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To increase traffic to your website is of course a major part of an online marketing strategy but don’t overlook the importance of what your visitors might be experiencing when they get there. Afterall, high volumes of traffic are useless to you if these visitors are not converting. There can be many factors to consider when looking at low or falling conversion rates.

Little glitches or errors will frustrate the user and more than likely turn them away; like a search function that doesn’t work properly or a slow loading page. Worse still, a shopping cart that fails to add the products or forms that have errors.

There is one particular tool that you may find very helpful for looking at how your visitors are interacting with your site and in particular handling your forms. Have a look at www.clicktale.com

Broken Links between pages or image links that go to the wrong place will not inspire confidence in the potential customer.

Poor Quality images of products will not show them to their best advantage or entice people to buy.

These are just some of the reasons visitors may exit your site and seek out your competititor. It is important to have your usability testing done by someone who is not already familiar with the site as they will pick up navigation issues for example. A new user will really tell you how intuative or easy it is to buy from your site.

Remember too that webusers can be fickle and unforgiving as they scan for the results they want. They also have increasingly high expectations making them harder to satisfy with sub standard websites. Don’t make them search too hard or make them fill endless forms or they will quickly loose interest. Website usability testing finds out how much time users might take to search for a particular product or item on your site; what are the difficulties faced by them while conducting the search; do they face any problems related to your website design and features, such as navigating from one web page to the other, opening up links, downloading images or content, and the like.

In a nutshell, website usability testing is an approach to calculate the ease-of-use quotient of your site. Here at SIM we have perfected a system of usability testing that has been invaluable to our clients. Give us your target audience demographic and we can arrange for comprehensive testing of your site with a full report.

Based on the website usability testing analysis, you can then apply the changes and correct glitches and errors in the knowledge that you will be improving your customer’s experience.

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In search engines results pages (SERPs) a single listing for a popular phrase will bring you traffic if it ranks high enough. However, having a second indented listing just under that main listing doesn’t just stand to bring you 100% more traffic, it could bring you as much as 200% more traffic. Its all to do with the way that people view the search results, fixate on ceratin points and click through to your website.

Studies of indented listings using heap maps show that where the primary listing is popular the indented listing is more popular, it gets more fixation points and more clicks than the primary listing does. You don’t have to have a number 1 primary listing in order to get an indented listing, you can get this listing at positions 8 & 9, at positions 4 & 5 or positions 23 and 24, it doesn’t make a difference where your primary listing appears. You want the highest possible listing, of course you do but my point is that you don’t have to be number one to achieve an indented listing.

An added bonus is that double listings can also help to increase your ranking positions and push you up the search engines results pages.

How do you get a double listing?

The primary listing is the page on your site that is deemed most relevant to the search phrase and the second listing is the page that is deemed second most important – the key is to find out which is the second best page for that phrase. Double listing’s only show when both pages are ranked on the same SERPs page so – SEO TIP – change your preferences on Google to show 100 results in the SERPs (the default is 10 per page), use the ‘find’ function to locate your website and see if you have a double listing showing. If you do then the second URL is the one you need to work on to strengthen the optimisation for the search phrase you are using.

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