Why is it that your competitor consistently gets more visitors to their site, more praise, and more sales? Why does every blog they publish receive dozens of comments? It may be frustrating, but often your competitor is simply doing a few things better than you are.
Here are some of the most common reasons why your visitors prefer your competitor’s website, and how you can quickly change this around.
Their Web Pages Load Faster
Let’s start with the basics. If your website pages load too slowly, you will lose visitors. It’s as simple as that. No one is going to hang around to wait. They are too impatient for that. If you don’t believe me, check out this Kissmetrics infographic (and about a million other resources that make the case for faster-loading websites).
Site load speed has a huge impact on the user experience—but it’s also something that you can easily remedy. Is your website loading fast enough? You probably have a fairly good idea about that already. If not, head to Google’s PageSpeed Insights. Just enter your URL into this free tool and you will instantly see what Google thinks of your website’s speed for both desktop and mobile. It will also provide some helpful suggestions for how to improve it. And if you don’t know how to implement the changes yourself, an experienced web designer can do the job for you.
They Are More Social
If your competitor’s website is popular with visitors, there’s a good chance that they are more social than you. Companies get involved in social media for various reasons. Some companies do it purely as a way to share their content. Others do it to increase their social signals for SEO purposes.
Whatever the reasons, the fact is inescapable: People spend a lot of time on social media. If they come across your competitor’s content on a regular basis while browsing Facebook, they are likely to engage with it (if it’s any good). As well as reading your competitor’s updates, they may also fill in surveys or get answers to their questions directly via Facebook if your competitor uses it as a way to provide customer service. And that will eventually drive more of them back to the website and blog.
That’s part of the reason why your competitor’s blog always has so many more comments than yours. And when people read the blogs, they are encouraged to share the content with their own social networks via the social buttons after each blog post. This is not a hard system to implement, and it can dramatically increase engagement in your content. Of course, all this is only going to work if their content is worth all that effort.
Their Content Is More Useful, Funny, Comprehensive, etc
Yes, we’re back to content, which is one thing that can really make a difference to your site’s popularity. If you want people to enjoy using your site, you have to provide them with a reason to be there in the first place. Sure, they may turn up to purchase your products, but content can help to drive them there in the first place and keep them there for longer.
And at the same time, content can demonstrate that you are an authority, show your personality, encourage visitors to engage with your brand, solve their problems, and build trust. You can accomplish all that and more with a great blog. Read your competitor’s blog. What do they write about? Is it engaging? If you can do the same, then do it. Look at the blogs that have the most comments and most social shares, and start by talking about the same topics.
But make your blogs better. Make them longer and more authoritative. Provide more useful resources. Solve more problems. Your competitor has already shown that people want to read about these topics. So provide them with even more. A blog can help to position you as an authority, and that will increase trust. So what are you waiting for?
Their Site Is Easier to Navigate
Another design issue that always comes up is navigation. More people will enjoy using your website if it is easy to find their way around, so make sure your designer improves your navigation. Don’t try to do anything clever here. Follow the standard practice of a navigation bar across the top of the page, and plan your site carefully so that you group your services and products into easy-to-find categories.
Your aim should be to let visitors find exactly what they looking for in a couple of clicks. Add a search bar in the top corner so that visitors can hop onto it when they want to find something and get taken exactly where they want to go. If visitors find your site frustrating to navigate, they are not going to waste their time on it. After all, we already know that they have a perfectly good alternative option in your competitor’s site.
Their Mobile Site Is Better
Is your mobile website slick, responsive, and easy to view? Can visitors click buttons with ease? Can they find your content and share it? Do the pages load quickly? Basically, look at all the above points, and then make sure your mobile website fulfills all of the requirements. Many of your visitors may only visit your site on their cellphones and tablets, and they will expect a good experience. Failing to provide them with one will make your business look behind the times. It suggests that you don’t care about the mobile experience.
This is going to hurt you.
What is your competitor’s mobile experience like? Probably reasonable at least. So make yours better. If you have not got a responsive design in place, do that now. Then use it yourself, and get others to use it. Work out how it could be better, and improve it. How could you make it more intuitive, more user-friendly? The world is going mobile, so make sure you don’t get left behind.
All Of This Is Easy
Don’t sit around complaining that your competitor gets all the glory with their website. Find out what they are doing that you are not, and then make your website even better. The thing about all of the above is that they are relatively easy to do. Especially things like increasing page load times and getting a good responsive site set up. Developing a reputation for great content will take longer, but it won’t be hard to do if you really focus on it.
So stop complaining, and start improving. Soon it will be your competitors checking out your website to find out what you are doing so right.