881 - Make your site a visitor magnet: Tom talks How To Critique Your Own Website - Screw The Commute

881 – Make your site a visitor magnet: Tom talks How To Critique Your Own Website

Today, we're going to talk about how to critique your own website. I've, oh geez, I lost track a long time ago, but have critiqued over 10,000 websites. So I'm going to tell you the way I do it and the things that you can do. And then also, I'm going to give you a method to get other people to critique your website.

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Screw The Commute Podcast Show Notes Episode 881

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[00:23] Tom's introduction to How To Critique Your Own Website

[01:20] Get an overall feel for the website first

[04:50] Use a good color scheme

[06:36] Don't have “disappointing” links and use anchor text

[12:20] Use good graphics that are in focus

[16:04] Make sure your site is responsive for cell phones and tablets

Entrepreneurial Resources Mentioned in This Podcast

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Email Tom: Tom@ScrewTheCommute.com

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Related Episodes

Keyword Research – https://screwthecommute.com/1/

Website Readability – https://screwthecommute.com/312/

Website Usability – https://screwthecommute.com/313/

YouTube Hack End Fast – https://screwthecommute.com/880/

More Entrepreneurial Resources for Home Based Business, Lifestyle Business, Passive Income, Professional Speaking and Online Business

I discovered a great new headline / subject line / subheading generator that will actually analyze which headlines and subject lines are best for your market. I negotiated a deal with the developer of this revolutionary and inexpensive software. Oh, and it's good on Mac and PC. Go here: http://jvz1.com/c/41743/183906

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Episode 881 – How To Critique Your Own Website
[00:00:08] Welcome to Screw the Commute. The entrepreneurial podcast dedicated to getting you out of the car and into the money, with your host, lifelong entrepreneur and multimillionaire, Tom Antion.

[00:00:24] Hey everybody, it's Tom here with episode 881 of Screw the Commute podcast. Today, we're going to talk about how to critique your own website. I've, oh geez, I lost track a long time ago, but have critiqued over 10,000 websites. So I'm going to tell you the way I do it and the things that you can do. And then also, I'm going to give you a method to get other people to critique your website. Now, if you don't want to do all that, I'm happy to do it for you. It's only 497 bucks. I'll do a complete website critique for you. All right. Hope you didn't miss episode 880. That was a YouTube hack about ending your videos fast. Why? The end part of your video is just as important as hooking people at the beginning. All right, grab a copy of our automation e-book at screwthecommute.com/automatefree and check out my mentor program at GreatInternetMarketingTraining.com.

[00:01:20] All right, let's get into this. Now, most of these are in no particular order. However, one of the first things that I do is I kind of get an overall feel after seeing so darn many websites. I look at a website and I get a feel for is it modern? Is it homemade? What? So that's the first thing. But then the first specific thing I always do is I check the title tag area that's up in the tab of your browser. You hold your mouse over it and it'll show you your title tag.

[00:01:52] Each page of your site should have unique title tags and I can tell, like instantly, if the people have no idea what they're doing, or if the web person that made the site for them has no idea what they're doing. So title tags I have episodes on all this, this kind of stuff. Uh, but anyway, you should check episode one. Screwthecommute.com/1 for keyword research. Because again, you can do the best job on your website, but if nobody finds it, then you're screwed. All right. So, uh, keyword placement is also an episode I have, uh, and what you do with these. But that's one of the critical things because it can be the fanciest website on earth, but if it can't be found, uh, unless you have other ways to drive traffic, then you're kind of screwed. Okay. You should have a clickable logo to your homepage. That's a standard thing people like, if they get lost on your website, they can click the logo and it takes them to the home page for a fresh start. Uh, now there's two episodes I definitely want you to listen to. Is episode 313 is on usability of your website? This is like the navigation and does things make sense to move around your website and find things that they wanted? You know, I won. I beat out three other million dollar websites in Inc. Magazine's contest, and I got best of the web because the panel of CEOs that were checking these websites says, well, mine, I could they could navigate it easily and they could find what they wanted fast.

[00:03:32] They didn't care about all the bells and whistles and all the craziness that your IT geeks put in there because they can, but that that screws over you and the user. So listen to episode 313. Screwthecommute.com/313 on usability. And another thing I look at is episode 312 that goes in depth on this is readability of your website. And these are things like do you have too much centering which screams, you know, too much centering of text screams amateurish. It just screams with a megaphone. Amateur. Now of course, certain things can be centered beautiful. But listen to episode 312 about readability and you'll see centering justification. This is how the text is aligned. Yeah, you should have. Justified left, ragged right on online and in ebooks. Don't try to justify it like a book with, you know, sharp edges on both sides. It'll look stupid. Totally stupid. Also, your line width has to do with readability. The wider the line and the smaller the text, the less readable it is. So that's all in episode 312. I look at the color scheme to make sure it kind of matches the person's what they're about, and that it's reasonable, not like a circus tent. I look at the alignment. Does the text touch borders? That's another thing that screams amateur homemade. Uh, and the things line up on the page.

