So you've asked for a yearend report on your website, and you don't like what you see. Numbers are falling off? Conversions are plummeting? Core audience is bouncing off the site? No new leads?

If you find yourself in that situation, or you're not where you need to be, chances are very good your website is sleeping. (Let's hope it's not dead...) You can take charge and turn things around by giving your creative and digital teams some productive goals.

The following site checklist, including some simple fixes, should wake your site up and give it some energy.

1. Is it usable?

Usability is a big umbrella. Everything in this article (and more) falls under usability. It sounds ridiculous to even say this... but here goes: If your site isn't usable, it won't be used!

Most experts and usability studies will suggest the following high-level best-practices for usability:

  • Use headings to mark up important topics (preferably with your keywords)
  • Use bullet points so people can scan
  • Add search to your site, and make sure it works very well
  • Make your navigation the best it can be
  • And please, please, don't use miniscule font sizes!

2. Is it responsive?

Few things are more frustrating to users of small wireless devices than scrolling every which way on a website designed for 960 pixel width. Add insult to injury by making them zoom in and out, and you've got a recipe for the back button—off your site. Responsive design is still in its infancy, but there are a few key takeaways:

  • Make some designs for different screen widths
  • Don't get hung up on specific devices; think instead about being flexible
  • Graphics should resize in a pleasing way
  • Text should reflow to be readable, with comfortable line lengths
  • Keeping the design simple and clean will allow your site to respond better

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image of Matt Gagnon

Matthew Gagnon is an interactive developer with INK, a full-service advertising and marketing agency.

LinkedIn: Matt Gagnon