When a user visits your website for the first time, it’s more than just an opportunity for a lead. This is your chance to build and foster a strong personal relationship with the user. You need to encourage them to explore your site, nurture their interest in your site, and trust you.
As a user browses your website, it is critical that you continue to spark their interest. Provide compelling content that informs and intrigues them. Provoke them to engage with you and other pages on your site. This increases your pages per session.
Pages per session refers to the average number of pages on your website a user views in one session. To calculate pages per session, divide the number of page views by the total number of sessions. Google Analytics also allows you to track this metric per channel to see which pages attract and keep the most users.
This metric reflects more than you expect about your website. It reveals if your website is engaging and motivates users to stick around. More time exploring different pages on your site means more money for you.
Tactics to increase the number of pages per session include:
1. Improve Page Speed – Users are in a rush and expect your website to load quickly. They don’t want to wait to go from page to page.
40% of users will leave a site if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load on a desktop.
2. Remove Distractions – Your users are looking for specific information. Don’t disrupt their experience with popups. Use whitespace to your advantage for a sleek design.
Removing distractions can increase conversions up to 71% and increase page views.
3. Utilize Internal Linking – Internal links don’t just help with SEO. They help your reader. Strategic, carefully chosen internal links guide your users to new pages.
Using organic internal linking can increase your average page views per session 21%.
4. Create A Good User Experience – Make your website enjoyable and easy to use for visitors. Intuitive design and engaging elements draw users in.
Double your pages per session by improving the existing content on your website.
5. Suggest Similar Content – Compile related content in a sidebar or at the bottom of your page. This guides the user and helps them further explore your website.
Increase pages per session by telling your reader where to go next.
6. Provide Quality Content – Give users a reason to trust you. Provide content that answers their questions and prompts them to learn more from you.
Keep your reader’s attention with compelling and accessible content.
What Is Dwell Time & Why It’s Important to Improve
Achieving a high ranking on Google is worth celebrating, but your work doesn’t stop there. Yes, more people are likely to see you in the search results. However, just because they are more likely to visit your website doesn’t mean they are more likely to stay.
Convincing visitors to click your website is only the start. You have to prove to them that your website has exactly what they are searching for. Having good dwell time reveals if you are successful.
Dwell time is the amount of time a user spends on your website before exiting your website. It reveals if your site satisfies the needs of what users search for.
While Google hasn’t confirmed it is a ranking factor, clues indicate it impacts ranking. Dwell time reflects the credibility and effectiveness of your site.
Methods to improve dwell time include:
1. Optimize Mobile Site – Users will not stay on your website if it’s difficult to use or find information.
69% of smartphone users are more likely to buy on mobile sites that easily answer their questions.
2. Improve Site Speed – Users expect a page to load in seconds and may leave due to slow loading times.
47% of website visitors expect your website to load in less than two seconds.
3. Add Interactive Content – Interactive content like quizzes, calculators, interactive infographics, and more prompt users to take action.
88% of marketers found interactive elements helped brands stand apart from competitors.
91% of B2B buyers reported a preference for interactive content rather than static content.
4. Embed Videos – Use video wisely to inform visitors. Auto-roll videos turn off users, but self-play embedded videos entice them.
80% of marketers reported embedding videos increased dwell time.
5. Create Good Content – Easy-to-read content helps readers find what they are looking for.
Break up your content into smaller sections to guide the reader.
Increasing your site’s page views per visit can increase your brand recognition, trust,
exposure, SEO ranking, and will likely lead to more conversions. There are several strategies for getting users to stick around and visit more pages rather than bounce after reading only one page.
Read on to discover three simple yet effective solutions.
Use a Site Search Function Users don’t invest a significant amount of time trying to find what they’re looking for on your website. If they don’t see what they want right away, providing a search functionality on your website gives them a direct route to what they want.
Create Helpful Content Here’s the big change: today, great content is more about servicing than selling. People go to the web to solve a problem. Use your content to show your prospects how your product or service helps them solve their problems. Content that is more service and less selling is more likely to engage today’s consumers.
Promote Your Page from Within Help visitors find what they are looking for by including helpful and relevant internal links within your content to redirect users to other valuable pages on your site. Adding links to your own content gives your website more credibility, creates an easier and better user experience and encourages visitors to stay longer.
