Do you want to optimize your business’ website for user engagement? You should.

There’s a difference between traditional SEO and engagement. When you optimize your content for a search engine, it will boost your traffic. This is because more people will see your website come up in their searches. However, none of that matters unless your website is easy to navigate and engage with.

So, in addition to ranking high on searches, you also want to focus on your website’s engagement.

This is especially important in light of the summer surge we’ve seen in Hawaiian tourism. More people are coming to our islands, and more people are searching for businesses near them to spend money at. Make sure your website stands out from the rest.

Also Read: How Businesses in Hawaii Create Effective Websites

A Tasty Analogy

Imagine an ice cream store. They have the flashiest signs and best advertisements in the world. An elite team handles their search engine and social media marketing. They’re endorsed by celebrities. They have nothing but five-star reviews all around. People want to flock to it. You want to try it out.

But when you arrive at the ice cream shop, the staff speaks a different language than you. It’s difficult to point out what you want. The lighting inside the store is dim, and they play their background music too loud. It takes forever to actually get what you order. And when your ice cream comes, they serve it to you on a flat plate instead of a cone or a bowl.

This is like a website with good traditional SEO, but bad engagement. People will visit, yes, but they won’t have a good time. And sooner or later the word will spread that the ice cream store isn’t what it was cracked up to be. This speaks to the need for ease of engagement on your site.

Also Read: 7 SEO Tools Real Experts Use Weekly

How to Uplevel Your Engagement

Here are three practical ways to boost engagement on your website:

  • Measure Engagement Accurately With Analytics

When it comes to improving engagement on your website, knowing is half the battle. Honestly, it’s probably three-fourths of the battle. You need a clear understanding of where your engagement sits before you make any adjustments. Then, once you start tweaking things, you need to see how it affects your stats.

We recently wrote an article about how Hawaii businesses can get comprehensive digital analytics. If you haven’t given it a read yet, I recommend starting there. If you have, let me refresh you.

Google Analytics 4 (also known as GA4) gives you a solid foundation for analyzing traffic on your website. Take the time to get set up with them; it will pay off for you in more ways than just engagement.

Once you have GA4 all set up, pay attention to the metrics of scroll depth, load time, and the hits on your CTAs. 

A CTA (call-to-action) is a link on your pages and blog posts inviting the reader to engage more deeply with your business. For us, it’s an invitation to book a consultation. For others, it may be a link to their e-commerce store or directions to their physical location. You want to know how often your CTA pages are visited, and which pages users tend to come from.

  • Get Outside Eyes

Next, have a friend or younger relative look through your website. Preferably, find a tech-savvy volunteer who hasn’t engaged with your website before. This way, they experience everything for the first time as a fresh user.

As we build and tweak our websites, we often get lost in small, granular details that only we see or care about. I know I’ve been guilty of this on more than one occasion. By letting someone browse through your site as a sort of “secret shopper,” you can see what new users actually see when they visit your site.

Make sure you write down the feedback they give to you. Make the necessary adjustments based on their recommendations. In this case, it’s better to trust their input even if they have less experience with your site than you.

  1. Go Into Depth With Google Tag Manager

Finally, let me share an additional tool that I haven’t written about much on this site. It’s called Google Tag Manager. Many businesses and SEO professionals use it for traditional SEO, which is fine and dandy. However, I’ve found it can also be used for engagement because of some of the unique metrics it can show you.

Google Tag Manager can do some things that GA4 can’t. For example, you can set up something called an Event Visibility Trigger. This function tells you when someone sees a particular element of your site on their screen. You can set it up for your CTA links.

Sometimes we put links to our store page or consultation link in places where the users don’t actually see because they’ve bounced somewhere else or scrolled past it. This way, you know how often your CTAs actually get seen, beyond how often they get clicked. If you find that they’re practically invisible, you can experiment with moving them to different places or linking to them more often.

Tags Manager is also fun to play around with… at least if you’re an SEO nerd like me. I recommend trying it out if you want to go deeper into both traditional SEO and engagement.

Also, if you want help to boost your website’s engagement like never before, reach out to us today!

Further Reading: Designing a Website That Produces Results

 

Photos Courtesy of KOBU Agency and Lama Roscu

Hawaii SEO & Web Design Blog

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