If you’re a new website owner, then you may be wondering how you can make sure that your website is always in great shape and that it remains user-friendly. Aside from adding a survey tool to your website, you must also check how the site functions on a regular basis. To do this, use the following tips:
All Links Must Work
Nothing is more frustrating to a user than clicking on a link in hopes of finding the content they want to see and then not getting it. For this reason, you must check if all your links are active and working; whether it’s internal or external. While you’re at it, you can check if the old links are still redirecting to relevant content. If they aren’t, then you can either remove them or link them to another site that is more useful to you and your users.
Proofread Your Content
While you’re checking if the links work, you should also take the time to proofread the content itself. Yes, you may have done this before posting, but you might as well do it again. After all, you may have missed a few simple things such as typos. Also, you may want to take out a few sentences that are just plainly unnecessary. This will keep your content concise and readable.
Additionally, going back to your old content time and again will give you the opportunity to add links to your newer blogs or new relevant external content.
Fix or Replace Broken Icons and Images
One of the biggest errors you’ll notice on your website is a broken image or icon. Nothing spells “unprofessional” and “unreliable” more than this. Thus, if you have such an error, you must fix or replace it immediately. While you’re at it, you may find that an image is outdated or simply not at aesthetically pleasing as you once thought it was. Put a better one in its place.
If some of the images have a link embedded in it, then test this as well.
Have a Usable Contact Form
You must absolutely have a contact form on your website – especially if you offer products and service. This is the most basic form of communication between you and your users. It’s where they can avail of your offers or even give you feedback regarding what you do. Think of it like a really bare survey tool for your website.
But aside from having one, it must also be user-friendly. Be sure that there is a link to it in the footer. Usually the anchor text to this is “Contact Us”. Also, if you’re using a captcha, then make sure that it’s readable.
While you’re doing, look if your form is asking for the right information. It may be missing an email, age, name, etc. tab that you may need.
Have an RSS Feed Button and Test it
An RSS Feed is an attractive option for users to keep up to date with their favorite websites’ content. If your goal is to have a loyal following – which you should – then you must have an RSS Feed Button on your website. Make sure it’s noticeable, but not an eyesore. Then, test it out for yourself to see it the signups are working. You will also notice how your content will look on RSS Feed Readers. At the same time, check if you’re getting the right information about the people that sign up.
Maintain the Home Page Button
The home page button is absolutely important so that your users don’t end up lost in a sea of your content. To make this user friendly, it must be in a place where it’s easy to find. Usually, people would look for this on the top left where they would expect your logo to be in. Add the image of your logo there and have it link to your home page. Check this as much you can in order to make sure that it’s always working.
Test the Site in All Browsers
Not only are new browser being created, but also current browsers are always being updated. The moment you find out that there’s a new hot browser on the market, or if there’s an update on the current one, then you must see if your website works smoothly in these mediums. A website like Browser Shots is a great tool to use to see if your website is compatible with multiple browsers and their different versions.
It’s also a good practice to test an unknown browser every month.
Check the Search Logs
If you don’t have a search bar, then get one now. Not only is it practical for your users, but for you as well since you will have access to the search log. This will give you a general idea of what users are looking for the most on your website; what they want to see. When you know this, you know where to concentrate your efforts and what type of content to give your visitors. When they come back or visit for the first time, they’ll be pleased to find what they are looking for. Thus, you must have this tool on your site. It’s just as valuable as your website’s survey tool. If you do have one, then regularly check the logs to see what you need to offer to satisfy your visitors.
Basically, you want to be able to make your website convenient for your visitors. So test it regularly as a user and see if there are any bugs and errors that you want to smooth out.