If you’re starting up a business, publishing a website is a necessity. Much more than that, knowing common website errors and how to fix them is very important to growing a profitable online business pretty fast.
The world is becoming more and more integrated online. Without a quality website, your business could lose conversions and potential customers. Luckily, you don’t have to be a web developer to know how to optimize your website.
You can easily fix a few common website errors to improve your website’s user experience, content, ranking on search engines, and overall performance.
How To Find Most Common Website Errors (And How You Can Fix Them)
Common Website Errors 1: 404 Response Codes
A 404 error code pops up when a user lands on a page that no longer exists. If you’ve recently changed your website’s overall structure and content, it would be a good idea to check to see how many error pages you have. 404 errors aren’t good for customer experience, and can make your website seem unreliable and untrustworthy.
How to fix Error 404: You can identify 404 error pages a number of ways. I usually use an SEO crawler tool like Screaming Frog or Google Search Console to find them. Once you’ve identified and made a list of your 404 errors, go into the backend and change those URLs to 301 redirects.
Common Website Errors 2: Missing Meta Titles and Descriptions
When your business’s website pops up in the Google search results page, it will display a page title and short description of the page. This is called the meta title and meta description. If you haven’t specifically written or included a meta title and description, it will default to the main title of the page with the first few lines of content.
The problem with this kind of website error is that having all your meta titles and descriptions on default is risky. There is a certain character limit for both the title and description. If you exceed that limit, words will get caught off. Keep in mind that this could be one of the first interactions someone has with your brand. If your title and description are just a jumble of auto-text, people are less likely to engage with your brand.
How to fix missing meta titles and descriptions: You need to check all of your website pages for any missing (as well as odd-looking) meta title and description data. Again, most website crawler tools will be able to extract all of your website’s meta data and create reports for you. From there, write your own meta titles and descriptions. You can put this information in the backend and might need help from a developer. I personally like the Yoast SEO plugin which allows me to easily edit the meta data on every page of my website.
Common Website Errors 3: Confusing Website Page Depth and Hierarchy
When running your business website, it is crucial to ask how easy and user-friendly your site’s navigation is.
It seems pretty basic, but it can greatly enhance your website. It can be a big problem for an eCommerce website if it takes too many clicks for visitors to get from the home page to the product page.
The flow of your website should be easy to understand and use. It becomes a problem when there are just too many pages that aren’t organized by level of importance.
How to fix confusing webpage depth and hierarchy: Create a report that lists the Crawl Depth for each of your URLs.
The Crawl Depth is the number of clicks it takes to get from the homepage to that specific URL. For example, my product page would have a Crawl Depth of 2 because I clicked on the homepage which took me to the collections page, and I clicked again on the collections page to get to the product page.
You can manually create a Crawl Depth Report or use a SEO crawler tool to generate one. After you have a list of your URLs and Crawl Depths, make sure that your most important pages have a low Crawl Depth, and that your least important pages have a high Crawl Depth.
If none of these is the case, you might want to consider redesigning and restructuring your website. This is what our topnotch digital marketing agency can help you achieve at an affordable price.
Common Website Errors 4: Slow Site Speed
Site speed is something you can’t ignore on your website. The world’s internet is becoming faster and faster, and people are expecting to get results and answers fast. If your website is loading slow, users will bounce before giving your business a chance.
Aside users bouncing every time they visit your website, search engine, especially Google will also penalize your site byde-ranking it.
How to fix slow site speed: Use Google Search Console and the Google Developers’ PageSpeed Insights Test tools to analyze your website’s site speed.
Common Website Errors 5: Weird URL Parameters
Some websites have URL addresses that contain unusual parameters and characters in them. Don’t do that!
Google has a harder time crawling URLs that have random letters, numbers, and punctuation signs. Because of this, it will be difficult for these URLs to rank on Google. Additionally, weird letters in parameters tend to confuse visitors. It will be extremely hard for them to navigate around your website. These visitors will eventually get frustrated and will be more susceptible to leave without completing a conversion.
How to fix weird URL Parameters: Create a list of all your URL parameters in Screaming Frog, Google Analytics, or Google Search Console. As you look at your list, identify parameters that don’t have a clear path and description. Rewrite and replace parameters, as well as any others that have weird symbols, letters, or numbers that don’t make sense. Go into the backend of your website and make the changes and implementations.
An Optimized Site is a Successful Website
There are many other common website errors to look for when optimizing a business website. However, hopefully these can help you get started. Remember that developing a website takes a lot of time. Don’t expect to have a high-quality, amazing, high-ranking website at the start. But with lots of effort and determination, you’ll have a successful site in no time!