With today’s technology, having a website that performs well is imperative to the success of any online business or organization. Website performance, or your website grade refers to how well a website functions and operates, including factors such as speed, efficiency, user experience, and overall functionality. A website that is slow or difficult to navigate can lead to frustrated visitors and a high bounce rate, ultimately hurting the website's rankings and online presence.
The Elements of A Website Grader
A website grader is a beneficial tool that can help website owners and marketers evaluate their website's performance across four key areas: performance, SEO, mobile, and security. By assessing each area, the website grader provides a comprehensive website performance report that highlights the website's strengths and weaknesses a website possesses and suggests actionable steps to improve its performance.
You can evaluate your website’s performance in three easy steps.
Enter your email - the one you’d like the results sent to
Enter your domain - the website you want to audit
Get your results - in minutes you’ll get your website performance report
By using a website grader regularly, website owners can manage their website's performance and ensure that their website provides a positive user experience across all devices. Now that we have a better understanding of what elements can impact your website performance report, let's dive in a little deeper.
Overall, website performance focuses on website speed and efficiency. A website that loads quickly and efficiently is more likely to provide a positive user experience and retain visitors. On the other hand, a slow-loading website can lead to high bounce rates and lost opportunities for engagement and conversion. The performance score provided by the website grader helps website owners identify areas where they can optimize their website's page speed insights and efficiency to increase traffic, improve conversion rates, and generate more leads.
The website grader will grade the website on various factors that are affecting the performance of the pages.
Page requests. Every time a user visits a webpage, their browser sends a request to the server to download all the files that make up that page. The more page requests the website makes, the slower it becomes. Try reducing the number of files your site loads at once.
Page speed. This refers to how quickly a page becomes interactive and responsive to user input. Top-ranking webpages should become interactive within 5.3 seconds. Slower loading pages will often cause visitors to abandon your site, drastically increasing your bounce rate.
Browser caching. Browser caching can increase website speed by storing frequently used content such as images and scripts in local memory for faster loading times for later sessions.
Page redirects. Multiple page redirects can make your site load slower. Aim for no more than one redirect per page and eliminate any unnecessary redirects to improve your site speed.
Image and file size. Images and files can take a long time to load, especially for large file sizes. Use responsive images or SVGs to optimize your images for different screen sizes without losing quality.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
A well-optimized website is more likely to rank higher in search results, making it easier for potential visitors to find the website organically. The SEO score provided by a website grader helps website owners identify areas where they can improve their website's optimization, and increase their website's online visibility and website health.
The SEO score is determined by factors that impact the online experience for both people and web crawlers alike.
Indexibility. In order for a page to appear in search results, search engines must be able to store the page in its index. No matter how well a page is optimized, if search engines can’t store it, no other changes will matter. To check if your website is indexed you can type “site:” followed by the URL into a search engine to see which pages are indexed.
Meta description. Although it doesn’t directly impact SEO, meta descriptions tell searchers what a page is about in search results, and can be a deciding factor if a user chooses to visit your site or a competitor’s.
Descriptive link text. Descriptive link text helps visitors know what they’ll see if they click the link. Link text such as click here, or read more can be too generic for readers. Instead, use descriptive phrases that accurately reflect the content of the linked page. For example, "Learn more about our services" or "Download the Ultimate Guide to Manufacturing”.
Mobile Responsive Design
The mobile performance area of a website grader is crucial in evaluating a website's mobile responsiveness and usability. With an increasing number of users using their mobile devices for search, it's essential to optimize your website for mobile use. A website that is not mobile-friendly may have a higher bounce rate if users have difficulty navigating or interacting with it on their mobile device.
The mobile score provided by the website grader helps website owners identify areas where they can optimize their website's mobile responsiveness. Improving website performance for mobile users can ensure that their website provides a seamless and enjoyable user experience on all devices, leading to increased engagement and conversion.
Legible Font Size. A font size that is too small or too large can make it difficult for users to read and navigate your website, especially on mobile devices. It is recommended that your font size is at least 12px so that the text is easily legible on all devices.
Clickable Elements. Clickable elements such as buttons and links are important for navigation and user interaction. Make sure that interactive elements are not too small or too close together for your mobile-friendly users.
Mobile Responsiveness. Responsive web design (RWD) will automatically adjust the page to fit the screen size of the device in use. A website that is not mobile-friendly can create a negative user experience and can impact the website's ability to rank in search results.
Security is a critical component in evaluating a website's overall safety and protecting against potential cyber threats, and also, people and search engines love secure websites. An unsecured website conveys that the site is untrustworthy, and will often stray visitors and web crawlers away from the site. By improving website security, website owners can protect their website and their users' data, ensuring a safe and secure browsing experience.
A website grader focuses on two key areas that are ultimately important to a website’s security.
HTTPS. Encrypts data to protect websites against cyber attacks and gives visitors confidence that your website is authentic and trustworthy. HTTPS is especially essential for websites that handle sensitive information such as passwords, credit card details, and other personal information.
Is Your Website Performing the Best it Can Be?
Website performance is essential for improving user experience and increasing a website’s position in search results. That's why we recommend using a tool like a website grader, to get an up-to-date and comprehensive analysis of your website's performance and narrow in on which areas could use improvement.
If you need help, contact us at 800-834-4910 or get in touch with an Inbound 281 SEO expert.