You most likely checked your website insights before the new year and saw your website’s evolution during the last year. After reading all that data, you can see what’s missing, what you can improve, and where you want to be next year.
A few examples of website goals for a new year can be to increase the conversion rate, make the website more accessible, grow brand awareness, improve the website ranking, decrease the bounce rate, and many more.
We’ll try to go through some of them in this article. This list doesn’t need to be done at the beginning of the New Year. Always find and set some achievable targets and work your way to them.
Pick a realistic timeframe so you can achieve some real results and not be demotivated by unrealistic goals. (hint: you’ll probably see small SEO improvements in one month. Be realistic!)
How do I create goals for my website?
Prepare for a new year and list specific and achievable goals for your website. Before making a list check your website’s insights and see what is missing and what you can improve. Try to make realistic goals that you can achieve this year.
One year is a perfect time frame in which you have plenty of time to grow your website. Remember that some improvements can cost money and time, and some can cost you only time.
Make sure your business can support the cost and you have enough time to grow your website besides the daily tasks you already have.
Decrease your bounce rate
Goal: reduce the bounce rate by 5%
Bounce rate is the percentage of visitors who navigate away from your website after they viewed only one page. This page can be a page on which a visitor can land after clicking on a google result or an ad. The visitor can access this page but leave after due to various reasons such as they can’t find enough information, the price is too high, the product photos are low quality, the website is taking too long to load, the website isn’t mobile friendly, and so on. The first impression is essential even when it comes to websites.
Analyze your website and see why your visitors leave and do not continue browsing on other pages from your website. Because we are generally talking about decreasing the bounce rate, we can’t precisely say what you can do on your website, but we’ll give you some tips to reduce the bounce rate.
Understand why visitors are leaving after they access one page
Before trying to decrease the bounce rate, you need to find out why your visitors leave after they access one page. The reasons can be plenty and various such as targeting the wrong audience, misleading or not specific enough paid ads, wrong title tags and wrong meta descriptions, not enough information about the products, a website that’s not responsive, and many more. Try to put yourself in your client’s shoes and see what bothers you regarding the user experience.
- Check if your website is loading too slow
Check your website speed and make sure it doesn’t take too long to load. You can lose visitors if they have to wait more than 2 seconds to see what’s on your website.
- Make sure your title tags and meta description accurately describe the page content
- Make your website responsive
Your website has to be responsive. Visitors who access your website from a phone or other devices should have a pleasant experience.
- Work on your product pages
Work on your product pages and offer your visitors and potential clients more information. Try to check everything when describing a product, from color and size to explaining why this is a product worth buying. It really depends on what you are selling, but in all cases, you need to provide as many details as possible in short paragraphs or even a list or bullets so visitors can quickly go through them.
Another important thing is adding videos on your product page, not only photos. You can make a 360-degree product video, use a manufacturer video, or even make a real video of the product about how it looks and how it works.
- Use cross-selling or upselling
By using cross-selling or upselling, you’ll make your visitors take a look at other pages from your website and see more of your products. We will not go through all the elements you need to have on a product page because we are talking now about decreasing the bounce rate. Read here more about how you can improve the product page.
- Make the text visible
Make sure there is enough contrast between the font color and background. Pick a font that is easy to read because the text must be legible. Especially when we talk about an online shop. Your customers want to see your colorful brand, but they also need to read the information about your products and brand. Also, your text has to have a proper size so people can read it without problems.
- Target the right audience on your website
Always think about who can use or buy your products and try to sell them to the right people. You need to find your website’s target audience and target that audience. Don’t waste your marketing budget targeting everyone. Find out who is your target audience and invest your money to become more visible to that group. If your paid ads appear to people that are not interested in your products, they can still click on the ad and land on your website page. The uninterested visitors can take a look at that page and exit. This can increase the bounce rate, but on the other hand, they see your company for the first time. It is okay for brand awareness but not for decreasing the bounce rate and campaigns focused on conversions.
Use Google AdWords, Facebook ads, Instagram ads, Pinterest ads, and other paid ads to send ads to your target audience.
You can make social media posts periodically and use relevant hashtags for your products and for your target audience. Also, find influencers in your niche and ask them to create a product review or talk about your products. Your target audience has to be found in their followers.
