What exactly is a good website? That’s the most important and frequently asked question in my field. Here is an extensive checklist with 13 qualities of a good website:
Provides value to the visitor
I think this really should be your starting position as website owner, offering value to your visitors (reciprocity). This is what my entire marketing philosophy and website strategy is built on. Also in terms of SEO I am in favor of writing for your visitors and not for Google.
I don’t focus on keyword density and backlinks, I focus on publishing unique and valuable content for my readers. Google’s goal is to show the most valuable/relevant websites at the top of a search. It can’t hurt to adopt the same vision as Google and thus ensure the most valuable website in your field instead of the most optimized…
Has a strong position in the search engines
With spot on number 2: A strong position in the search engines and in my case (Dutch market) in Google. A website with a good position in Google can be seen as a piece of virtual real estate. It delivers you every day large amounts of free visitors where you as a website owner can get results.
Search engine optimization is often seen as difficult, technical, boring and as long term work but that’s not the case anymore. It pays to set up your website well for the search engines in the basics. By working with a system like our Phoenix System or for example WordPress you are already a long way.
There are dozens more things you can do to completely strengthen your website, think of:
- good title tags and meta descriptions
- google friendly urls
- internal links (spider web on your website)
- related articles and breadcrumbs
- alt tags and title attributes
- image optimization
- optimize blog categories
and many others
A Website Has clear goals
A good website has clear goals, there are usually only a few because the more goals your website has, the lower the result per goal is usually. Good to know: if you as a website owner do not have clear goals and have not prioritized them, then you can be pretty sure that your website is not optimally designed.
Determine for yourself what you would like your visitors to do on your website, then there can be several things:
- Opt-in (building a mailing list)
- Product sales (e.g. via a sales page)
- Fill in contact form
- Request Quotation
- Dial phone number
- Leave a reaction
- Click on Google Adsense advertisement
- Watch video
Achieves result/is effective
Do you know the 2-second rule? Research shows that an average visitor to a website only takes 2 seconds to decide whether to stay on that website.
So what you need to make clear within 2 seconds is:
- Who you are (you and your niche)
- What you do (which problem do you solve)
- Why the visitor should stay… (USP)
Measure statistics in detail
To measure is to know and not to measure is to sweat. Measuring is also learning, by having insight in your grades you learn from your visitors how well you are doing with your website. In the end you need to have insight in all statistics of your website, if you don’t have that you can’t make objective decisions and you can’t achieve maximum effectiveness.
Measure for example:
- How many visitors did I get
- Where did those visitors come from
- What did they search Google for
- Where did they come in on my website
- How long did they stay
- How many pages have they visited and which
- What percentage of visitors subscribe to the newsletter?
- How many percent of visitors buy my product
- How much does a visitor cost me and how much does he/she earn?
Make sure you understand the process a visitor goes through, you will get something like this:
Is a home base for your business
A good website really is a home base for your business on the internet. I like to see my website as my virtual office building where it all happens. From my home base I do all my marketing actions and take care of my online positioning.
By constantly keeping my focus on 1 website I also take care of a constant growth of my business. This because the reputation of this website with Google is constantly growing but also because everything I add strengthens what was already there.
Ask yourself: are you as good as your last project or are you as good as the sum of everything you’ve put on the internet?
Accommodate a community and stimulate interaction
A good internet marketing strategy really has a clear focus on community building, otherwise you really miss out on an important aspect. Anyway, interaction on your website is already very good for your score in Google but it also creates a “we” feeling among your visitors.
There is nothing more powerful than a strong community within your supporters. A group of people with a shared interest to whom you as an entrepreneur can get your message across, the community then takes care of the extensive dissemination of that message.
What you really want with your website is that it will be seen as an interactive portal. A meeting place for your supporters to communicate with each other.
Stimulates influences from Social Media
A good site not only makes grateful use of social media influences but also stimulates them. By asking your reader in a blog post if he or she wants to like your message, you usually get twice as much result compared to when you wouldn’t ask…
Make sure your readers see your social media buttons clearly but also that they feel the urge to use them. Many readers don’t immediately think of this when they have read a good piece of you. Likes, and Tweets also have a positive influence on your ranking in Google.
Is an (Social) Authority
A good website radiates authority and not only authority by look and feel, also by the social aspect. One of the first things you often see when you visit website is the Facebook Fanpage box.
This gives the site a certain authority and immediately a piece of “social proof”. Especially when you see one of your own facebook friends in my fan list it will influence your opinion about my website. A lot of tweets and likes with your blog posts also take you to a higher level.
By the way, don’t go along with the latest “hype” on the internet to buy likes, this has nothing to do with transparent business and will damage you in the long run in Google and Facebook.
Has a high stickratio and nice usability
Attracting a lot of visitors is fantastic, but it’s no good if those visitors leave immediately. So make sure that your website keeps visitors. I sometimes call this the “stickratio”, or: how long do people stick with you. A good website has a clear, well-organized structure that provides a great user experience. People need to be able to stay on your site for a while without high concentration.
People are often annoyed:
- Many dark colors
- Unreadable texts (colour and font)
- Moving parts
- Self starting videos and audio
- Background music
- Pop-up windows
- Long search for certain parts/information
Is the ultimate employee
A good website can mean a lot to you as a “digital employee”, just think about this:
- Site provides answers to questions (blog, knowledge base, FAQ, search function)
- Site has an inspiring effect (internal links, videos)
- Site is a sales representative with a tested story (sales page, split tests, AIDA Model)
- Site never gets tired
- Site never has a bad day
- Site does not go on holiday, weekend or day off
- Site facilitates the community
- Site stimulates interaction
- Site shows people the right way
- Site converts User Generated Content into value (comments contribute to SEO)
Saves you a lot of time. (DRY Principle)
An effective and conveniently arranged website ensures that you can apply the DRY Principle: Don’t Repeat Yourself…
Also in this article you will see several clickable words passing by to articles I posted earlier, that saves me a lot of typing and explaining today. This linking is all automatic. In addition, I have filled a Knowledge Base with all the basic knowledge you (in my opinion) should have about internet marketing. This saves me a lot of answering customer service/emails.
Also all formatting, functionalities, SEO aspects and so on are set from above so I only have to paste bare text into the site. It is automatically formatted and provided with all the necessary functionality around it. When I make a change in layout or functionality, it is automatically applied to the entire site
Is built for the long term
People are naturally focused on short-term results and these are also important. However, when it comes to websites, you have to focus on a long-term strategy in order to acquire and maintain a strong position in Google.
I think you are by far the best off when you set up a website/business that can last a long time and keeps on growing. You really build a foundation for your business that you can always fall back on.