How would you improve my auto repair shop website?
My father and I have an auto repair shop in Plainfield, IL. Our website is www.LastChanceAutoRepairs.com. I've spent a lot of time creating it. It is a never-ending, very addictive, ever-growing job that I love to do. What can I do to make it better? Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.
Hi Corry, I might not be the biggest expert in online web building but I am in the same boat as you. I help run a small auto body shop with my dad and have been tasked with building our website. You can check out my work if that would help, you can find us at Parker hail repair. The biggest thing that has helped my business show up on google is reaching out to auto industry bloggers and having them post articles for you, the only catch with this is it spreads the awareness of your base url and not your homepage.
Utilize the crap out of Google My Business. Post to Google often. Create a long description with lots of keywords for services you perform. Fill out the services section, etc.
Also make sure that your name, phone number, and address match perfectly everywhere that your business is listed. Yext provides a listing management service but it is automated and basic. I like using it for the little directories and manually edit the big ones like Google, Bing, and Yelp.
Also lots of reviews help!
The "Click for Directions" image of the map in the middle goes to Google maps, taking the user off of your website. I would recommend using Google Maps embedded code to users to stay on your website when clicking on the map or getting more info on your locations.
I have checked your website and I found some points which will help you. Check the following points:
1. As a I checked, your mobile website speed is 39%. it is very slow the speed should be above 80%. You should work on it.
2. Place the social media button on your website. They help in user engagement.
3. Prepare attractive logo.
4. Change the design of your website, choose some attractive design.
5. Keep the meta tags not more than 60 characters.
For the logo, you can contact: https://www.linkedin.com/in/divya-goel-aa8932115/
As you have discovered, supporting a website and continuous improvement efforts are an "ever-growing job" and in fact, never-ending. Kudos to you for all of the hard work, and even more for seeking suggestions for improvement from others.
Rina, Aamina, Michelle, Jeff, Bennett, and Patrick all made excellent points for consideration. To not re-hash their thoughts too much, the following are some more basic "block and tackling" considerations.
1. Regularly scan for broken (or not performing links) and resolve them. Examples are:
a. In https://www.lastchanceautorepairs.com/auto-body-shop-plainfield-naperville-bolingbrook-il/ there is a broken link https://www.recommendedcompany.com/b/81ys.gif, likely resulting from a certificate issue on the target domain.
b. In https://www.lastchanceautorepairs.com/hyundai-clutch-replacement-week-in-plainfield-il/ there is a broken link http://lastchanceautotransmissionrepair.com/, likely resulting from the absence of https://www in the URL.
c. In https://www.lastchanceautorepairs.com/ there is a broken link https://www.hubgarage.com/mygarage/LastChance, resulting from a 404 not found error.
2. Review potential browser compatibility issues, such as:
a. Internet Explorer, Chrome, and Firefox display a security warning when a secure https: web page includes http//: content. In IE8 and Firefox 23 onwards, the default option is not to display the http:// content. To fix this, use relative URL paths ../images/file.png, or full URL paths /images/file.png; or absolute https URLs https://example.com/images/file.png. An example is https://www.lastchanceautorepairs.com/auto-repair-services/ (line 747). Also, consider replacing flash multimedia content with MP4 (recommended).
b. Older browsers do not support SVG images (e.g., Android 2 or earlier). An example is on https://www.lastchanceautorepairs.com/ (line 2509).
3. Search engine requirements:
a. Do not stuff alt text with keywords that users are unlikely to view. Doing so may result in search engine penalties. Example: https://www.lastchanceautorepairs.com/auto-air-conditioning-repair-plainfield-il/ (line 1271)
b. Google and Bing recommend avoiding broken links. Example: https://www.lastchanceautorepairs.com/brake-repair-naperville-il/ reference https://www.lastchanceautorepairs.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/Performance-Brake-Repairs-In-Naperville.jpg (line 771).
c. Bing recommends that each page should not have more than one h1 reference element, e.g., https://www.lastchanceautorepairs.com/auto-battery-replacement/ (line 773, 774).
d. Bing webmaster guidelines recommend that each page has one h1 element. An example with the h1 missing is https://www.lastchanceautorepairs.com/category/blog (line 74).
e. Strongly suggest that you consider using the Yoast WordPress SEO tools if you have not already.