3 Ways to Increase the Time Visitors Spend on Your Site
The average user spends a measly 15 seconds on a website before leaving, typically because they didn’t find what they were expecting, or the site didn’t spark any interest.
If you keep visitors on your website longer, they are more likely to do what you want them to do, so you need to grab their attention and give them a reason to stick around.
Here are three ways to keep visitors on your website longer.
Use Simple Text Formatting: People don’t read giant paragraphs anymore. Think easy-to-read succinct bullet points with useful information in a legible font, especially on mobile devices. Use the 3-Sentence Rule: no paragraph should be longer than three sentences.
Use More Visual Content: 65% of people are visual learners. Use eye-catching images with quick load time, videos, and eye-popping graphics.
Fine Tune Your Marketing: Make sure you are attracting the right people. Your query data tells you what people want. Make sure your website delivers it.
Another free tool at your fingertips is Google Analytics. Pay attention to which of your marketing campaigns is working best. When you know where and how traffic is coming to your site, you’ll be better equipped to increase it.
3. Build Up Your Backlinks
With helpful content, people are more likely to share it, and other businesses are more likely to link to your website, you’ll get more visibility on the web that drives qualified traffic to your site. Google uses the quality of backlinks you have to help determine how it will rank your site. The higher your rankings, the more traffic you can get!
Your conversion rate reveals the number of people taking the desired action after visiting your website, such as purchasing your product or filling out a form to request a quote.
Improving your conversion rate means more people are completing the actions you want them to on your website, leading to growth in your business.
Here are four quick ways to improve your website conversion rate:
Include Testimonials: Using social proof such as testimonials, quotes, and company logos from satisfied customers creates trust.
Optimize Page Design: It’s best to make your page simple yet fun to look at, but not overly complicated and cluttered. Think, “engaging minimalism.”
Trim Down Form Fields: Your webpage visitors don’t want to fill out a lengthy form asking for every bit of information under the sun. Try shorter forms and watch your conversion rate soar.
Practice A/B Testing: Create two versions of your landing page, making slight changes to one and see which version performs better. Continue doing this, making different alterations, and you’ll end up with a fabulously-converting webpage.
Focusing on improving your conversion rate is the simplest, most direct path to more leads or sales. Get more from your existing website traffic before you commit to the time and expense of seeking additional website traffic.
When users leave your website without engaging, you get a high bounce rate and probably a lost chance to make a sale or get a lead. Lowering your bounce rate leads to a higher conversion rate, leading to more profits. Getting your users to engage with your website is easier than you think.
Here are three simple ways to get your users to engage and improve your bounce rate:
1. Make it Easy to Read
Use Bulleted Lists
Avoid Using Long Paragraphs
Use Easy-to-Understand Conversational Language
Use Clear, Readable Fonts, and Colors
2. Compel Them to Click
Have a Clear and Compelling Call-to-Action
Make Sure the Call-to-Action Button Is Easy to See
Offer Links to Pages with More Specific Content
3. Speed it Up
Use Images That Load Quickly
Use a Dedicated Virtual Server, Not a Cheap Shared-Hosting Site
Get the Mobile Version of Your Website to Load in Two Seconds
No matter the size of your business or what your marketing budget is, your business’ online presence needs to be strong. With all of the tools and software available to ensure your online success, maintaining an effective online status can become costly. However, you don’t have to break the bank to be successful in your online marketing efforts.
There are several valuable free online business tools available to you, designed to keep you connected with your customers. Here is a list of some of our favorites.
Google is big on providing great free online business tools, and with Google My Business, you can increase your online visibility easily. It is the most widely-used directory to find and contact local businesses.
When someone hops onto Google and searches for a business in their area, such as “dermatologist Orlando,” or “dermatologist near me,” Google displays Google My Business listings. Immediately, the searcher gets the most direct, relevant content they are seeking
The business’s name, phone number, address, and website link
The business’s location and map
The business’s operating hours
Reviews and ratings
Photos of the business
Because GMB listings appear above the standard search results, there is automatically more exposure to searchers. Not only that, but the search results may even list the GMB listing for your business as well as your webpage listed in the regular search results depending on your ranking. That’s two first page results, at no cost to you.
