Not all websites are created equal.
For every great site, there are scores upon scores of downright awful ones. Websites whose creators either don’t understand the basics of search engine optimization (SEO) and content marketing or simply don’t care. Today, we’re going to try something a little different.
We’re going to go over some characteristics that most of these low-grade sites share in common, and how you can avoid being lumped in with them yourself.
Your Content Is Bad
Content is king, and if the king is incompetent, everything else comes crashing down.
Maybe you’ve spun all the content in your blog from other sources. Maybe there’s a ton of duplicate content within your own site; multiple pages with the same copy that serve no real purpose. Either way, if your content isn’t unique and compelling, Google will consider your website to be of middling quality, at best.
Plagiarism and content duplication aren’t the only ways you can fail in terms of content creation, mind you. Your website might have a surplus of thin content, low-value stuff that serves little purpose and offers little value to the audience. Or worse still, the content on your page might be misleading, tricking users into clicking and not actually providing what they’re looking for.
There Are Performance Issues
Slow load times. Advertisements that interrupt the content. Rich media that causes a user’s device to slow to a crawl.
Poor website performance is one of the surest ways to not only drive users away from your site but also to get yourself penalized by Google. It’s common knowledge at this point that page speed is a factor in determining a page’s rank. As such, you need to make sure you’re using a good host, with a decent content delivery network, and that you’ve done everything you can to optimize every last corner of your website.
You Don’t Provide Enough Information
The general rule for any business website is that there should be NAP (Name, Address, Phone Number) information on every single page. A customer visiting your site should, at a glance, be able to figure out both how to contact you and who you are. A site that doesn’t offer this information is often treated as low quality by Google.
People need to know who you are. How to contact you. How to reach out to customer support about your products and services. Who created the content on your site.
We’ve all heard the stories of the early days of SEO. It was the wild west, with keyword stuffers, link farms, and black hat SEO experts dominating the rankings. Those days are long behind us, but for some reason, there are still many webmasters who believe we’re still living in that dark era.
Overbearing advertisements, frequently laden with malware and spyware. Countless spammy links as far as the eye can see. Bots pasting links to the website wherever they can, shoving into as many faces as possible.
These are the hallmarks of a spammer, and the surest sign that a website isn’t worth visiting.
Your Reputation Is In The Toilet
Word travels fast on the web. If your brand has recently been involved in any major scandals or you’ve developed a reputation for poor quality or service, that will eventually come back to bite you. At that point, your website’s quality is going to suffer no matter how much work you put into it.
It’s important that you maintain positive relations with your customers. That you do everything in your power to address negative reviews and customer complaints. And that you pay attention to what people are saying in order to respond effectively.
Quality is Key
Reputation management, quality content, thorough information, respect for your audience, and seamless performance. These are the characteristics you need to pursue in order to ensure your website doesn’t fall down the pit of poor quality. Fortunately, none of them are particularly difficult to accomplish — you really just have to be willing to put in the work.