- W3C HTML/XHTML Validation
- W3C CSS Validation
b. In many cases, these best practices revolve around keeping up to date with coding standards and replacing obsolete features as needed. Example: The align attribute on the p element is obsolete. Use CSS instead. When using WordPress, make sure you're plug-ins are up to date and if one doesn't get the desired results, switch to a more technically up to date plug-in.
a. Review accessibility features against the standards of WCAG 2.0 and Section 508.
b. Non-compliance can result in issues for older users, people with disabilities, or accessibility needs. Human testing, along with input from automated tools needs to be used to evaluate Accessibility.
c. People with these kinds of requirements may not need your site's services :). That said, Accessibility is a pretty big deal, especially particularly with government users and web sites.
6. Regularly review web site performance. There are many complexities to evaluating performance and excellent resources out there available at little or no charge. A tool that we like is https://www.webpagetest.org. Some hosting providers are better than others, especially for optimized WordPress sites.
I'm happy to share the full report of results that were generated using the tools my company utilizes to review such matters (no charge). Just message me with your email address.
Hope this helps.
If you are good at visuals - create visuals include videos and promote them on your social media, from where you can drive traffic back to your website.
Also, there are sites, where you can share your visuals.
Here are the top ten sites where you can submit your infographics:
3. Infographic Reviews
5. Infographic Bee
6. Flowing Data
8. Infographics Showcase
10. Fast Company
Hope this helps,
Great to know you love what you do. Passion is the key to success. I visited your website and here are a few recommendations. Hope you find them useful.
UPGRADE THE OVERALL LOOK OF THE DESIGN
These days, looks matter. Focus on changing the aesthetics of your website design to match the contemporary trends or the current visual taste of your target market. Give the web design a modern and minimal execution so that the main content is not lost underneath. Also, it’ll help to remove the background texture from your website.
IMPROVE THE STRUCTURE OF YOUR CONTENT
If you are pleased with the existing content then spend time curating it a little better. Although I will advise you proofread all the text to make sure there are no basic errors.
- Shift the ‘about us’ write-up to another web page by linking it on the top navigation menu bar with a section of its own.
- Select better and bigger images to accompany your text. Try to humanize some of the images by using ones that include people.
- Align the text in a way that it looks visually pleasing. You could also create a pattern for alignment of each text for the sub-headings or sub-sections. For example, left-align one paragraph and then right-align the other and so on.
- Highlight the following questions either by making them bold or using them as a sub-title in a separate line from the other text.
“Is it time to change your brakes?”
“Need an engine repair near you?”
“Need a transmission repair?”
“Having suspension problems?”
“Need a towing or roadside assistance service?”
These are your catch-phrases so don’t bury them in the long text. Bring them out to the front.
ADD A SLIDE SHOW ON YOUR HOMEPAGE
You need to have two slideshows or carousel on the main page:
1) The top of the home page can have two to four feature images with your tagline and a call-to-action button.
2) The recommendations can be displayed in a carousel form to save space and make the design look clean and organized.
ADD VISUAL ELEMENTS FOR INTEREST
Videos are the trend these days and they are here to stay. Instead of writing about “Years Of Auto Service History You Can Trust”, turn it into a video. If that is challenging for you then make an infographic for this content or a better yet turn the different milestones into separate images.
DESIGN A LOGO FOR YOUR BUSINESS
A custom logo design will look nicer on your website instead of just your name. You can either make the logo yourself or you can hire someone to make it for you. The logo can then be used on all the marketing activities that you do.
I saw there is a lot of PBN backlinks and you're getting down.
You have to disavow all those low-quality PBN backlinks and create authenticating backlinks.
And some other basic tasks.
Great website! I can see many hours have gone into making it.
I may be mistaken (sorry) but there seems to be an obvious one - a useful and often included page that I can't see.
A simple, obvious and advantages page that your site is missing, is an "About Us" page.
An about us page gives your potential customer better insight into what your business is and who the real people are within that they will likely be dealing with.
It can be a valuable page to allow them to know you before they pick up the phone. While this information is spread throughout the site, a link to it will go well near your call to action phone number top-right. For your type of business, you will do well to have a google map location in that About Us page. I'd also put street photos so they recognize it when driving by. Information about the family behind the family business (eg. what role they play in the business) will help them to know you and feel like they trust you.
You can simply call it "About" in your menu, so it doesn't take up more space than necessary, but then title it "About Us" on the page itself.
It is another place to explain the locations you serve.
I wanted to keep this answer simple and only give 1 tip. However, there is another I must suggest. Your call to action top-right is an image of what looks a little like a business card. It has many small text details.
I'd remove all the small text in that image. It will be hard to see for some people. It might confuse people as well. Being an image it (the small text) gives no more SEO value than the label of the image itself.
If you click the image it just shows the image. You can do better than that. For example, you can take them to your new About Us page for example, by including a hyperlink in the image details.
Even better - I'd make the phone number clickable so that when someone looks you up on their mobile phone they can click/tap on the number which starts the phone call. This is a much faster route for them to call you. Make it as easy as possible for them.
I'd also suggest removing the payment options from the image also. It is useful to explain somewhere on your site what payment methods you accept. But I'd suggest that reminding them of hitting their wallet at the same time you are trying to get them to call you is a conflicting idea. If anything, at this point you want to be giving them the confidence they will get what they need by calling. Car fixed. Car serviced. Noise removed. Whatever is common. How about something more like the following? "It'll drive like new -Call now!"
All those payment option images reminded me of one of those sites where you pay for something online, like an e-course. This is not what you want at this point on your site. Don't distract people from calling you!
Good question! This is one we hear a lot when talking to small business owners. I'll share a few quick tips.
1. I'd start by reading two pieces on Business News Daily, which is Business.com's sister site.
10 Tips for Building an Effective Business Website - https://www.businessnewsdaily.com/9811-effective-business-website-tips.html
5 Steps to Designing an Effective Business Website - https://www.businessnewsdaily.com/2046-web-design-data.html
These articles will give you a quick run through of things a good business website should include. They're a good starting point in the process of updating the website.
2. I might try to make the website simpler in a few areas. There's a lot of text on the home page and many of the other pages have a good deal of text as well. Being simple and concise is normally the best way to go because it will help your customers quickly find the information they're looking for. Normally, users aren't looking to spend too long on a website.
I also think it might be beneficial to group some of the services your shop offers. The sheer volume of options under the "services" tab might overwhelm someone who isn't familiar with auto repair.
3. Ask your customers what they think. Judging from the reviews of your customers, you have a loyal group of supporters. It would be a good idea to ask your customers if they'd be willing to use your website for 5-10 minutes and then fill out a survey about the site. It's hard to make helpful changes to your website if you aren't sure what your customers think of the site. Asking for feedback from your customers will give you better guidance about how to make it better. Given the loyalty of your customers, I think many people would be willing to fill out a survey to help out.
4. There are also SEO elements such as using page titles, meta descriptions, etc. that come into play when building a website. Here's a link to our most recent article on SEO best practices: https://www.business.com/articles/top-seo-tips-smb-authority/.
Hope this helps!
The pictures are pretty nice. Personally, I would not center the text, but align it to the right, it is too hard to read.
You might want to consider cutting down on the text, it's too much to read for the average customer.
Keep up the good work!
Regards from Switzerland
Patrick Della Santa
CEO Daily Flowers