Optimizing even a relatively small website takes a lot of work, time, and attention to detail. So you can imagine how much harder it is to do the same thing for the world’s largest websites.
I’m talking about enterprise-level companies whose websites have hundreds or even thousands of web pages. Think of large eCommerce sites with many individual product pages, or news sites with a massive back catalog of blogs, interviews, press releases, and more.
Things get even more complicated when you take into account the growing importance of multimedia in content marketing, including such things as video, audio streams, infographics, picture galleries, and the like.
With so much content to sift through, it can be a challenge for any business to manage it all, no matter how big. Worse, it can be an even bigger challenge for users and search crawlers to sift through.
A poorly optimized website has more drawbacks than benefits, even at the enterprise level. A poorly optimized website can lead to high bounce rates, losing you millions in potential revenues. Worst of all, a poorly optimized website can hurt your search and authority rankings, meaning that users don’t even have a chance to bounce off your site, because they can’t find it to begin with!
The three main pillars of website optimization are:
Below, we’ll explain the ins and outs of how to optimize a website at the enterprise level. All businesses, however, should take note, as a lot of these tips can be useful for smaller websites as well. At the end of the day, whether your site has five million pages or just five, proper optimization is the key to successful conversion.
Page Speed Optimization
We all know the feeling. You click on a link expecting to be whisked away to a fast-loading website, only to feel frustration and boredom as a poorly optimized page slowly and laboriously comes into view.
For many users, that’s enough to send them packing. It’s estimated that roughly half of all users consider page speed—that is, how long it takes for a page to load all its content—as a major factor in their website loyalty. What’s more, nearly 80 percent of people surveyed said they won’t return to a site with slow page speed at all.
On top of that, Google has acknowledged that its algorithm takes page speed into account when ranking webpages. Suffice to say, page speed optimization is a critical part of successfully turning visitors into customers.
Bigger Isn’t Always Better
So what causes a page to load slowly? Among the biggest culprits when it comes to hobbling page speed are uncompressed image and video files.
Keep in mind that “resizing” and “compressing” are not the same thing; even photos on your site that have been properly resized may be unnecessarily large in terms of file size.
Compressing picture and video files usually won’t diminish image quality—unless you really overdo it—and it has the added benefit of making it easier for your website to quickly load them onto a page.
For pictures, tools like Gzip, Photoshop, and Compressor.io are perfect. For videos, try converting files to VLC format, or use a free online tool like Video Smaller.
Cash In on Browser Caching
You may not realize this, but you can actually control which parts of your page a browser can cache, as well as how long those elements should stay cached, which is useful depending on how often you update your website design.
Of course, making full use of a site’s cache customization options can be tricky, even for professional webmasters. Fortunately, there are a number of plugins and software tools that help make the process easier, such as W3 Total Cache and the aforementioned Gzip..
More Page Speed Optimization Tips
- – Decrease the number of page redirects
- – Fix server-response bottlenecks, such as slow routing or insufficient memory
- – Upgrade to a high-performance, dedicating web hosting platform
User Experience Optimization
Once you’ve gotten your page speed fast enough that users actually want to visit your website, it doesn’t mean your work is done. Don’t underestimate the importance of user experience in web design; a bad UX can lose you potential customers just as easily as slow page speed.
Remember: the people browsing your website are the same ones you want to convert to sales, subscriptions, or whatever other forms of monetization your company uses. Customer comfort and convenience should be a top priority. If navigating your website is difficult or frustrating, then they simply won’t bother. They’ll just go to one of your competitor’s websites instead.
So, how do you optimize a website to provide the best possible user experience?
KISS Bad Design Goodbye
Have you ever heard of the design acronym KISS? It stands for “keep it simple, stupid,” and it’s been utilized by everyone from the US Navy to animated filmmakers to, yes, webmasters.
Sometimes, when inexperienced page designers discover the benefits of adding multimedia to a site, they go overboard, trying to throw every trick they have at users. The results are often pages that are not only slow, but confusing.
