One of our most popular blog posts is ‘Better SEO In Less Than An Hour’ but almost six years later, there are other things we think are as important for making your site great (in less than an hour).
So mark off an hour in your calendar and tackle one (or some) of the items below… and we guarantee your website will be happier.
Reduce image sizes (and compress anything else possible).
Estimated Time: 15-45 minutes
Usually image and video files are taking up more room than you realize. Websites like videosmaller.com can be used to make videos 10-50% smaller without any noticeable quality loss online. Usually there are multiple images on your site that you forgot to resize before upload that can be compressed. Here are some tools that’ll let you do the job in bulk: https://mashable.com/2013/10/29/image-compressors/#fwSRDY1wAPqb
Smaller image files does two things: one it makes pages load faster for your visitors and mean you’ll keep your web hosting bill low over time. Compressing the images on my site saved me 236 MB of space!
Force site to load in HTTPS.
Estimated Time: 15 minutes
By adding a secure certificate to your site (check if your host is a LetsEncrypt provider and you could get one that renews itself yearly free!) and then make your pages load in HTTPS. We held off on doing this to GiftMDI.com (our ecommerce site) for awhile and when we did our Google Page Insights score jumped up 15 points immediately. (Do a before HTTPS and after test for yourself here: https://developers.google.com/speed/pagespeed/insights/)
Write unique titles and descriptions for all your pages.
Estimated Time: 5 minutes per page
Your page title and description are what shows up in search engine results, and seeing this allows people to decide if they should click on your website, or one of the other options. You can customize the title and description for pages, not just for Google but Facebook too. WordPress has tools like All In One SEO and Yoast SEO for such tasks… and whatever website software you use will likely allow you to customize this as well for each of your pages.
Make as mobile friendly as possible.
Estimated time: 30-60 minutes
Over half of most website visitors are on a mobile device. How does your website work on a mobile device? Google has a testing tool that you can run and gives you specific recommendations: https://search.google.com/test/mobile-friendly
Find and fix broken links.
Estimated time: 30-60 minutes
Broken links are not just a bummer for search engines but for people too. You might have made a typo or you might have forgotten you changed a page title/link from /about to /about-us. Use a broken link checker (like this one: http://www.brokenlinkcheck.com/) to find and fix any broken links, which will make your site work better.
Make sure your site hasn’t been hacked.
Estimated time: 5 – 15 minutes
By making a Google account and registering your site in Search Console, you can find any security issues your site may have. Bonus is it will alert you when there are issues in future.
Update your software (if applicable).
Estimated Time: 5 minutes
Keeping your website well running and secure means updating software regularly, especially if you run WordPress. If you don’t want to do this yourself, we offer a very affordable updating service. But for real, it’s really important to keep your software updated. We’ve unhacked enough websites to know that 100% of the time, when we asked the person when the site was last updated, they couldn’t tell us.
All this to say there’s always SOMETHING you can do to improve your site… so take an hour and do what you can… and imagine how great your site would be if you took one hour a week and worked on making it amazing.