[00:05:11] You know, I see so many people trying to make their own website and just things are just plopped in every which way, and it bugs your eyes out. I look at consistency. You know, a lot of people copy and paste text from different sources that they have created over time, and then all the fonts are different. Every every place you go, even in the same page, the fonts are different. So again, that's screams, uh, amateurish. Now, a lot of people are not going to pick this apart like I would, but they get a feeling. Is your website homemade? Is it professional or is it amateurish? And these are the kind of little things that, you know, give people a message even though they're not saying, oh, well, I can't believe the guy did, you know, used full justification instead of ragged, right. I mean, they're not going to think like that. They're just going to say, ah, this just doesn't feel right. And they'll leave. You don't want that. I look for, uh, calls to action, like, what do you want people to do? You know, at the end of a long blog post, should they call you? Should they email you? Should they go to the next blog post and read it? Uh, should they watch a video? You know, tell them what to do. They'll do it if you tell them and make it easy to do. Don't forget, at the end, I'm going to show you how to get other people to critique your website.

[00:06:33] Okay? Uh, so that's calls to action. Then I look for disappointing links. Well, what does that mean? Well, if you tell people a link is going somewhere and it doesn't immediately appear to them that the link went where you said. They don't trust you. You disappointed them and they leave. A lot of people do this when they say, oh, here, get this freebie. And then they got a big sales letter before you can get to the freebie. Guess what? People will just back out of that. They'll say you tried to trick them. Bait and switch. You know. So disappointing links don't have them on your your site. Now anchor text. Anchor text is the text that's clickable. And underneath the anchor text could be a really humongous long link. And there's times to use it and there's times to not use it. It depends on if you think people are going to print out a web page of yours and take it to their boss or something like that. So. So learn about anchor text and use it appropriately. Footers I see a lot of websites have no privacy policy. Nothing at the bottom, no contact at the bottom, no, you know, operating times, no terms of service, no privacy policy. So you can take advantage of a footer area for stuff that you're supposed to have and you need to have, especially if you want to advertise your site. The landing page has to have terms of service privacy policies on it, or you won't get the ad accepted in most reputable places.

[00:08:13] Okay. So footers. Now your opt in boxes again, these aren't in any particular order. If I see an opt in box, hit me in the face, I'll critique it first. But anyway. Opt in boxes do they work? So I usually go ahead and put my stuff in and see what happens. Do I get what I was promised, and so forth? However, most people you know say, sign up for my newsletter. Well that's worthless. That was good. 30 years ago, you know, I had I just celebrated my 30th year online when the commercial internet started in 1994. That's when I started. And then people would sign up for anything but that, you know, now you've got to pretty much pay them to sign up for free stuff, you know, so your opt in boxes, do they work? Is there loads of benefits, uh, associated that the point where they have to put their email in is their privacy little tiny privacy link. Even though they don't click on it, it makes them feel more comfortable. Do you put things like, we hate spam as much as you do, so you're kind of sending a message. We won't spam you to death if you sign up. So your opt in boxes, your social media icons. I see so many sites, they they still have Google Plus, which was defunct a couple of years ago, and it's on there and uh, the, the other ones, Facebook and Twitter, which is now X and it's all old stuff that and it goes to the wrong place or it goes nowhere.

[00:09:45] So don't do that. If you're going to have social media links on your site or icons, make sure they go to appropriate place and make sure that if they do go to an appropriate place that you have been working that social media site, what good is it to click them over to a Facebook thing that you haven't updated since Superman was a baby? See, so leave it off if you're not actively using those social medias, okay? Photos and graphics, well make sure they're the appropriate resolution for screen viewing. So if you just take a picture on your iPhone or Android, it's probably at high resolution and screens are low resolution. Even though the picture looks nice, it might take three days to load. If you just take it off your phone and shove it up there. Now there are plugins for WordPress That'il I think one's called smash it or something. Uh, crush it. That will make it appropriate for your website, but if you just load up big things, your site will never load. And then Google came out years ago. Year, uh, probably five or more years ago, and said if your site doesn't load instantly, you're never going to see a high ranking ever. So don't do that. Don't put up gigantic graphics that are inappropriate for them. And also put captions, captions.

[00:11:13] See people, they've done retinal studies where where people's eyes look on a website. And so they look at your graphics first, then they look at the caption, which should be salesy to get people to want to read the text, okay, the graphics caption and then text. They never get to the text. If you have an unrelated picture. This is another thing I see. People have this, you know, a picture on their home page, a giant picture of a field with a big tree in it. And I'm saying, what does that have to do with your you're selling bingo supplies. All right. And and they say, oh, well, that means you can be a unique individual and you're, you know, you're out there among the, the smaller people. I mean, they just come up with these ridiculous things in their mind that just confuse the heck out of the visitor who has no idea what you're talking about or why that stupid graphic is there, say has nothing to do with bingo supplies or whatever you do say it's only in your mind you can't, you know, do stuff like that. That's in just in your mind. Okay, so photos, graphics, make sure they're, you know, they're not fuzzy and 90 years old now, I get teased a lot for older pictures that I use over and over again, but I'm known as a cut up and a, you know, a guy, you know, and and I even quit using one that I used for like 20 years.

[00:12:40] All right. But make sure that it's in focus, all right? And they can see you make sure it sends a message. If you're a speaker, have, you know, some you know you can have headshots. Sure. Yeah. But have some action shots of you in front of crowds and big crowds and little crowds and whatever you're trying to get for speaking engagements, don't just have a headshot and say, hey, I'm a great speaker. Well, show it. You show videos. Also, there's another thing is I'll see a video on your site that's hosted on YouTube. Well, that is just pitiful. Uh, see, we first of all, we love YouTube. Absolutely love YouTube to get people from YouTube and send them to my site or my or your site or whoever where you're going. But once they're there, YouTube is always going to make it easy to go back to YouTube. They're going to put your competitors up there at the end of the video, probably say so. No, we use YouTube to drive people to the website. Then videos on your website should be hosted somewhere like Vimeo or Amazon S3 with your own video player, which WordPress gives you. Now you can get fancier ones and then they can't easily go back. We want a one way valve from YouTube to your site, and then we want them to stay on your site and you control the end screens and what they see, and they can't easily click back to YouTube. So so that's a major mistake I see all the time.

[00:14:17] Um, testimonials. Some guy just came out with a book because he got a letter from the Federal Trade Commission that his testimonials were not compliant. Well, yeah, they're after years of telling people to, uh, what to do on on testimonials. The Federal Trade Commission, I guess, is finally taking some action. So you got to learn the Federal Trade Commission rules on testimonials and make sure you're compliant. And then when I get through all of that stuff. Right. Uh, then I. Well, one thing I tell people is these, these home pages that are just, you know, ten miles long and have everything which an uninformed website owner thinks. Oh, that's the cool way to do things now. Well, it might be cool, but it's not helping you at all being found. In fact, it's hurting you because your site does not look substantial. Another thing that all the search engines look at is the overall number of pages that you have to see that you have substantial numbers of pages that are different. You know, they'll look at your title tags and make sure the pages are different and they give good quality content. And so if you dump it all on one long page, you're never going to see the light of day. You know, it's just the that's why I own the the website domain name killyourwebdesigner.com. I should have developed it years ago, because I've had hundreds and hundreds of horror stories of web designers making things look cool and you're all impressed and showing your friends, but nobody else on earth is ever going to find it because of the way it was constructed.

[00:16:02] Say so. Don't do that. So after I get done with all that stuff, then I switch to a cell phone and look at your site on a cell phone and a tablet and you say, oh my God, it looked great on the on this giant monitor of mine, but I can't even read it on a cell phone. Now, here's your test on a cell phone, because your your themes of your website should be what we call responsive. That means they they adjust, uh, automatically for cell phones and tablets. Okay. So if, if you want to find out is my thing responsive, open it up on your phone. And if you have to squinch with your fingers, you know, to make it bigger to read, it ain't responsive. You know, you're you're really looking bad because over half for years, over half of websites stuff is done on cell phones and tablets. So you look terrible to people and it might look so beautiful on your giant 27 inch monitor. But guess what? You look stupid to the rest of the world. So you got to get responsive themes. All right, so I promise. So if you do even half of that stuff, you're going to improve the heck out of your website. Remember I'll do it for you for 497 bucks and I'll have that's just the front end stuff.

[00:17:28] My, uh, if you use my service, I have my tech guy look at the back end of your website to see how screwed up it is back there. You can't believe the things these web people do to you. And you have no idea. See, they they know you don't know what you're doing. Many of them don't know what they're doing. They just can make it look pretty. But that could kill you with being hacked and looking stupid and security vulnerabilities. Even you don't even recognize slow loading. All of these things, these bloated codes they put in there. See, so we also do that for you too. I do the front end and the tech guy does the back end for 97. Just let me know. Email me if you want it at Tom@screwthecommute.com. All right. So I promised to tell you how to get other people to, uh, to critique your website. See, because like I said, it's really hard to create to critique your own website because you're too close to things. I don't care how good you think you are. If you did all the stuff on here that I just talked about. Yeah, you're probably going to improve your website, but still, you're going to miss things because you're too close to it. So the method I, I it's kind of it's got a little bit of a funny catch to it here, but, uh, I tell people, get a person that knows, you know, they might know you and, and, but they don't really know what you do or know your website or anything like that and get them to come over to your office and put a chair there, give them a tablet and a pencil or pen and tell and get a video camera.

[00:19:14] Uh, and also a baseball bat. All right. So you have them look at your website and try to navigate it and to write down any things they don't understand or what they're trying to accomplish. And they can't do. They can't figure it out where to go. Write it all down. Now, if you get the urge to jump in and point something out to them on how to do it. Grab that baseball bat and hit yourself in the head with it, because you won't be there when they're in the middle of the night trying to get some information from you, and they can't figure it out, and then take their comments and then go back and fix them. Do it again with somebody else, and your website will be way, way, way better and reach your goals with it much faster. All right. That's my story. I'm sticking to it. Go out there and creek your critique your website if you want my help. Tom@screwthecommute.com and greatinternetmarketingtraining.com. That's included in my mentor program. All right, we'll catch you on the next episode. See you later.