Small organizations may not have the means for a web team army or an employee dedicated to all things Google updates and analytics—you don’t need it to be successful. Take advantage of new Google algorithm updates to revamp your web presence.
Catching up to the mobile web movement
If your organization isn’t in the position to overhaul website design or switch over to a responsive template, that’s okay. There are always incremental changes you can make along the way regarding accessibility and overall user experience.
Google’s recent changes can be the perfect opportunity for a small organization to improve its website UX. About 60 percent of all online traffic now comes from mobile devices. Google wants its users to have that seamless online experience whenever they click through a mobile link, so it’s made some algorithm changes to improve SEO for websites that are mobile friendly.
Here’s a quick recap of exactly what Google changed in April: websites will be rewarded (e.g. ranked higher on the results page) if it’s easier for visitors to access and interact on them via mobile devices, while penalizing those that don’t. Example: if you searched for something on a mobile device in March and then searched again today, the results pages could look completely different.
Small organizations now have a chance to respond and increase their SEO rankings—growing both pages with responsive content and overall traffic. Roughly 80 percent of smaller employers don't have a mobile-friendly website or app—but Google’s updates offer a chance for your organization to get ahead.
Responsive web design basics
Nearly 30 percent of U.S. search requests came from mobile devices during the fourth quarter of 2014. But a recent survey from the National Small Business Administration found four out of five business owners reported having no mobile website.
A fully designed website that adapts to virtually any context delivers a compelling user experience, no matter your product or industry. Not sure where your small organization’s at in terms of website updates? To start, check out Google’s free assessment tool and see how you measure up.
It’s also important to remember that while content is still king, if your web visitors can’t read it properly, it won’t be helpful for anyone. A website’s UX holds just as much weight.
New Google algorithm updates are here—now what?
Difficulty and price come up often when thinking about website improvements, but those can be common misconceptions. There are several services available on the market that have affordable and easy-to-use web design and CMS packages for growing organizations. Here’s what you should strive for:
- Accessibility and Design: You should be making your organization’s content available to as many users as possible, whether it’s checking all of your embedded media or providing alternate content for users with visual disabilities. No matter the device used, your user should have an easy time finding what they need, and it needs to have a consistent look and feel.
- Usability for you and your members: Once users arrive to your website, what are their experiences like? All content should be easy to understand and concisely answer key questions. This is your opportunity to remind members why the website offers a seamless, informative experience.
- Back-end usability counts, too: It’s just as important to have a user-friendly back end of your website. An easy and simple CMS (content management system) to manage website content and make updates as you grow goes a long way. Pick the right CMS that’s intuitive and makes it easy for non-technical users to quickly create and update content to accommodate your evolving needs.
- Engagement: Use your online presence as a hub to collaborate, connect with members and drive engagement. Even though building an online community might not seem like a priority when revamping your website, it’s a great way to galvanize a greater audience, increase membership and drive revenue. Consider enhancing your online website with a suite of community tools to help you create compelling user-generated content, increase SEO and drive engagement.
Dive in further to learn how your small organization can start checking off the mobile boxes. See some of Higher Logic’s favorite resources on this topic:
- Google’s Webmaster Central Blog
- Higher Logic’s Tip Sheet, Make the Shift: 6 Tips for Creating a Compelling Online Presence
- Ernie Smith’s recent article on Associations Now
- Higher Logic’s Dave Sabol offers his take on the changes
Ready to crush your SEO rankings? Then prepare to find the right fit for your organization. Higher Logic offers a small org package that allows growing organizations to build a new (or update an old) responsive website, get a full user-friendly CMS that fits your needs and grow your member base with a suite of built-in, best-in-class community tools. Read more about Higher Logic Small Org or get a personalized demo to see it in action.