A good user experience (UX) is essential for the success of every website: The better the user experience, the higher chance you have to generate conversions. At the same time, positive user signals like low bounce rate and high dwell times lead to better rankings in SERPs.
Ryte can be very helpful when you want to optimize key aspects of the user experience on your website long term.
Users and search engines love fast pages. Anyone surfing the Internet wants to find the desired information or products as fast as possible. Pages that take too long to load face the risk of users leaving the page and searching for an alternative website. A DYN study from 2015 showed that in Germany, more than 40% of the respondents look for an alternative website if it takes too long to load. Only 32% wait for a website to load for more than 5 seconds, and a third leaves if it fails to provide any results in 3 seconds.
At the same time, the page speed is also a key ranking factor in Google. Besides ensuring a good user experience, making your page fast also gives an opportunity better rankings since Google rewards sites that have a good usability. Thus, you have a clear advantage over pages that have a poorer user experience.
Ryte makes it very easy for you to check the load times of your website. Simply go to the Zoom Module and select "Load Times" under "Performance".
Figure 1: Load Time report on Ryte
Clicking on the red semicircles ("Very slow") activates the corresponding filter and displays all pages that take 4 to 10 seconds to load.
Figure 2: Use Ryte to identify slow-loading pages
This report enables you to easily find the possible causes of the slow-loading pages. Here, click on "Performance" and select "Compression" after you have activated the filter ("Very slow").
Large data files can also cause websites to load slowly. The browser requires a lot more time to load all the content. One way to solve this problem is by compressing such files. Ryte shows you if your slow pages have already been compressed or not.
Figure 3: Check if your website is compressed
Figure 4: Use Ryte to check the size of a website
Next, you should search for further causes of errors: Start by checking if the slow loading pages are indexable. To do this, go to the "What is indexable" report under "Indexability". This shows you if the website has any pages that should not be indexed by the Google bot. In the example below, measures should be taken to reduce load time.
Figure 5: Use Ryte to check the indexability
If a URL is called and the server cannot find the page, it returns a 4xx status code. The most common error message in this category is the 404 status code – "not found".
Besides a poor user experience, a large number of 404 errors can also lead to difficulties in search engine crawls. At the same time, an accumulation of these errors is often an indication of a website that is poorly maintained, something that can cause users to lose their trust in the website. For webmasters, this means that 404 pages should be avoided as much as possible.
Ryte helps you identify all 404 errors that appear on your website. Simply click on "Status Codes" under "Indexability" to view all the status codes that are returned by the pages on your website. To filter out all 404 errors, click on the red bar labeled "4xx (not found)".
Figure 6: Use Ryte to identify 404 errors
You can then review the listed URLs to see if there are any alternative URLs or updated content to which you can redirect your users. If so, do this using 301 redirects.
Since 404 errors cannot be avoided completely, there are creative options of designing 404 error pages. These enable you to avoid direct bounce rates on faulty pages. For instance, you could offer your users an internal search function in order to enable them to search for alternative content.
Figure 7: Example of a creatively designed 404 error page that has added value for the user
The click path length is a key criterion of ensuring that users arrive at their destination as fast as possible. It is recommended that you ensure that any content on your website can be accessed with four or less clicks from the homepage. The click path length also plays a key role in the indexing. The faster a crawler can go through your website, the more pages on your website it is able to index. If a high number of clicks is required, the crawl budget will be depleted very fast, thus preventing the crawler from indexing the full depth of your website.
Ryte makes it very easy for you to analyze the click path lengths on your website. Simply select "Links" – "Click Path" to view all click path lengths on your website.
Figure 8: Use Ryte to check the click path length
Here, you can also create custom filters: Click on "Add Filter" and select "Clicks from the Homepage (Counter)". Next, select "Equal or more than" in the field below and enter "4". Click on "Save and close" to activate the filter and view all pages that are more than 4 clicks away from the homepage.
Figure 9: Identify all pages that are more than 4 clicks from the homepage
Websites that contain missing or faulty image files result in a poor user experience. Images are used on websites as content elements or click buttons. If these elements cannot be loaded, the ability to use the website is compromised. You should therefore try and make sure that none of the images on your websites fails to load or is inaccessible. Here as well, Ryte can be very useful. Click on "Static Content" -> "Images" and select "Status Codes". This gives you a direct overview of all image URLs that are inaccessible.
Figure 10: Use Ryte to check inaccessible images
Ensure a positive user experience on your website by avoiding obstacles such as faulty images, broken pages, or long click paths. Ryte makes this very easy for you. Your website visitors will be grateful!
Published on 08/23/2016 by Eva Wagner.
Eva is an experienced content marketer. Until May 2018 she was a member of online marketing team at Ryte. Using her creativity and the knowledge of current topics, she was responsible for the German Ryte Magazine and the Ryte Wiki. She also organized Ryte’s presence at major trade fairs such as the dmexco in Cologne.