Navigating through your website’s Google Analytics can be a time-consuming and confusing practice considering the amount of data thrown at you, but it’s essential to understanding how your site is performing.
Smyletyics is a valuable free online business tool that turns your data into enjoyable photographs. This tool takes all of that useful data and turns it into something you’ll actually like to look at.
Not only is this service free, but it’s easy to use. Getting started is easy. All you have to do is:
Supply Your Google Analytics Email Address
Choose a Personalized Theme
Enjoy Your Bi-Monthly Emails with Your Data Turned into Photos
Your email will give you an easy-to-understand breakdown of how your website is performing as a marketing tool.
You need eye-catching graphics to grab customers’ attention, and it’s pretty easy to do with Canva. This free online business tool is a graphics editing software that helps create dazzling illustrations, graphs, social images, and graphics that will stop readers’ eyes in their tracks.
The easy-to-use drag and drop feature makes designing a breeze so you’ll not only get eye-popping results, but you’ll also save time. The impressive number of free resources to creating amazing internet artwork includes access to:
Lots of Beautiful Photo Filters
Hundreds of fonts
Thousands of Icons and Shapes
Millions of Stock Images, Photos, and Illustrations
It is a hidden gem in the free online business toolbox. Not only are you able to create stunning visual content for free quickly and easily, but you can kick up your design ability a few notches through some of their short online courses.
No matter what size business you have or how extensive your email list is, you want your emails to look professional and appealing. Although there are paid upgrades you may opt to invest in, the basic version of Mailchimp is an excellent free online business tool that will not only simplify the way you send emails, it is chock-full of features to make your emails look fantastic.
Mailchimp’s free version allows you to:
Email up to 2,000 contacts
Choose from 100 beautifully-designed templates
Send up to 10,000 emails
Integrate with over 200 apps
Keep tabs on your email campaigns through basic reports
Automate welcome, order notification, and abandoned cart emails
Do all this and more on their mobile app
But MailChimp doesn’t just help you with emails; you also get great social media marketing options, including Facebook and Instagram ads, social posting, pop-up forms, and more. This free online business tool includes access to their easy-to-use “Content Studio” that helps you create professional-looking marketing campaigns to use across all of your marketing campaigns.
Of course, you could upgrade to receive more marketing and email options, but the free version is loaded with enough features for almost any business.
When you better understand your customers, your marketing efforts go further, but getting inside their heads can be a difficult and timely process. One way to get to know how your customers think is through online surveys. The problem is, not too many people want to take the time to fill out a survey; people today are busy and impatient. That means your surveys need to be engaging and rewarding.
Feedier makes designing surveys simple with their clean, modern, and easy-to-use interface. When you create a survey, you can choose a game-like survey experience for your users, or go with a more professional option. In either case, Feedier allows you to create exciting-looking surveys to entice users into engaging.
This free version of this online business tool includes several useful features, including:
Unlimited Response Feedback
Custom Branding (Put Your Brand on Each Survey)
1,000 Emails Per Month
Regular Customer Support
Feedier also offers a free live demonstration with an expert who will walk you through how this valuable tool could help your business collect feedback.
You know your website needs to have stellar content to keep your audience engaged. But how do you know what searchers are really looking for so you can remain at the top of their search lists? Answer the Public is a wonderful free online business tool to help you do just that.
Answer the Public uses the results from Google and Bing to provide valuable insight into your customers’ minds. You’ll be better able to understand what is on their minds so you can provide the answers to their queries.
All you have to do is type a phrase relating to your business into the search box on Answer the Public’s home page. Your results are sorted into categories such as what, how, when, can, and so on, depending on what people type into Google or Bing. You’ll be able to see the exact questions on your customers’ minds and lots of great ideas for content that will bring them to your website.
Use the results from Answer the Public to create blog posts, landing pages, social media posts, and more. Creating engaging content your customers are eager to read has never been easier with the help of this free online business tool.
There are no two ways about it, in today’s marketing world, it is absolutely essential for your business to have a social media presence. However, managing your content across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, to name a few, is not an easy thing to do. Hootsuite is among the most popular social media management tools available and offers a tremendous number of features in their free version, making it even more enticing to businesses on a budget.
When you sign up to use this free online business tool, you get a dashboard, known as the Hootsuite dashboard, used to organize all of your social media profiles in one place, saving you tons of time.
Sounds good, right? Well, there’s more to Hootsuite that just being a super-helpful time-saver when it comes to social media. Hootsuite also allows you to:
Schedule your social media posts
Send private messages to target groups on any given social media platform
Gain valuable insight into how your social media posts perform through analytical reports and click summaries
Hootsuite is a great way to keep all of your social media ducks in a row without spending hours doing so. And since you need to keep up your social media presence in today’s market, you don’t want to get social-media-posting burnout. With Hootsuite, you won’t!
Amidst the vast array of project management tools available to businesses, it can be tough to find one that will not only improve the efficiency of getting projects completed while not draining your company’s bank account. While Wrike does offer a comprehensive paid version of their software, their free version includes an abundance of features useful to managing your business’s projects.
This free online business tool allows you to:
Develop plans easily across multiple teams
View real-time reports for all of your projects
Communicate effectively with all teams
Like many free online business tools designed to make your business run smoothly, Wrike gives you and your team a dashboard as a central location for all communication, projects, reports, plans, and priorities.
Wrike’s free version includes:
Access for up to five people
Task management tools
Real-time activity reports
A spreadsheet view
2GB of storage
Once you use the free version of Wrike, you may find yourself wanting more. If so, Wrike is surprisingly affordable as an upgrade for as little as $9.80 per month.
Slow websites directly affect SEO rankings, conversion rates, bounce rates, and dwell times. Your customers don’t like slow web pages, so you have to make sure yours is up to snuff with today’s impatient society. Although the faster the better in terms of load time, Google recommends your business’s website loading time to be less than one second.
That’s fast. Faster than the time it takes for you to read this sentence.
So how do you know how fast your site is? Well, you need to test it out. There are several website speed tests out there, Pingdom being one of the most well-known and comprehensive.
Once to put your website address into Pingdom’s speed test, this free online business tool delivers some pretty eye-opening results separated into four different sections: performance grade, page analysis, history, and waterfall breakdown. The results of this free speed test will help you see where your website needs some improvements in terms of speed, to avoid high bounce rates and low rankings.
Although the speed test itself is free, Pingdom offers a plethora of problem-solving solutions, including a 24/7 website monitoring service.
Video marketing is one of the most powerful online marketing tools you can use to drive traffic to your business, and when you think of online videos, chances are, your mind goes to YouTube.
With over 50 million users watching 5 billion videos per day, YouTube is a mega-giant in the internet video world. The more amazing fact is that YouTube is free to use for anyone, including businesses. This free online business tool is an excellent catalyst for gaining ranking ground, and you definitely need to get in on it.
Although creating videos themselves might cost you some money (or not), uploading them to YouTube won’t cost your business a penny. Not only that, those videos can then be shared across social media sites, within your email marketing campaigns, and on your website itself. There isn’t a free online marketing tool that can capture attention like YouTube because video is currently king in the internet marketing segment.
The list of benefits to using YouTube is pretty extensive, but just to name a few:
You’ll be able to reach audiences around the world.
You’ll get attention as no other marketing tactic can.
You’ll get a lot of website traffic.
You’ll gain the ability to go viral.
Your business doesn’t need to have deep pockets to achieve a successful website presence. So many helpful free online business tools are available to small and large businesses alike that will help you organize internally as well as get your name out there. Don’t get discouraged by assuming you’ll have to spend tons of money to make your online marketing efforts go further. It just may be easier than you think.
Speed is essential when it comes to your website load time. In July of 2018, Google specifically stated mobile page speed as one of the factors in their ranking algorithm designed for mobile search. The “Speed Update” changed the mobile-ranking game tremendously. Now more than ever, your mobile page speed needs to deliver quickly, or you’ll be left in the dust.
The Google Speed Update is the culmination of exponentially increasing data proving users want to find answers to their questions as fast as possible online. In 2018 alone, Google reports mobile pages take about 15 seconds to load on average. This is incredibly slow, considering 53% of users leave a mobile web page if it fails to load in just 3 seconds. And no, you can’t blame it on Internet speed. While it does play a role, the fault is a lack of mobile-friendly website design.
Here’s the good news— we’ve brought together three quick and easy ways to improve the mobile page speed of your website so you’ll see a lower bounce-rate and a higher conversion rate.
1. Get A Mobile Friendly Website Design
If your website isn’t mobile-friendly, you’re already behind. A mobile responsive website isn’t just best practices anymore; it’s an absolute prerequisite for online success and a benchmark for ranking on Google.
Mobile responsiveness means your website responds to fit the size of the device. Whether your users use your website from their desktop computer, their mobile phone, or their tablet, they should be able to access important content and features and still have an excellent experience.
The easier it is for your users to consume your website, the better. And Google knows it.
Without mobile responsiveness, you’re subjecting your users to zooming in and out, awkward scrolling, or worse.
When is the last time you looked at your website on your phone? If you don’t like how it looks, it’s already been affecting your business by costing you leads.
2. Put Your Content on a Diet
On mobile pages, speed and size are paramount. Start with the low-hanging fruit first: your mobile website’s content.
Keep the Essentials, Hide Everything Else Lean-out your website content by weeding out non-essentials from appearing on mobile. The fewer things to load, the more your mobile page speed increases.
You don’t need to remove everything, though. Simply make your content appear more efficient for a mobile user’s experience.
For example, if the desktop version of your website defaults to 5 images— unless they’re absolutely necessary, remove three from appearing on mobile-sized screens unless the user opts in to see them.
Take this concept and apply it to all of your mobile content.
Above-the-Fold is Mobile Page Speed Gold Wise management of above-the-fold content not only achieves the fast mobile page speed the Google Speed Update demands but prevents load delays since everything below-the-fold only loads when users scroll down.
Reduce the amount of text above and below the fold, and you’ve won half the battle. Likewise, while a picture is worth a thousand words, it’s also worth well over 1000 bytes. Images weigh down a web page because their files (bytes) have to be downloaded to the user’s device. If your images take up most of your mobile website’s above-the-fold real estate, you’ll need to consider two things:
Reduce the amount of space the image occupies on the page.
Compress the image file size to reduce the resolution.
3. Compress Your Data
Now that your mobile site is at a healthier weight from the removal and reduction of unnecessary or oversized content— the next step is to compress your page’s assets. Assets can include fonts, text, images, videos, and even code functions.
No matter what you need to compress, there’s a plethora of tools and systems to help you get the job done. Our favorite is the Website Planet Image Compressor. It is a simple, easy-to-use tool to compress your PNG or JPEG images by up to 80% without impacting the quality of the images. Try it for free!
Your website may be leaking valuable leads without you knowing it.
Recognizing which data points are screaming for help in a sea of website traffic data is daunting if you don’t know which website performance benchmarks are treats and which are tricks. Google Analytics is the best way to reveal where you’re letting valuable leads slip away and how to fix it.
Here are the three scariest numbers in Google Analytics to quickly identify which data points you simply cannot afford to overlook.
10+ Seconds Average Page Load Time
85%+ Bounce Rate on CPC Landing Pages
5 Seconds or Less Average Session Duration
See where to find these data points in Google Analytics, how they’re affecting your bottom line, and what you can do to transform your online success.
Benchmarking the 3 Scariest Numbers in Google Analytics
1. 10+ Seconds Average Page Load Time
You can find Average Page Load Time in your Google Analytics account in the Site Speed Overview report located under “Behavior” in the left side navigation bar.
Average Page Load Time is the average amount of time (in seconds) it takes for a page on your website to load. This is calculated starting from the initiation of a pageview (clicking on a page link) to the being fulling loaded in the user’s browser.
If any page on your website is taking longer than 10 seconds to load, be afraid. Be very afraid. Why? A 10+ second average page load speed means you’re losing upwards of 123% of your prospective customers. The horror!
Ultimately, there are 2 non-negotiable reasons why your website’s speed is a major factor influencing your digital success.
Non-Negotiable #1— Your Site’s Speed Influences Its Conversion Rate
On the Internet, seconds cost cold, hard cash. Over 50% of mobile users will abandon a website if it takes longer than three seconds to load. It’s a hard truth, but you’ll never lose money overestimating how lazy people are on the Internet. They want what they want and they want it fast.
In fact, with every second it takes your page to load, the probability of the user leaving your page increases exponentially.
