Understanding how your website is performing against your stated goals and objectives, as well as the competition, is essential to maximize the site's potential.
The problem for those who are not experts in this domain is the sheer amount of detail involved in a website. Once you construct the landing page, there is the matter of the tab formulation, the inclusion of multimedia, article creation, social media inclusion and a variety of other requirements that bump up the site on a Google listing. All of this can be manufactured and published onto the web without discovering how any of it is performing, why it is lagging behind other companies within that same niche and what can be done to catch up.
It can be stressful trying to contemplate all of this in one hit, but there are applications available to ease this process. Here are seven of the best.
1. Google Analytics
With its access to the biggest search engine on the planet, it is almost a dereliction of duty not to take advantage of Google Analytics. This beauty can make the most complex data look relatively simple, allowing you to find out click rates on pages, advertisements and tabs, all while it offers up-to-the-minute statistics on the habits of visitors from local, regional and international domains.
The greatest asset of Google Analytics is that it will only publish what you need to know or are capable of knowing, in reports that come down to the finest of details. It can be as complex and robust as your business needs it to be.
2. Found SEO Tool
The Found SEO Tool understands that users might not be experts in this particular field and offers a simplified color scheme to clarify performance. From errors (pink) to warnings (yellow) to successes (green), this English-based marketing tool allows anyone to insert their URL into the system and discover immediately how they are performing. It identifies content issues that revolve around metadata and keywords, technical areas including site maps, and a comprehensive external link analysis based on qualitative and quantitative research.
There are plenty of tools in the World Wide Web that will inform you on what has gone wrong and what might go wrong, but few give advice on how you should go about fixing it. SEOptimer is a free tool to audit the entire operation by isolating problem areas that require urgent attention, then recommending steps you can take to help with SEO.
A simple download through Google Chrome can see the SEOptimer work as an extension during regular web browsing activity. If these issues need to be investigated and presented, the application offers a comprehensive PDF report detailing what it has identified and enacted.
Ever wondered why that fantastic website you installed last month does not come across as a brilliant presentation on a mobile or tablet? There will be a reason behind that, and if you use BrowserStack to test compatibility across platforms, it will be easier to know where the problem lies and how best to solve it. This cloud-based company located in India offers free trials for its web-based browser testing software, allowing you to see if your site renders correctly across all types of domains that your customers will be using daily.
5. 4Q by iPerceptions
While it is important to have an application dig down into the details and discover your visitors' habits with clicks and site navigation, sometimes it is best to head straight to the source and ask them yourself. This is where the free survey application 4Q by iPerceptions can be incredibly helpful. Most site visitors probably won't spare the time to engage with a survey, but those who do will offer genuine tangible feedback that can help with the overall site construction.
Without spending a cent, you can find out the following data:
- Who are your customers?
- Where are they finding you?
- Are they satisfied with the site?
- What should you include or exclude to make it run better?
6. Marketing Grader
Marketing Grader is an application founded by HubSpot that goes into incredible detail about your website performance. None of the site data is beyond the range of Marketing Grader, which ventures into the articles and blogs, keywords, links, lead generation, SEO, mobile and tablet performance, and even social media strategy and integration. If you simply insert the page URL with the correct email address, this web-based program will publish reports on page size capability, page requests, page speed, browser caching, compression, security and more.
7. Crazy Egg
Crazy Egg is not a free application, ranging in price from $9 to $99 per month depending on what features you need. It's priced this way because it devises a heat map that informs you how your website is performing from a usability standpoint. The tracking of clicks will detail where the visitors are heading and what they are engaged with, offering the important information in a user-friendly domain. In case Crazy Egg is too much of an investment to begin with, the company provides a 30-day money-back guarantee so you can opt out within the first month.
New and emerging website tools are popping up every week. To stay on top of your website performance, scour the internet to see what your peers are using to stay abreast of trends and tricks. What might be applicable today could become irrelevant in the space of a few months, but running your program through these automated systems will give you a greater understanding of where the site sits and how it needs to improve.