefully consider: Consent, Identify and Unsubscribe.

Do you have the consent of the recipient?

You must only send commercial electronic messages to people if they have provided you with their expressed or inferred consent.

Inferred consent regards those customers that you maintain an ongoing relationship with and they have previously provided contact details.
As a guide, one-off purchases are not regarded as a basis for inferring consent.

Expressed consent is the permission you have received directly from the recipient where they have asked that you send them further information. This is found on most websites in the form of a subscription button but ensure that you make it very clear what will be received in returned and how often.

Does the message clearly identify how it is from?

All commercial electronic messages must contain accurate contact information that clearly identifies the business (or person) who is sending the message. This information must remain accurate for a minimum of 30 days after the message has been sent.

Can the recipient easily unsubscribe from the email messages?

All messages must have clear options to unsubscribe regardless of how long (or short) they are. This allows the recipients the ability to “opt out” of receiving further communications. Once someone has taken this option, it must be honoured within five working days or penalties may be applied. Just like the information identifying the business, the unsubscribe link must be valid for thirty days after the message has been received.

There it is in a nutshell. If a business sticks to these fairly simple guidelines, it should be fine to send out its electronic messages without a problem. But please take note that this information has been provided as a guide only. The team atTropical Coast Web Design does its utmost to make sure that the information on our web site and blog is accurate and helpful at all times. But, we can’t ultimately warrant the accuracy of all information and will not be held responsible or liable for how you use it with your business or organisation. Check out the Spam Act for yourself at ACMA’s Spam Act and Codes of Practice page for more detailed information and to make your own judgements.

Turbo-charge your site with some simple SEO tactics.

By now you probably that Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) plays a vital part in the success or failure of your website.

A site that has not been optimised for the search engines bots that roam the web will not rank well or even appear close to the top of search results. Research regularly shows that 70% of all clicks go to that all-important number one position in Google. That is why it is vital for your site to be the one that is appearing there.

But do you really need an SEO expert for your site to get it on that first page? Not necessarily, as there are some tasks that a website owner can undertake themselves before calling in the big guns.

To give your site that boost you are looking for in the search engines, you can try the following options:

Add an SEO plugin: These add extra functionality to your page editors allowing you to customise each page according to the content on each page and how you want people to find that information. For WordPress, use the Yoast SEO or All-In-One SEO plug-ins and for Joomla use Xmap or SEOSimple.

Add a Meta Description: This is an sentence that describes the content of the page to both search engines and visitors. It is also the segment of text that you see under search results in Google. Make sure that you include two keywords and a maximum of 100 characters.

Insert appropriate Meta Tags / Keywords: In the general options, add a maximum of five words, separated by commas. These stored in the head (start) of the web page document. Be sure to also include these five keywords inside the content text of your site. With the plug-ins mentioned, you will also be able to add keywords to each separate page of your site as well.

Use key words in your Page Titles: displayed at the very top of the web browser. It must contain at least two of your keywords and should also be unique for each page.

Make sure that all images have ALT Tags: These tags are the alternative text shown for when an image cannot be displayed. These tags are examined by the search engines so make sure that the tags you use are tied into the overall keywords for the individual page.

Check your H1 Titles: This is the largest title for each page, and it is usually displayed as the title at the head of your content. Make sure they are unique to each page and try to limit the number of words used.

Register your site with Google Search Console: This one action will be the most powerful SEO move of all (to this point). Not only will this make Google aware of your website, if it doesn’t already, but it will allow you to track how your site is power. Google Search Console will also contact you via email with personalised tips to improve your website ranking.

As you would expect, there are no guarantees that these will be sufficient to push your site to that number one position but if after a few weeks (be sure to give Google some time), there is no real change in your ranking, maybe it is time to seek further SEO assistance. If you need any more information on SEO for your site, or if you just want to leave me some feedback, leave a comment below and I will endeavour to answer any questions you have.

Tropical Coast Web Design