When users don’t have a satisfactory experience with your website, research proves they’re quick to click the “back” button, conduct a new search, and visit your competitors’ sites until they can find what they need.
In short, if your website is slow, you’re just encouraging prospects to go to your competitors instead.
Non-Negotiable #2— Speed Matters to SEO
The second reason why your website’s speed is a major factor influencing your success is its influence on your ability to rank on search engine results pages. The slower your website, the harder it is for searchers to find your services or products online. How?
Back in 2010, Google made website speed a ranking factor.
“Speeding up websites is important — not just to site owners, but to all Internet users. Faster sites create happy users and we’ve seen in our internal studies that when a site responds slowly, visitors spend less time there. But faster sites don’t just improve user experience; recent data shows that improving site speed also reduces operating costs.” – Google
Fast forward to the now post-Google Speed Update era of 2018, your mobile site speed (not your website’s desktop speed anymore) directly influences your website’s ability to rank in Google.
This means the slower your site loads, the more likely you will rank lower on Google search result pages, no matter how much money you pour into SEO efforts or how niche your industry.
Resources for Improving Your Average Page Load Time
Speed equals revenue, so the faster your website loads the more earning potential you steal from your competitors.
2. 85%+ Bounce Rate on CPC Landing Pages
Find which landing pages have a bounce rate over 85% Bounce Rate by navigating to your Landing Page report under Behavior and Site Content. Then, add a source/medium secondary dimension, filter by your PPC platform (in this case we used Google CPC), and add a filter for pages within your campaign with bounce rates over 85%.
Bounce Rate is the percentage of the visitors who land on your page, don’t take any action, and then leave from the same page they landed on.
Landing Pages are the pages on your site that you’re directing users to after they click on an ad in your cost-per-click (CPC) campaigns.
To be fair, not every bounce rate is equal. But, what makes a high average bounce rate for your landing pages so scary is it correlates to the profitability of your paid search advertising campaigns.
Essentially, you’re basically throwing money in the wind if you are paying for significant traffic to your landing pages, but those users are bouncing at a rate of 80% or higher.
You’re paying to get people’s attention with PPC ads, only to have your site scare them away when you should be paying to get their attention and treating them to great content ultimately convincing them to do business with you.
Your landing page’s only job is to convert the lead that clicked on your ad. If your users are leaving the page without interacting with it, that means they’re not doing the thing you want them to do whether that’s making a purchase, calling your business, filling out a contact form, downloading a whitepaper, etc.
Landing page bounce rates over 85% high could be the result of several issues:
Users can’t immediately find what they’re looking for
You’re missing a call-to-action or it’s lacking urgency
Your website takes too long to load
Your website is difficult to use
Users don’t find your content useful
Your content isn’t relevant to your audience
Your PPC campaigns are targeting the wrong audience
3. 15 Seconds or Less Average Session Duration
You can compare the Average Session Duration of each of your marketing channels in your Google Analytics account in the “Channels” report located under “Acquisition” and “All Traffic” in the left side navigation bar.
Average Session Duration is the average amount of time a user has a browser open with your website in one of the active tabs. This is sometimes referred to as time on site. It doesn’t, however, mean a user is actively looking at your site the entire time it’s open in their browser.
Similar to bounce rate, not every session on your website is equal. What makes a 15 second or less average session duration from specific traffic channels (social, display advertising, paid search advertising, organic search, etc.) so scary is it represents how effective your digital marketing strategy is driving leads and revenue to your business.
As shown in the GIF above, discovering a low session duration from users who land on your site from a particular channel (in this case, display advertising) could be an indication of several issues with your digital strategy.
You’re reaching the wrong audience within the channel
The channel is not a good source of traffic from your niche
Your website isn’t relevant to users from that channel
Your website isn’t meeting user expectations (like not fulfilling a promise from an ad, etc.)
Your website design is unappealing to users coming from this device or channel.
We’re not saying an extremely long session duration is the key to your digital success, but there is a correlation between how long people engage with your website and its overall conversion potential.
If traffic from one of your channels is only sticking around for less than 15 seconds on average, it’s clear evidence you need to refine your overall digital strategy, including that of your website to better capture the attention of your visitors.
No matter your situation, improving your average session duration past 15 seconds may be easier than you think, especially with the right help.