Drive more traffic from your target audience to your website
Set a goal to increase the percentage of visitors to your website from your target audience by at least 50% this year. You can drive more traffic from your target audience to your website by posting regularly on your social media, using paid ads, and remarketing. Go where they spend more time on the internet and be present on those websites and platforms. This will also increase brand awareness among your target audience.
The data you’ve gathered so far about people who interracted with your business will help you a lot in this aspect. You are interested about finding more about the people who did certain actions, actions that ultimately bring revenue.
A great way to think about this is: what does an average visitor that did X look like? Where X is the action, be it a sale, form filling, asking for details or any conversion or action in your conversion funnel. And by look like I don’t mean if he has brown eyes. We’re looking for demographic data and any other attributed that we can use when targeting an audience. Age, gender, interests, location, etc.
Increase the conversion rate
Goal: increase your conversion rate by 3% this year.
Do you want to increase your conversion rate this year? Let’s talk about conversion rate and how you can calculate it before we get into how to increase it. You can calculate the conversion rate by dividing the number of conversions by the total number of interactions tracked during the same period of time and multiplying by 100. The conversion rate is expressed through a percentage.
The process of actively trying to increase our website’s conversion rate using various tests and modifications is called CRO – conversion rate optimization.
A few key elements when we talk about increasing your conversion rate are:
- Know your products and your target audience
- Include reviews from your customers on your website
- Add live chat to offer a better customer support
- Give coupons and announce through social media, paid ads, and email marketing your latest offers and the newest products
- Use email campaigns and remind your visitors that they have not finished their orders yet
- Inform your clients through email if a product that they have on the Wishlist now benefits from a discount
- Make better product descriptions that include relevant keywords, photos, and videos.
- Improve your website accessibility by creating a responsive website, a strong CTA, an easy order form, and an excellent overall user experience.
- Use trust signals everywhere relevant.
- Hide unnecessary information on checkout pages to make placing an order a more enjoyable experience
We only talked about a few examples because when it comes to improving a website things can vary case by case. You need to find what’s missing and improve it. Talk with your marketing team and your website agency if you can’t pinpoint what’s missing. They will most likely give you a full audit and guide you.
Increase your website ranking
Goal: increase website ranking
Do you want to make it a goal to increase your website ranking this year?
We’re basically talking about SEO here.
You need to post quality content more often on your website. Work on your product descriptions and even create a blog for your online store. Write more content if you already have a blog on your online shop. Give your customers tips on how to use your products or how to take care of them. You can give plenty of tips, and all of this content is evergreen content. Add videos and photos to the posts. Don’t forget about interlinking. The more blog posts you have, the more interlinking you can do.
Always search what keywords are relevant to your website and use those. Keywords are the words people use when they do a google search. You have to match those words with the words on your website. But don’t just throw those words or phrases one after another on your product page or your blog. Use them smartly in elegant phrases. Don’t forget about meta description, title, or alternative text. Meta tags are essential for your website.
Things that you can actually manage from your website (like great product descriptions, meta titles etc.) are basically what everyone calls on-page SEO.
Another important key in increasing your website ranking is gaining backlinks from external websites. Find reputable websites with a better rank to link to your website. The higher the rank the better. Your website rank will increase with every backlink from a serious and reputable website. This is off-page SEO.
Usually, on-page SEO is easier and/or less costly. I mean, you don’t necessarely need to invest too much money to improve your products descriptions. And while we’re on the subject make sure your website is on point when it comes to technical SEO (example: heading tags are correct and present, schema.org is present and correct, you have breadcrumbs etc.).
I usually like this approach when it comes to SEO: get as much as you can of your house in order, and then strive for off-page SEO like backlinks and such. This is because your developer, based on a proper on-page SEO audit, can usually fix a lot of your stuff (and sometimes you can do it yourself!) quite fast and it will have a good impact – usually quite fast. This will also make sure you have a proper foundation when it comes to your business’es SEO and online presence.
Grow your business social media account
Goal: grow the business’s social media accounts
There are so many social media platforms nowadays. Try to be present, if not on all of them, at least on the ones where your target audience spends more of their time. Be creative and post constantly. Interact with your clients. Use relevant hashtags and pin your business location to reach more accounts. People can search and follow a certain hashtag and not your account, but this doesn’t mean they will not buy from your store. They will find you through hashtags.
