Installing WordPress is only the beginning of all of the fun and adventure in the world of the virtual reality. Using WordPress can’t guarantee you a spectacular success, although it can bring you a bit closer to one. What can you do to generate more valuable traffic and to make your WordPress website look more attractive to an end user? This is what we will cover in our article.
What is WordPress?
WordPress is one of the most intuitive tools and CMS systems available for website and content management. It allows users to create a website with as little effort as necessary whilst being loaded with features and highly intuitive for both admins and users.
According to W3Techs statistics from February 2016, WordPress is used by 58.7% of the total websites using CMS and as many as 27.5% from the top 10 million websites. Impressive, isn’t it?
Ease of use, intuitive design and many useful features are causing increasingly more businesses and brands to adopt WordPress and apply it to their marketing and content activities strategy. However, for results, you need to wait…and continue working on it. Today, we want to introduce you to a list of good and not-so-good practices for WordPress as well as provide you with some hints to make your website work better.
Good practices: some tips & tricks for using WordPress website and making it work smoothly.
Keep an eye on a website optimization.
Sometimes the easiest things seem to be the most difficult ones. Taking care of your website’s design or strategy can be so time-killing and full of effort that optimization of these activities seems to be an unnecessary distraction or is regarded as low priority. It’s a common mistake that may cost you and your brand a lot.
Even if your WordPress website seems the most functional one in the world to you, a lack of optimization can kill your statistics, user experience and design. Check your stats regularly in Google Analytics and try to find troublesome elements of your communication and website. You can use heat maps as well. Problems may lie in things you wouldn’t have even thought of if not for optimization.
Takeaway: Get familiar with Google Analytics if you care about your results. And we suppose that if you read this article you must care!
Do your best to make your website as attractive as possible for both your users and for Google. Use keywords, optimize headlines, check links and take care of editable elements.
Extension: Install Yoast SEO for optimizing on-page SEO. You may get addicted to this extension that shows you possible areas of improvement, as well as those that are already sufficiently optimized. Using Yoast SEO is intuitive even for those who are not WordPress-literate.
In your posts use .jpg format images. Other pictures connected to your WordPress website should preferably be in .png format. Use some stock photos, but try not to copy-paste and repeatedly use the same graphics, especially if they are already popular on the Internet. The desirable situation is to only use dedicated graphics prepared for your brand – it positively affects your brand’s recognition.
Extension: Use WP Smush.it to decrease the size of your image files by compression, without reducing the dimensions. Your WordPress will “thank you” for sure!
Trust social media promotion.
Your WordPress website shouldn’t be left alone. Make the most of social media opportunities to advertise and promote your page and content with some thoughtful posts. You can also decide on cross-promotion with your business partners to include some links to your website and references to your brand. Proper promotion can’t really hurt.
Extensions are really ok.
Extensions can be a blessing or a curse. The right choice shouldn’t look like shopping in a big market and putting absolutely everything into your basket, including things you don’t need or you didn’t plan to own. Extensions save time, money and nerves but only when they are selected carefully and well-thought-out.
Extension: Beacon. Thanks to this, you’ll create some e-books out of content you already have in just a few minutes, without the help of an IT or graphics department. And you can redistribute e-books for your current and potential customers via Landingi.com.
User comes first.
Your feelings about the website are important, but should be based on two factors: statistics and user experience. The user is the most important person for your brand, so try to make their interaction with the brand simple and friendly. Take care of their opinion and feedback especially if they are not the first person to give a particular opinion.
Layout and navigation attract.
The layout and ease of navigation of your website and posts are really important for their speed, interface and impression. A simple, readable and navigable menu consisting of appropriate elements, attractive and complex posts can make users spend time on and revisit your website more willingly and regularly.
Extension: Scroll to Top. Users can return to the top of the website in one click. It is particularly useful for longer posts or blog posts.
Bad practices: what to avoid in WordPress and possible mistakes when building a website.
The variety of themes for WordPress website is almost never-ending. If you think you found the perfect one, take two things into consideration. Firstly, get rid of the theme you are replacing as well as even older ones you have in your account. Secondly, think twice if it’s the right choice for how it will affect the loading speed of your page and how it looks on mobile devices. This kind of verification will help you make the right decision.
Lack of promotion
Maybe your WordPress website is very attractive and provides a lot of added value to your potential audience, but…no one knows about it and no one pays a visit. Have you already tested all of the possible promotion channels and made some conclusions? Thanks to social media, remarketing became a pleasure.
Tool: Campaign URL Builder – mark your links and platforms, it will allow you to analyze the traffic precisely in Google Analytics. Also, you can find out if your marketing efforts are going well and delivering desirable results.
Too many extensions or widgets
Even inactive widgets are a massive load for servers. Use tools that will help your website speed on a regular basis. Deleting some unuseful extensions is necessary and pleasant. The same goes for widgets – they may do more harm than good. Have no mercy!
Extension: P3 (Plugin Performance Profiler). Out of sight, out of mind… and out of WordPress, too. Take a look at what extensions are the worst enemies of your server and wave them “goodbye”. The results may really surprise you!
No SSL certificate
A lack of SSL certificate may mean that Google will not only put your website lower in ranks than your competitors who already have this certificate, but may even regard it as a dangerous site and block it. Increased bounce rate is not something you’ve been always dreaming of, right?
No adjusting for mobile devices
Was 2016 the year of mobile? Well, this is the year when the number of requests from mobile devices was higher than from desktop. Your website has to be ready for it: full RWD (Responsive Web Design) makes your mobile audience more likely to interact and familiarize with your page. A lack of optimization may mean rejecting your website…and finding competitors’ ones.
Tool: Google’s Mobile Friendly. It will quickly and simply show some areas for optimization and improvement and judge if the website is adjusted to mobile devices.
The nightmare of many, many pages. There is nothing more off-putting than being able to reach the page you’re looking for. A 404 Page doesn’t really appeal to users and they are more likely to leave such a website. Regularly check your links and backlinks, swap those that are not active any longer with new ones, don’t be scared of it!
Extension: Broken Link Checker. It shows inactive and broken links on your website. It takes a lot of space on the server so once you have used it, uninstall it, and only reinstall it when you’re going to need it again.
WordPress is an ocean of almost never ending opportunities. But you can swim in the ocean…or sink and get lost. We obviously wish you the first option.
Soon you will say “hello” to our great extension for WordPress website. What we can guarantee is… love from the first click. Stay tuned!