Using DMAIC Methodology to Enhance Information Portals
The Improve Phase primarily deals with the planning and execution of action items based on the analysis done. This is one of key phases after which you will reap real benefits from your initiative. It is very important to set short term goals and long term goals for the website improvement process from an execution perspective.
Some of the activities that can come under short term goals are as follows:
- Immediate implementation of Web 2.0 features that can allow users to interact between them
- Enhancing the look and feel of the website
- Effectively customize the website for the users
- Search Engine Optimization: Basic Activities such as URL construction and Meta Tags
- Search Engine Optimization: Advanced ativities like link buildingand so forth
- Identify additional sources of revenue and implement them
- Online and offline marketing campaigns
- Identify key market drivers and introduce new features related to evolving Web concepts
Figure 4: Online Marketing
Natural Search: Search Engine Optimization
The first and foremost step in a SEO initiative is identifying the right keywords. One of the important tools that can be used to find the right keywords for your website is Google Ad Words Keyword Tool. This tool will give you the approximate Search volume (for the past twelve months) and also the competition for the particular keyword. By using this tool, you can analyze and decide upon the keywords you need to target to rank high on an organic search. Please see Appendix B for a sample set of guidelines that a website should follow from a SEO perspective.
Paid Search: Search Engine Marketing (Ad Words)
Paid Search is nothing but the sponsored links that are displayed on the right-hand side of your search listing page. You pay per click to Google when a user lands on your Ad Words landing page. It is always better to have a customer care page to get the details of the customer. Once you get the details, the sales or marketing team can follow up with the customer and can address their needs personally. But one should be very careful to ensure that, before and after providing the user details, there should be an option of re-directing the user to your website. If this is not done, you just get the user information without even showcasing your website. It will be more impressive if the landing page on your website is related to the searched keyword content.
Natural versus Paid Search Strategy
The key thing is to make sure that for the five most searched keywords in Ad Words, you should make sure that you list in the top three in a natural search. When you reach the top in a search, you can remove those five keywords from Paid Search and then focus on the five next most searched keywords. By doing so, you are continuously enhancing your rank in the Search List and also you are cutting down the cost paid to Google by eliminating those five keywords from Ad Words.
Techniques that will increase traffic to the website
There are some techniques that can be used to improve traffic to the website. Some of them are discussed in the following sections:
You can have a manual refresh button in an information portal (like stock market sites, live scores sites, and such). Although you might have an auto refresh in your website, providing a manual refresh will prompt users to click on it several times. Consider the case that you are watching live scores of a cricket match. Being curious to know what happened in the next ball, you might click the refresh button before the auto refresh happens. This is the case for a single user. Considering this for a million users, this will have an enormous increase in the pageviews. Because the pageviews increase, with visitors being constant, you might have an increased pages/visit. Hence, you can have more stickiness on your website.
Implementing asynchronous calls within a block will have multiple hits on the server. Consider the case that you have an expand-and-collapse option in your website. When a user clicks on the expand button, assume that you are pulling out real-time information from your DB server. In this scenario, each and every click that pulls information from the DB is counted as a Pageview. According to the logic discussed previously, this will increase the stickiness and traffic of your website.
There are several such techniques that can be used as a cool feature and also increase your traffic count. All technical leads in the web industry should be aware of this that might give them an additional edge over the others. Moreover, it is very important for all technical leads to understand how Google indexes each page and what Google considers a pageview. To have a competitive website, it is very important to understand these concepts.
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