We're back at Alt Summit this week and are so excited to be here. It's a little different this time around - I'm presenting a roundtable - and it feels so good to be able to give back to an event that has helped HLO grow in so many significant ways.
I am hosting a roundtable, Managing a Healthy Website. This is an adaptation on the presentation I did for The Coterie a few months ago. One of the learnings I took away from giving that presentation, was that I needed to trim down the content. Big time. The value I can add to the wealth of technical information readily available online is sharing what I believe to be the most important tidbits to act on. It's not about sharing everything I know. So here is a trimmed down effort of actionable list that can be (and should be!) put into practice now and moving forward.
First, there are a few things that should be included in every page or post on your digital presence. Build these checks into your routine and make sure you are doing it with every single post, page and image.
Google Analytics shows you what people see and do on your site. It's an incredibly powerful too (especially considering it's 100% free) but you can also get lost in the weeds pretty easily. I check a few high level metrics each week, but then only really dive into the data if I'm looking for something specific.
Landing pages are the pages users actually enter your site from. Very often, this is not your homepage! Your top landing pages are great places to start when optimizing
Find it: BEHAVIOR > SITE CONTENT > ALL PAGES > LANDING PAGES
The Google Search Console shows you what Google sees and does on your site. This tool used to be called Webmaster Tools, which honestly sounds intimidating to me, someone who i supposed considers herself a wemastah! The new name is more indicative of what the tool does and I'm in full support.
The point of this tool is to help you improve the technical health of your site for Google's algorithm. Even if you're not concerned about search traffic to your site, the Search Console can help show you issues you might have onsite that affect user experience well beyond the search page.
1. Submit Your Site Map!
Your sitemap is a technical map to help Google understand the kind of information you have on your site, how often it’s updated, and how it’s organized. You just need to submit your sitemap (usually www.yoursite.com/sitemap.xml) once, then Google will continue to check it from there!
Find it: CRAWL > SITEMAPS > ADD/TEST SITEMAP
2. Check Your Crawl Errors: