With every degree that goes up, we are slowly waking up from our hibernation. If your living will have been temporarily hidden under a blanket binge watching yet another Netflix show, it’s time for it to rise again.
The spring is knocking on our doors and that can only mean it’s time to clean up. From the endless shelves in your wardrobe to the broken links at your website – now is the best time to put your life in order.
Just like your home, your website suffers from your winter idleness and you need to make up for it as soon as possible. We’ve collected the 5 ways to spring clean your website in 2018.
1. Tidy up your broken links
Including external links to your content is an essential part of your SEO strategy. Links can also make your pages more informative, useful and complete.
Nevertheless, just like anything else in life, the web changes. Slugs change, websites transform and links stop working.
While at first, a broken link might not seem like such a huge deal, once you go deeper into their nature you’ll be just as convinced in their malevolence. That can affect your user experience in numerous ways. Moreover, Google specifically mentioned as one of their Webmaster Guidelines the following: “Ensure that all links go to live web pages”.
Fixing those errors should become a part of your weekly web chores but in case you’ve skipped a whole season, it’s surely time for spring cleaning them.
To do so you’ll need to divide the process into two stages:
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1. Identifying broken links.
Manual checks are possible but are mainly compatible with small websites where you can run Chrome’s Check My Links extension. For larger websites, I would recommend a more professional tool worth investing in. Ahrefs and Semrush offer not only a backlink checker but also provide keyword research, competitive analysis, and rank tracking. You can check your website’s health and make sure all of the links are up and working.
2. Fixing broken links.
The approach here is completely dependant on the individual broken link and its fate is up to your decision. If the content of the link is gone for good, there are a couple of strategies you can apply. First, by understanding the context try to identify the missing piece. Then, evaluate the importance of the link. Finally, either delete it or replace it with a working one.
2. Check your media
A picture is worth a thousand words. But what if that picture is missing? Links are not the only thing that could be broken. Images, videos, and other media could also be not working.
While it’s highly unusual for images to simply go missing, it’s a good idea to perform regular checks on your media just to ensure that everything is working.
Take a look at your content and identify wrong, outdated, or simply broken images you can replace. That can also refresh your whole look and add a new life to a dull website. Which leads to the next point- your design.
3. Freshen up your design
As a website owner, you know better than anyone else how fast digital trends change. What seemed cutting-edge innovative a few months ago could look boring and outdated today. That’s why keeping up with the web design trends could allow you to maintain your website forever young.
While the biggest web design trends of 2017 haven’t yet left the stage, it’s worth trying to incorporate some new features. For instance, if you haven’t made use of the animation trend yet, trying to include a few motion elements into your design is something your users will appreciate and embrace.
Some of the easiest ways to freshen your design without actually revamping the whole website is adding individual visuals which seem sharp and modern. That includes but isn’t limited to: fonts, movement, colors, shapes, images.
4. Update information
Just like everything else we’ve mentioned, information has an annoying property. It wears out. This includes both, the cases when the information is simply not correct anymore, and the ones when the information sounds old-fashioned and outdated. Whatever it is, spring is the right time to update it.
From your About page to your Home page, from your contact details to your product descriptions, it’s essential to have a correct and well-written content.
If for some reason, you’ve left your old address on your Contact Page, or your Team pictures include a member who has left, make sure to update the new information. Crawl your website, go through the key pages and select any misleading content or wrong details that need an update.
5. Take up a new content strategy
Even though New Year’s resolutions have long passed and the whole stocktaking thing must be over by now, it might be the right time to think about a new content strategy.
Take for an example of your progress for the past year. What would you change or add to your current rankings and performance? Coming up with a completely fresh strategy is not only time-consuming but also quite overwhelming.
Realizing it as a process, however, could facilitate to clarify the steps that need to be taken. From blog posts to social media marketing – your content strategy shapes your website’s future and its users’ experience.
Tools such as CoSchedule will allow you to organize your whole marketing strategy into a collective calendar and thus, keep track of your content activities and SEO efforts.
Don’t forget to also…
As you can see, to spring clean your website means undertaking various steps towards a clearer and better-working website. Besides of your own work, your website’s performance is highly dependant on something external – your web hosting provider.
In the spring, think about your speed, uptime and overall hosting performance. Evaluating your current provider can and will allow you to make an informed choice for a website transfer or upgrade.
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