For all the attention paid to things like social activity and search-optimized blog posts, it’s easy to forget that the static pages on your website – like the home page, about page, and product pages – still have to do a lot of the heavy lifting when it comes to your Internet marketing plan. After all, it’s likely new and potential customers will view these a lot more frequently than they will your ongoing posts, which means they could make or break the profitability of your website.
But how do you know if your static pages are well written and designed? Here are four easy criteria you can use to judge their quality and effectiveness:
1. Is it easy to find? This might seem like a no-brainer, but no one can react to a page on your website if they can’t find it. Internal linking and menu structure are important here, but so are the appropriate search engine keywords. You can’t control the flow of traffic within your website itself, so things like clear navigation and a prominent “search” box can go a long way toward helping visitors find what they’re looking for.
2. Is it easy to scan and read? People love images, headlines, subheads, and lots of white space on a web page. What they hate are long blocks of text, confusing design elements, and pages that seem complicated. The simplicity of your page touches on both the layout and the copywriting, but the two elements should work together to create an impression that your content is easy to scan and understand.
3. Does it have a specific point and audience? Every web page you have should be tied to a specific audience (that is, what kind of viewer you’re hoping to attract to the page) and a point or purpose. The old rule of thumb to “keep to one idea or topic per page” still applies. You’re much better off having a two- or three-tiered navigation structure with simple, easy-to-understand pages than you are cramming multiple thoughts into a single longer section.
4. Is there a clear call to action? Make it as easy as possible for visitors to register for information, schedule appointments, make a purchase, or complete some other action when they reach the end of your web page. Having too many choices can confuse visitors, but there should be at least one or two options for them to continue and take the next step. That’s helpful for searchers who need answers, and the best way to get leads or customers from your pages.
Of course, when it comes to judging the pages on your website, nothing beats a thorough review of your web analytics to see how actual buyers are responding to them. Still, looking at these four questions should give you a quick sense of whether you’re moving in the right direction or not.