4 Free Tools Every Entrepreneur Needs to Track Their Website's Performance
When you have a site or blog that has been running for years, and you may start to see that your numbers are dropping, visitors are not returning, and conversions are decreasing.
The question is: why?
What's affecting your site's performance can't be summed up in a one easy answer. As a marketer, businessperson, or entrepreneur, you should be keeping an eye on a lot of factors to better understand what is impacting your site, but there are some areas of focus you pay special attention to.
The main factors that have been impacting site performance in the past few years and the questions that you should ask yourself are:
- Is my site mobile friendly? How can I know and what should I fix?
- Is my site's speed optimal? How can I make it faster?
- Is my site ranking on search engines? How can I test this?
- Does my site contain coding errors? How can I fix it? Are search engines and browsers reading my site properly? Is my site compatible?
1. Is my site mobile friendly? How can I know and what should I fix?
Put away your smartphone because Google has an amazing tool called google Mobile-Friendly Test Tool that will give you an answer as to whether your site has a mobile-friendly design, look, and feel.
Google's Mobile-Friendly Test Tool is a quick-and-easy way to see how mobile users will be viewing your site. To optimize mobile performance, ask yourself these four simple questions:
- Is the text on the site too small to read?
- Is the content on the site wider than the screen?
- Is the Mobile viewport set? (this is a meta-tag telling browsers to adapt to the proper screen size)
- Are links too close together? Is your site harder to navigate on mobile?
You can find the Mobile-Friendly Test Tool here: https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/
2. Is my site's speed optimal? How can I make it faster?
There's a rather simple solution to the problems posed by both questions here, the PageSpeed Insights tool.
Essential to the maintenance of web content, what is exceptional about the PageSpeed Insights tool is that it tells you what makes your site faster across all devices.
Why is site speed important? Well, seeing that our collective attention span is getting shorter and shorter, making visitors wait any time between 4-10 seconds will likely lead to a lost conversion. And let's not forget the fact that all search engines consider site-speed as a ranking signal.
So what questions can PageSpeed Insights answer?
● Are you using legible font sizes?
● Is the page too big or too small for the viewport? (Mobile)
● Is your viewport configured correctly?
● Are your images configured for optimal performance?
● Is your server response time optimal?
● Are you leveraging browser caching?
● Are you misusing landing pages redirects?
You can find the tool here: https://developers.google.com/speed/pagespeed/insights/
3. Is my site ranking on search engines? How can I test this?
One of the most useful tools that many marketers aren't capitalizing on is the Google search tool, meaning the search engine itself.
As obvious as it sounds, using Google can provide you with tons of details on how your site is ranking.
That being said, there is a not-quite-as-obvious way to use Google when tracking your site's performance.
The best way to see if your site is being indexed is by just adding "site:" before your site's URL. Google will then return the search results within the specific URL, and if your site doesn't show up in the results, it means your site is not indexed.
You can find the tool here: https://www.google.com
4. Does my site contain coding errors? How can I fix it? Are search engines and browsers reading my site properly? Is my site compatible?
Owning a site that contains absolutely no coding errors is quite rare. If anything, it's more normal that a site has coding errors. You see, after many updates and changes, errors can begin piling up, entirely unbeknownst to you. And the more this happens the harder it gets for search engine spiders(bot) or browsers to go through your page.
This might cause a lot of problems, such as:
- The site will not get indexed properly
- The site will not load properly
- The site will stop showing properly
- Some pieces of important code (such as Google Analytics, if placed at the bottom of the page) will not load properly and not record visits or conversions.
- The site will be slower
All in all, it is important to test your site constantly and fix any issues immediately.
My advice is to test your site, print the page in PDF, and send it to your programmer to get the problems sorted.
A tool that you can (and should use) is called W3C Validation Service, which you can find here: https://validator.w3.org/
How can you take action?
Don't wait another minute and have users be frustrated by your site's poor performance. My advice is check your site across all these tools right away, print the results, and send them to your marketer, programmer, and SEO expert. Ensure everything is handled right away and enjoy a site that has reached a new level of optimized performance.