You can find and hire a social media manager if your budget allows it. Or you can post yourself if you’re a small business with a small budget that can’t cover a social media manager or if you have plenty of time left to post on social media after you are done with the day-to-day business activities. Find social media influencers that suit your product’s niche and make a collaboration or offer a discount for a future order if customers post their unbiased opinion on social media about your products. Don’t forget to create a shop on social media platforms so your clients can easily see and buy your products.
You can also hold contests and use paid ads on social media platforms that have the purpose of sending clients to your website’s social media account.
If you’re on a budget, don’t fall into the pitfall of not posting because you can only post once or twice a week, and that’s not enough, or the posts are not that ‘premium looking’ like you see on some of the big brands out there. Two posts a week can actually have an effect. Just do it!
Grow your brand and website awareness
Goal: grow my brand awareness
How to grow awareness about your brand and your website? Post constantly on social media and ask your customers to post photos of your products and talk about their opinion. Try to get external links from other blogs that suit your niche by starting a referral program, using paid social advertising, PPC advertising (pay per click), using influencer marketing, and creating more content on your website’s blog. These are only a few examples.
Increase your email subscribers list
Goal: increase my email subscribers list by 10% this year
Make a goal to increase your email list this year. Email subscribers are more likely to buy more often from your website than those who aren’t subscribed to your website. Run more email campaigns but don’t spam your audience. Keep them updated with your online shop’s newest products and the best offers and coupons. How can you make your website visitors subscribe to your newsletter?
Make a banner, a slide-in, or a pop-up that informs them of the advantages of being subscribed to the newsletter.
Grow the number of first-time buyers
Goal: get more new clients
Is your goal to make more first-time clients or new buyers? Give a coupon with a 5% discount on the first order. Another key element in gaining the trust of new clients is the validation given by the reviews. Ask your customers to leave reviews so they can share their experiences. Reviews are powerful social proof that can convince new visitors to become new clients.
Improve customer support
Goal: improve customer support and increase customer satisfaction through better service
Customer support is extremely important because it is a direct link between your company and your clients. You can easily offer customer support on your website with the help of a live chat. Professional communication with your website’s visitors can improve sales and increase the conversion rate.
You are not to blame if the delivery is late due to the delivery services or if something got smashed on the road. We all had our bad experiences when we bought something online. But this doesn’t mean you can say it is what it is. Talk with your customers and let them know what happened and how you can help. You can send another product or give the money back. All that matter is to show your client that you only want what’s best for them.
Another example of increasing your customer support is to answer your clients’ questions on a live chat and help them find what they are searching for or lead them to other products that work even better for them.
Reduce time spent by your employees or partners to complete the tasks
Goal: improve time management in the workplace
If you have an online shop, you know that adding new products, creating new campaigns, checking orders, talking with customers, having a social media presence, writing blog posts, and keeping your platform up to date is taking a lot of time. Even if you have employees or work with agencies, this still takes a lot of time. You can reduce the time spent on these tasks this year by getting more organized. Define what everybody has to do and put some deadlines. For example, plan in advance your promotions during this year. This way, your marketing team, and your employees will know to prepare properly, and there will be no more time wasted.
This is partly tied to the previous point, but try and look for friction points. Things that suck. Pages that don’t get results. Stuff like this. And I’m talking about your whole business. Restocking is ruining your profits because people pre-order and then they cancel those orders because the delivery of your products from the manufacturer takes longer than you realise? Fix it.
Notice that some pages have a bigger exit rate, bounce rate, or loading time than others? Grab a coffee and analyze what’s going on on those specific pages.
And sometimes, you can dig even deeper with services that provide a heatmap of how your customers engage with a page like a checkout page. You need to find things that most people find hard to do or are annoyed by, and fix them. This will give you the most bang for your money.
In conclusion, analyze, set, and go
You have last year’s annual report and all your website data. Go through all of those statistics and see what’s missing and what can be improved. There is always room for improvement, especially when we’re talking about eCommerce.
Set realistic and achievable goals for your website and start working. Set a strategy that suits your business. There is always a limited budget and a limited amount of time so keep this in mind.