If you want to retain new users to your website, it’s important to optimize your website for engagement. When readers stay on your website longer, they are more likely to actually read your content, understand your niche and take action. In this episode I’m sharing 7 ways to improve engagement on your website.
New GA4 metric, but we’ve always wanted our readers to engage with our website, to take action and to stay on the website longer. One common goal with our clients when they redesign their website is to increase engagement and pages per visit. While website design has a lot to do with that, there is also a lot you can do on your own to help increase engagement.
Use animations to draw attention
With all of the noise that is out there, it is really hard to get users to pay attention. Using simple forms of animation will help readers pay attention and hopefully take action. Some subtle animations I like are:
Grow spotlight subscribe feature – gets you to stop your scroll, read, and most of the time gets people to subscribe
Using icons and making them do something on hover.
Limit the options
This one might seem counterintuitive, but limiting the amount of options you give your reader to do will increase engagement. Mostly what I mean by this is, reducing the amount of pop ups (email, Facebook, cookies, privacy, etc.) on the first load.
But, don’t be afraid to use Google friendly popup/modals when you’re targeting someone who has visited a few pages and you have a big juicy offer to share with them that provides real value.
Another thing to think about when limiting options is less is more in your navigation menu. Your recipe index should be your best friend for SEO and users.
Use a jump to top button in the footer only – not on the side of the page.
Enhance the styles of your blog posts
This is one of my favorite ways to increase engagement. We focus a lot of our time and energy on all of your pages when we work with clients in a website redesign. But the page that needs the most attention is the page that has your blog post! This is where you have the most opportunity to engage your readers.
- Use blocks to break up content and draw attention.
- Make sure you have interesting images, not just the same type of finished photo over and over.
- Create custom patterns for affiliate products you recommend.
- Style your FAQ block and use accordion style.
- Add your opt-in directly in the content. Grow.me is a great example or there are custom ways to inject your opt-in in. You can even target the opt-in based on the category the post is in.
Focus on the recipe card!!!
The recipe card is the gold of your blog post. This is where your readers are going to and it is what they are looking for. So we want to maximize what we are doing with the recipe card.
Include links to other posts, products, etc. right in the recipe card.
Experiment with an opt-in right in your recipe card or right above or below
Make sure the design is engaging.
Add your site URL or related posts to the recipe print page.
Optimize your comment form
Users rarely make it to the comments, but when they do its to rate your recipe. Knowing that, we want to capitalize on our comment form.
Make sure you allow for email opt-ins when a comment is left. We love the Comment Edit Pro plugin for that!
Encourage users to leave a comment or rating using a different type of block in your post.
Utilize your post header
This is the top most part of your blog post and is very underutilized by food bloggers.
Leverage total social services in the post header to provide additional social trust and validation to the reader. If there are less than 500, don’t show the total count.
Limit what you include in post meta. You need author, date published and last updated (or a combo) and jump to recipe.
Do not put your print button by the jump to recipe card.
☕️ Add a buy me a coffee link to encourage your dedicated readers to support you