Imagine this: Every second, three new websites spring into existence. This relentless growth translates into fierce competition for consumer attention, posing a significant challenge for businesses striving to carve out a distinctive online presence in an ever-more crowded digital marketplace.
Whether a mom-and-pop shop or a major corporation, differentiation will be key to success. While a unique design and compelling content help drive shoppers through those “digital front doors,” another component is even more critical for keeping them there: website performance. A website’s performance is pivotal to improving everything from user experience to conversion rates.
Unfortunately, very few businesses pay attention to website performance beyond the apparent indicators like high bounce or low conversion rates. Even then, they may chalk it up to other problems (i.e., unpersuasive copy, unappealing design, poor targeting, etc.). Investing time in thoroughly analyzing your site’s performance can reveal critical issues that, once identified, can be readily resolved.
For this reason, among many others, conducting a WordPress website audit with greater regularity is becoming increasingly important.
Identifying Site Shortcomings and Unfulfilled Expectations
A WordPress website audit is just as it sounds — the analysis of your website to determine its “friendliness” in terms of experience, security, usability, search engine optimization, and more. Think of it as checking under the hood of your website to fix any components that are no longer in good working condition and make sure it’s running just as it should.
Take something like page load speed, for example. An audit will tell you how quickly the pages on your site load. Should the audit find an issue, it may be a matter of optimizing images, minifying cascading style sheets (CSS), or leveraging browser caching to boost load times. This will help improve WordPress performance and streamline content delivery, making your site more engaging to users.
With more than 55% of website traffic coming from mobile devices, a WordPress audit can also reveal how well your site performs on these devices and identify specific design issues that could be getting in the way. Optimizations may involve employing a more responsive design or mobile-specific speed improvements to ensure the site performs well on all browsers and devices while delivering a uniform user experience.
Then, there’s the matter of user experience. With an audit, you get a better idea of how content layout, navigation, design, responsiveness, and other factors negatively impact how consumers interact with your website. Redesigning the interface may be all that’s necessary for WordPress performance tuning and giving users the experience that they’re looking for. The same can be said for changing content structure.
Identifying Site Vulnerabilities and Missed Objectives
When conducting a WordPress audit, it’s important to move beyond the basics and identify any additional vulnerabilities that may pose a serious problem for your website — chief among them security, and that’s when a WordPress security audit comes in handy. Though most audits include this feature, a WordPress security audit examines the site’s vulnerability to attacks and security breaches.
Even an old and outdated plug-in or theme can become problematic, as it may contain a known gateway to hackers. Updating plug-ins, themes, and WordPress core helps make the site more secure. Still, you may also need to implement security best practices, review user permissions, and assess current file management processes.
That’s not all, however. Another valuable component of the process will be the WordPress SEO audit, which can get you closer to achieving your website’s objectives. During a WordPress SEO audit, a comparison will be made between the site’s search engine friendliness and SEO best practices to derive insights into where you can improve.
Suggestions include changing meta tags, enhancing content quality, and ensuring proper indexing. Implementing strategies involving proper keyword usage, optimizing page titles and descriptions, and incorporating internal links will also be on the table, as each one can increase visibility and bolster your search ranking — which in and of itself can answer the question of why do a website audit.
Other components of the audit include hosting and server performance, plug-in and theme analysis, database efficiency, and so on. In fact, an assessment of your plug-ins and themes can tell you whether removing unnecessary plug-ins or switching to a more efficient theme could improve WordPress performance.
Putting WordPress Audit Reports to Good Use
Once you’ve conducted the audit, attention can turn to using the insights to improve WordPress performance. To do this, it often entails the following:
1. Prioritize and plan.
Start by prioritizing the issues based on their potential impact and complexity in arriving at a resolution. Then, create a plan for addressing these issues, focusing first on quick wins that could immediately affect performance, user experience, and conversion rates.
2. Implement technical fixes.
3. Review and update content.
Based on the WordPress audit, update the website’s content for better SEO and user engagement. This could include revising meta descriptions, optimizing headlines, and ensuring all content is relevant to consumers and current to your business.
These steps will guide the effective implementation of the audit’s recommendations, leading to a more efficient, user-friendly, and search-optimized WordPress website. That’s the long and short of it. It’s also why you do a website audit in the first place — to ensure you’re delivering the experience that consumers have come to expect from all businesses these days.
If you’re wondering where to start with a WordPress audit, the team at Ndevr is here to help. Our company has extensive experience with the platform and can offer a range of strategies to approach WordPress performance tuning best. We also provide tailor-made solutions based on individual audit findings, ensuring that your website gets the attention and specific optimizations it needs to achieve the results you’re looking for.
Reach out to Ndevr today to ensure your website not only meets but exceeds industry standards, positioning it for maximum visibility and engagement in the digital world.