Embrace the minimalism of visual simplicity. This doesn’t mean your site has to be boring or indistinguishable from a competitor’s, but it should be clean, uncluttered, and intuitive. Avoid navigation bars with too many menus, sub-menus, and sub-sub-menus.
Consider, also, the search intent of your users. What brought them to your website? What are they looking for? What are your most important pages, products, or services? These are the things that should be most prominent and easily accessible on your site.
Get Users Engaged with Interactivity
What is it that separates good websites from great websites? What keeps users invested and engaged? How do you keep people from bouncing off your site and heading somewhere else?
A great answer to all these questions is interactivity.
Interactivity is the difference between a website that users passively scroll through and one they actively use. Interactive elements like quizzes, calculators, videos, and audio files don’t just give visitors more content; they give them more value.
Strategically employing these kinds of interactive features helps distinguish your website, as well as turning it into a problem-solving tool. This builds a stronger relationship between you and your customer base, which helps inspire brand loyalty and increase conversions.
More User Experience Optimization Tips
-Avoid eye-straining color-clash
-Always fix bugs, glitches, and 404 errors ASAP
-Accommodate users with physical and cognitive impairments
-Make it easy for users to contact your support staff
-Ensure your website is mobile-friendly
Search Engine Optimization
When most people talk about “optimizing websites,” they’re usually first and foremost talking about search engine optimization, or SEO.
Fun fact: the vast majority of users, when searching for something on Google or Bing, don’t explore past the first page of results. That means that if your website isn’t on the first page of results, then fewer users are likely to even know you exist. That’s just as true for big, enterprise-level businesses as it is for small, local ones.
It’s essential, then, to understand how best to leverage enterprise SEO solutions to improve your website’s search ranking. All the website optimization tips outlined above can only help so much if your pages aren’t optimized in a way that consistently drives traffic to your site.
Unlock the Power of Keywords
The first things a company should know when learning how to optimize a website for SEO are which keywords they currently rank for or could rank for with a little bit of work.
Keywords are basically user search queries, such as “best laptop brand” or “business card printing services.” Knowing which keywords to target requires knowing your users’ search intent. This could mean using a tool like Semrush Keyword Magic or it could mean studying the queries that bring users to your site now, or to your competitor’s sites.
Once you know the keywords you should be targeting, you can begin integrating those terms into your site content. Different pages can rank for different keywords, which means you can target a wide range of user types by crafting unique pieces of content that meet those users’ needs.
And speaking of content…
Content is (Still) King
You’ve heard it before, but you’ll hear it again because it’s true: content is still king when it comes to SEO. Search engines like Google and Bing are getting better at mimicking the usage habits of real human beings, which is why higher-quality content always rises to the top.
Creating useful, natural, and engaging content should always be the main goal of SEO optimization. Keywords, backlinks, interlinks, and other SEO strategies are useful, but they don’t add up to much if sub-par content ends up resulting in a high bounce rate.
Furthermore, search engines aren’t stupid. They can tell the difference between natural and unnatural links and keywords, so don’t try to game the system. The path to SEO success doesn’t have shortcuts. To increase your ranking, you have to provide users with the content they want and need. It’s just that simple, and it’s just that hard.
More Search Engine Optimization Tips
-Get backlinks from websites with high authority scores
-Produce “evergreen” content that won’t become dated over time
-Keep your URLs short but descriptive
-Use both internal and external links with appropriate anchor text
-Conduct regular site audits
LSEO Offers Enterprise-Level Website Optimization Services
Big businesses require big websites, and big websites require big fixes to make sure they’re optimized to provide fast page speed, a convenient user experience, and effective SEO.
The best way to ensure that your enterprise website is fully optimized is to consult the experts. At LSEO, website optimization isn’t just our business; it’s our passion.
We want to help you grow your businesses to even bigger and better heights. If you need professional help with enterprise-level website optimization, contact LSEO today. We’re happy to put our knowledge, experience, and resources to work for you!