Like your private home, your web site wants a common decluttering to “spark pleasure” in its guests. Use the following pointers to clear up your web site after a content material audit.
We’ve all seen web sites which can be so cluttered that it’s tough to discover what you’re wanting for. How might you navigate a spider net of decade-old experiences, blogs with damaged hyperlinks, and pages with miscellaneous objects thrown round? If this seems like your affiliation’s web site, then it’s time for a cleanup so as to provide a higher person expertise.
You’ve already performed your content audit, so you’ve a plan of motion for your pages. Now, it’s a matter of figuring out how to greatest take away, revise, and reorganize your content material. Use the following pointers from Carrie Hane, coauthor of Designing Connected Content and Association Content Strategies for a Changing World, to declutter your web site successfully.
Delete Content Without Stranding Users
It’s time to take away pages you deemed expendable in your content material audit. But doing this successfully shouldn’t be so simple as clicking “delete” in your CMS, since you don’t need customers to get misplaced in a sea of “web page not discovered” messages and error pages.
There are a few issues you are able to do utilizing HTTP status codes. One is to assign a “410 Gone” standing to completely deleted pages slightly than a “404 Not Found.” The difference is that a 410 will inform search engines like google and yahoo that the web page was intentionally and completely deleted, eradicating it from search outcomes, making it much less possible for customers to stumble onto a deleted web page.
When deleting pages, bear in mind to take away hyperlinks in your web site that lead to these deleted pages. Tools such as Google Analytics may also help you discover damaged hyperlinks in your web site so you possibly can take away them effectively. And when you’re taking pages offline, maintain an archive of deleted pages so you possibly can nonetheless reference them if wanted. This might be so simple as unpublishing pages in your CMS so they’re seen solely to web site directors.
“I’d say the number-one cause individuals are hesitant to do away with issues on their web site is, ‘Where will it go?’” Hane says. “If you’ve a clear archiving coverage, then you possibly can say, ‘It’s not disappearing from the face of the earth; it’s simply going away from our web site and over right here.’”
Consolidate Redundant Content
If you’re deleting duplicate content material, use a 301 redirect to ship customers to a related web page with related info. A redirect will assist customers discover what they want and keep in your web site as a substitute of hitting a lifeless finish at a deleted web page. This is helpful when, for instance, you need to consolidate overlapping info on three pages and put all of it on one URL.
Reorganize Content for Easier Site Navigation
“The suggestions from the audit needs to be extra holistic, and never simply a checklist of pages to delete and rewrite. You’re most likely going to have to do some reorganization as nicely,” Hane says.
With newly deleted pages, content material gaps would possibly develop in your web site; that is the place the content model you created throughout your audit will come in useful. Content modeling entails figuring out how your content material needs to be structured and visualizing your web site’s content material ecosystem.
Revise Content for Better Performance
Sometimes, a web page accommodates invaluable info, but it surely’s simply not offered in the best means. How you revise your content material ought to rely in your group and its objectives, however there are normal greatest practices to think about as you rewrite pages:
Follow website positioning tips. Spruce up outdated or underperforming content material by enhancing web page website positioning. Hane says good website positioning has turn into rather more advanced than simply including a few key phrases, and organizations want to think about fixing web page construction, utilizing HTML components, including multimedia, contemplating content material freshness, and paying consideration to hyperlink high quality and amount.
Hane additionally recommends utilizing a information to break down the numerous various factors of website positioning. The Periodic Table of SEO Factors from Search Engine Land examines six totally different website positioning classes and assigns a degree of significance to every element. (Our third entry on this collection on web site optimization will cowl website positioning in additional depth.)
Improve readability. Old pages you haven’t touched in years might comprise run-on sentences, overly difficult info, or poor page design. Hane recommends consulting a readability guide and following these tips:
- Use plain language.
- Write in brief sentences.
- Divide textual content into brief paragraphs and break up copy with bullet factors, accordions, characteristic containers, and instruments.
- Structure your pages with headings and subheadings, and apply heading tags to the HTML.
- Remove advanced terminology the place you possibly can. Use easier phrases to make your level, or present full context across the advanced time period to assist readers perceive.
This is an element 2 of our collection on web site optimization. You can learn half 1, about content material audits, here; keep tuned for half 3, about website positioning.